Paul Orsi and Gabriel Hemery (Sylva Foundation) recently met with members of the RSPB Woodland and Reserves team at a small woodland reserve in Buckinghamshire. The wood was bequeathed to the RSPB in the 1950s and is managed by the reserves team based in Otmoor.
The woodland is primarily managed for biodiversity and access, with active management focussing on the maintenance of an important area of meadow habitat, together with clearance of footpaths and rides. Discussions during the visit centred on how more active and productive management could improve the woodland for biodiversity as well as bringing in a small amount of income to offset running costs.
There were commonalities in approaches between the two organisations and it was stimulating to see how we were looking at the same challenges and opportunities through different lenses.
The team from the RSPB were interested in looking at how they could collaborate with other woodland owners, in what is a heavily-wooded area, to bring about economies of scale and to achieve landscape scale biodiversity benefits.
We look forward to continuing to work together to help bring more woodlands into management, so that they can thrive both ecologically and economically for the benefit of everyone.