Forestry study tour took place in Germany for policy holders and practitioners from the South Caucasus region | WWF

Forestry study tour took place in Germany for policy holders and practitioners from the South Caucasus region

Posted on
20 May 2013
Within the framework of the project “Increasing the resilience of forest ecosystems against climate change in the South Caucasus Countries” through forest transformation” (the Project), WWF-Germany in partnership with WWF regional office - Caucasus Programme Office (WWF-Caucasus) and other WWF offices in the South Caucasus countries organized the study tour to Germany in April 14-21, 2013.

Study tour was planned as one of the Project’s activities for staff from the target countries’ relevant governmental agencies and forestry administrations. The study tour was organised and led by the governmental entity (German State Forest Service Organization – HESSEN FORST) selected in Germany.

Study Tour Programme specified the objectives of the study, the topics and the types of site which should be included in the agenda, and the duration, numbers of persons and other logistical matters.

The objective of the study tour was for forestry policy holders and practitioners from the region to learn how climate change has been addressed in the forestry policy and strategy of an EU member state and to see at first hand the silvicultural techniques which forest managers in that member state are using to make forests more resilient to the projected impacts of climate change.

The Project had chosen Germany as the destination country for the study tour: many of Germany’s federal states had been implementing policies of converting poorly adapted monocultures to more diverse and more resilient stands for a number of years, and forest managers in Germany - in the state and private sectors - have a lot of practical experience in forest transformation.

15 persons participated in the study tour: 2 senior staff from each of the countries’ relevant governmental agencies, 2 staff from each of the countries’ relevant local forestry administrations and 1 member of the WWF Project team from each of the country.

Specific points covered by the study tour programme

• Indoor presentation of the German state forest service’s (Hessen Forest) policy on forests and climate change.

• Indoor presentation of a state forest district’s and a communal forest’s strategy for converting its monoculture forest stands to more resilient, mixed forest stands and the silvicultural measures which it uses.

• Field visits showed different stages in the transformation of various types of monoculture forest stands into forest stands that were expected to be more resilient to climate change.

The stands that were selected for the field visits included some stands that were as close as is practically possible to the stands at the pilot sites in the target countries in terms of the silvicultural measures that applied to them, i.e.:

• Pine (spruce) stands of different ages and qualities;

• canopy densities in some parts of the stands that were low enough for light demanding successor species to prosper but in other parts so high that only shade tolerant species were able to prosper unless canopy density is reduced;

• grazing by domestic livestock (respectively game) was preventing the development of natural regeneration (and prevented establishment by seeding/planting);

• the potential for natural regeneration of tree species that were native to the site was very good in some parts of some of the stands and very poor in other parts;

• dense herb layer in some parts of some of the stands and a tall, dense herb and shrub layer in many parts if livestock/game were excluded.


More details on study tour are found in Forestry Study Tour Report.


For further information please contact:

Malkhaz Dzneladze
Regional Coordinator, EU ENRTP Caucasus Project
WWF-Caucasus
Tel.: +995 32 2237500
mdzneladze@wwfcaucasus.org
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