If you have woodland on the farm, managing it for wildlife is now easier thanks to the Woodland Wildlife Toolkit, a new web-based support tool for woodland managers, agents and advisers across Great Britain.

The Woodland Wildlife Toolkit is designed to help reverse declines seen in wildlife that depends on woodland.

Woodland can bring many benefits, but how it is managed makes a big difference for wildlife. In natural systems, time, weather and the natural lifespan of trees work to create a variety of different conditions within a forest, hosting rich wildlife communities. Sustainable management can recreate many of these conditions to increase a woodland’s value to wildlife, whilst also producing useful wood products.

The Woodland Wildlife Toolkit provides advice on how to manage woodland to benefit wildlife, in particular rare and declining species, enabling users to access to a wealth of ecological information and expertise from across the sector. The toolkit has been developed by the RSPB, Butterfly Conservation, Bat Conservation Trust, Plantlife, Woodland Trust, Forestry Commission, Natural England and the Sylva Foundation. It brings together species data from more than 30 organisations, via a map-based search facility to find out which important wildlife is likely to be in or near your woodland site.

Image: Michael Harvey (rspb-images.com)

The toolkit makes management decisions easier, by relating these records to management advice factsheets written by expert ecologists, providing a summary of key management actions, together with ready access to more detailed advice about the needs of particular species and groups. The toolkit also includes advice on assessing the condition of woodland and management planning, together with a wealth of helpful guidance on everything from managing mixed different woodland types, timing of management, to native woodland creation.

Find out how the Woodland Wildlife Toolkit could help to transform your woodland for wildlife by visiting www.woodlandwildlifetoolkit.org.uk