Woodland grazing toolbox

Woodland grazing toolbox

4.1.2 Distinguishing mammal damage to young trees from damage by other factors

Evidence and likely causes

EvidenceLikely causes

Leader intact with no visible bark removal. Evidence of die-back or browning. Shoots unhealthy, e.g. wilting, drooping or needle loss.

Tree has a disease or disorder. Could be invertebrate related or due to drought, cold, wind, frost or other abiotic factor. Frost damage occurs mainly during spring. Shoots wilt and droop.

Leader intact but has small irregular patches of bark removed. Sometimes ring-barked stem. Other areas e.g. main stem or side branches, might also be similarly affected.

Damage probably due to invertebrates. Damage generally occurs between March and October for weevils & beetles but can occur at any time. Conifers are more likely to be affected than broadleaves.

Leading, and /or other shoots, not present. Cut stems visible. Removed shoots may be present on the ground. (N.B. if the damage is not fresh, shoots that had been left on the ground might have been removed).

Tree has been browsed by a mammal, black grouse or capercaillie.