Aug 12, 2022
A taste of summer in EcoTree forests
There’s lots going on in EcoTree forests over the summer. Learn more about what we’ve been up to between May–August 2022.
So what’s been happening in EcoTree forests this summer? Well, exciting activities include visits from preschool children, monitoring bees and pollinators, experimenting with biochar and hosting a forest festival. Let’s take a closer look at all the action from our forests over the course of summer 2022.
Summer in the forest
Every season is busy when it comes to EcoTree forests, but summer has certain magic with the trees in full bloom. That's why we always like to share some of the fun and interesting things that happen, as sustainable forestry means there is always a lot going on to tell you about!
School field trips and activities
In May, children from a local preschool in Sarran visited our forest in the region. The young preschoolers were led by employees from the Permanent Centre for Environmental Initiatives (CPIE). Working together, they enjoyed a range of activities, including a task to identify birds just from their sounds.
However, teaching children about forest life is about much more than identifying species. Later on in June, the children got the opportunity to carry out their own meaningful biodiversity conservation by creating and placing nests in the forest.
Observing and taking inventory
The children weren't the only people in our woods during the summer to observe birds and other wildlife. Our team spent time carefully observing and evaluating our forests to see how their biodiversity had developed. This is a key part of our commitment to sustainable forest management.
Some of the methods the team used include the Kilometric Abundance Index (IKA) and Estimating of the Populations of Common Birds (EPOC), both recognised techniques for estimating bird populations.
It can be time-consuming work that requires plenty of patience, but it’s extremely valuable to effectively assess progress.
Monitoring bees and other pollinators
EcoTree runs several projects designed to conserve and protect bees and other vital pollinators. The CPIE carried out a survey of wild pollinators in our Monceaux-sur-Dordogne forest, which included capturing single bees to identify the different species present in the area.
We’ll be following up this work over the next three years and hope that more bees will come and increase each habitat's biological diversity. You can learn more about our biodiversity projects and even see how you too can help bees thrive.
End of the planting season
For our team of fine foresters, summer marks the end of the planting season, though a few final touches were needed in some of our forests. Douglas firs and chestnut trees were planted in our Finistère forest in Melgven, while pine and oak were planted in the forest in Berné. The team also set about clearing, tillage and other forestry work in forests where it was needed.
Spraying with Trico, a natural pesticide
Deer are great – we love deer! – but they often like to munch on and destroy vulnerable new trees. Indeed, in a few of our forests, we saw damage to trees from some pretty large game. Freshly planted trees in EcoTree forests are just as tasty as anywhere else, so we have to do something to protect them.
Our solution is to use the natural pesticide Trico, which is made from sheep fat. It works well against deer and other wild animals, who are rather put off and choose to walk on by to find lunch elsewhere. Of course, it’s important to us that we protect our forests with a natural solution, and Trico has no negative impact on the trees or wider habitat.
Over the last year, we have been running an ambitious project to spread biochar in some of our forests to improve soil quality and purify the water. In the last week of June, a team of forest experts from our French and international offices spent time looking over the progress of our experiment. For example, they collected soil samples, observed key sites and measured young trees. We’ll let you know the results when we have them!
National Forest Festival
Our forests in Pézarches and Launay Guen were part of the forest festival, Nuits des Forêts (Forest Nights). Many people came from miles around, including both children and adults who got to learn more about forestry, beekeeping, bats and lots of other fascinating forest topics. The event combined fun activities and important forest knowledge – perfect!
Want to support EcoTree?
Now you know more about what’s been going on in EcoTree forests so far during the summer of 2022. But maybe you want to become part of our movement? There are several ways to get involved!
First, you can learn more about our unique approach to sustainable forestry or read the latest articles on our blog.
And if you want to go ahead and make a direct contribution, the easiest way is to buy trees, take out a tree subscription or donate to one of our biodiversity conservation projects.