Trees and Their Environment

Trees and Their Environment
In this piece of work I am trying to answer the question. Do trees modify their environment? And the way a wood is managed has no effect on the ecosystem. Bishops wood is 1km west of Northwood in Hertfordshire. It is centered on grid reference 06, 92. It is 5 kms south of Rickmansworth and it?s bordered on 2 sides by shrubs road and harfield road. Much of the wood is surrounded by farmland. The area of Bishops wood is around 1km². The actual size in hectares is 38.8. Bishops wood country park is managed by the Three rivers District Council. The countryside commission classified it as a country park in 1988. Bishops wood is used as a country park. It is popular for walkers and horse riders. Visitors who come by car would use the small car park area near the entrance. At the entrance people can find out about picnic areas and litter bins and trails from the information board. The question I am trying to answer is ?Do trees modify their ecosystem?? To do this I have made my own hypothesis. Hypothesis 1 Where there are coniferous trees; it will be cooler and drier. Also there will be less sunlight and less plants growing than where there are no trees
Deciduous Lose all leaves in autumn/winter Bright Wetter soil More heat i.e. higher temp More ground cover More light More leaf litter. Coniferous Acid leaves Lose few leaves all year Darker Drier soil Less heat i.e. lower temp Less ground cover Less light Less leaf litter. Where there are trees it will be cooler because the coniferous trees keep their leaves all years + will be blocking out the suns rays which changes into heat when they hit the ground, However this don?t happen where there are coniferous trees. It would also be drier because the canopy will intercept the rain from hitting the ground so there will be less infiltration. Also there will be less sunlight because the canopy will stop the sunlight hitting the ground. As a result there will be less plants growing because the plants wouldn?t get any sunlight, water and nutrients and plant need these for photosynthesis or they wouldn?t survive. The soil will be acidic and that?s would be because the leaves of the coniferous are acidic and are pined leaves and so when the leaves decompose, the acid will be absorbed by the soil. And lastly there will be less growing ground cover then in the deciduous wood because the coniferous trees don?t lose there leafs at the same time of the year, they lose their leaves all throughout the year and block out the sun light, due to more leaves. The Second Hypothesis The hypothesis I am trying to answer is: ?Management has no effect on the ecosystem of woodlands? Management means looking after something. Woods are managed in different ways to attract tourists. [image] During the visit the types of management I saw evidence of in the deciduous wood were habitat, estate and recreation management. The most obvious form of management I saw in the deciduous wood was the recreation management. Some of the feature which I saw where; Car parks, this is because people can park their cars so the cars are in a safe place and not causing any damage to the woods, There were also Picnic tables for people so they can have a place to eat so they don?t just eat anywhere in the woods and make a pollution. Benches where there so people can sit down instead of wondering of into the woods looking for a place to site. There where about 3 trails in the wood so people don?t get lost and don?t wonder off inside the woods and cause any damage. And last but not least there were Maps and information boards so people know where the places are and they know were to go if they want to go somewhere map OF habitat management [image] There is evidence of habitat management, as shown on the map above. One feature which shows is deliberate planting of trees this is planted to attract tourist so they can see different types of trees. There is also evidence of thinning and coppicing, this is so there will be light to the ground so more different plants start to grow. And they have also removed trees which are dangerous to visitors because it could be hazardous to the people. map OF estate management [image] Some of the features which show estate management is maintaining footpaths for the tourists and other people this is so they don?t walk into the forest to cross on the other side or even if there is a muddy soil and they don?t walk on the side if they do then the forest could get damaged so they managements always keep the footpaths safe and clear. They have also numbered the trees to protect them against fire. This is because if there was a fire in the forest they could just say which trees (numbered trees) is on fire and to stop the fire from spreading out, they could plan a way to stop it. There are litter bins in the forest so the wood doesn?t become polluted with litter and for safety reason i.e. fire. Because if there was a shiny piece of metal or coating of some sort, it could reflect the sun rays into the trees with heavy heat. map OF community and educational management [image] There are information boards in the forest to guide the tourist if they don?t know where to go. This is because if they didn?t have information boards then the tourists wouldn?t know where they are going and they could get lost in the forest. The diagram on the left shows the tree ages of 10 trees we measured. The average tree age for the deciduous tree came out to be 83 years whereas the average age of the coniferous came out to be only 31 years. [image] [image] [image] These different forms of management have affected the ecosystem of the deciduous wood. My transects in the deciduous wood shows the following readings Light 91% Temperature 12.3 Â?C Soil moisture 2 Soil PH 5 As far as ground cover was concerned there was leaf litter in all 4 quadrats with a total of 210%. This is unexpected because we went in the wood in spring so the deciduous wood should be gaining leaves not losing them. It could be a reason because the leaf litter might not have decomposed in the winter because the temperature was very high. There were 180% of beech nuts in all 4 quadrats. This is because the deciduous wood was a beech tree so there were plenty of beech nuts on the ground. There was a very little amount of twigs, just 75%, however they were found in all 4 quadrats. There were twigs because the deciduous trees have lots of twigs growing on them so that would explain why there were twigs in all 4 quadrats. The lowest amount found in all 4 quadrats was the weeds, with 5% in 3 quadrats and 10% in 1 quadrats with a total of just 25%. This is because the weed was grown on the side of the path, just under the tree. So they got enough water and minerals so they could grow. Lastly there was 50% of soil found in 2 quadrats. The soil could have come up due to people walking and treading on the ground. Also because the water will hit the ground making the soil to come up. note TO miss: This is wrong. I have to do the % againâ??AND I have TO talk about whats IN the transects [image] Transect coniferous across path. My transect in the young coniferous shows a very high percentage of leaf litter. This is because the coniferous trees lose their leaves throughout the year so this means there will be leaves all year. And because we came to bishops wood in spring. It could be that the leafs haven?t decomposed because it was winter before. So the leafs haven?t had much time to decompose. The soil moisture was high but there was an unexpected result of bramble and bracken because both of them were very low. This was unexpected because the soil moisture was high enough for the bramble and bracken to grow. This could have been because of the soil PH, which was acidic so this explains why there was a very low amount of bramble and bracken. There was an unexpected result of the light reading; which showed 81 %( very high). This is unexpected because the canopy should intercept the light. It might be a reason for the trees being young because the average tree age found in the young coniferous wood was 31 years so this could be the reason why the light reading is very high because young trees are small and will be growing so they won?t be intercepting sunlight if they are still young. There is an unexpected result of the temperature being at 11.5 Â?C (which is below average). This is unexpected because the light reading was very high so then the temperature should be high because when light hits the ground it turns to heat. Bu the light reading explain why there is a high amount of soil moisture because the temperature is below average so there will be less evaporation of the water from the soil. And the temperature explains why there is total coverage of the leaf litter. Because of the low temperature the leaf litter isn?t decomposed quickly by the bacteria which need the temperature of over 23Â?C. The total coverage of the leaf litter can also explain why the soil PH was acidic this is because more leaves on the ground makes the soil more acidic because the coniferous pined leaves are acidic. Lastly there was a low amount of twigs this could be because of the habitat management. The management cutting twigs of trees could be the reason why they want the soil to be fertile and by cutting down twigs, bacteria can decompose the twig to make nutrients for the soil. Animals climbing trees can also make the twigs damaged and fall off. In comparison, in the coniferous woods the light reading was 81% while the temperature was 11.5Â?C compared to the deciduous wood the soil moisture was 2 and the soil ph was 5. As a result of these differences the ground cover of leaf litter, both woods had a range of 170%, 400% in coniferous and 230% in deciduous. Also there were twigs in all 4 quadrats for both woods; the coniferous wood had 35% more twigs than the deciduous wood. And in both woods, soil was found in just 2 transects, with 10% in the coniferous and 50% in the deciduous wood, in total. However in both woods there were a couple of things which weren?t found in one wood. For example there was 70% bramble in the coniferous wood however there wasn?t any bramble in the deciduous wood and also there was 180% of beech nuts and 25% weed in the deciduous wood, which weren?t found in the coniferous wood. The ecosystem is different in the coniferous wood because the coniferous wood is used to make furniture and other things from the trees so there isn?t much of recreation management. The type of management which was most important I the coniferous wood was habitat management. map evidence OF habitat management The map above shows the evidence of habitat management in the coniferous wood. One of the features it had was that plants were planted in row. This is because if plants are in rows the light can reach all the trees and it?s easy for people to cut and remove the tree with out damaging other trees. Another evidence we saw was that the trees were thinned and coppiced so the same row don?t get all the nutrients. It allows all the trees to get nutrients. There is also brashing, meaning cutting the top leaf of trees) this will help other trees because then light and moisture will be able to reach the ground so the other planted trees can grow and get light and water. And lastly but not least we saw dead wood on the ground this is so the bacteria can decompose it and the growing trees will be able to get more nutrients. In the coniferous wood, it also had bird boxes and bat boxes so bats and birds can eat there and provide shelter if it rain. map evidence OF estate management There are gates and access areas in the coniferous wood to keep people out so they don?t go inside and damage the trees in anyway, this is because the coniferous trees aren?t grown to attract tourists, there made to make furniture and other wooden things. However there are paths in the coniferous trees because if the tourists decide to go and look at the trees then there will be a path for them to walk on. There are fences near the paths so the tourists don?t go inside the forests. There are litter bin and benches there, this is because if people decide to take a rest and eat then there will be benches for them to site on and bins so they can put their rubbish in there. And we also saw that the trees were numbered for safety reasons. I.e. fire. fire can be caused because if something shiny is in there forest and the forest sets up on fire because of it, the management can just say which tree the fire is near and this way they can plan a way to stop the fire from spreading out to the other trees. Looking back at the hypothesis, "Management has no effect on the ecosystem of woodlands", my result show that the coniferous and deciduous are managed in different ways. Since coniferous trees are managed by habitat management and deciduous is managed by recreation. This is because coniferous trees are used for making furniture and other wooden products whereas deciduous trees are used to attract tourists because deciduous trees grow in different types and shapes so this attracts the tourist. And this has caused the coniferous trees to be planted in rows and is also thinned and coppiced. It is also Brashed meaning the top leaves of the coniferous trees are cut so the sunlight can reach the ground for other trees to grow. And they leave dead wood on the ground so it is decomposed and trees get more nutrients. But in deciduous trees there is evidence of habitat management such as deliberate planting of trees to attract more tourists, its also thinned and coppiced so there will be light to the ground so different plants grow. For example on the side of the paths thinning help the path to stay clear and clean because if none of the hanging branches were cut, it would just block the path. And of course the most obvious form of management is recreation management. And this means it will have services for local people and tourists like car parks, picnic tables, trails, maps etc. Overall I enjoyed going to Bishop?s wood because I had learnt a lot of new things about plants and animals. For example I never knew that plants are thinned and coppiced and one other thing I learnt is that the trees are numbered for safety reasons. I think I worked very well of other when we collected the data we needed. I can say that when I was working out the soil moisture, I finished and helped out my group which were measuring the transects. The new skills I used when in the forest would be communication and team work skills because I haven?t really did and team work before and this was a really good experience of it. Also other skills like drawing skills came useful when we had to draw the coniferous and deciduous trees. I personally think we did really well and we completed the tasks before most of the other groups so we worked really fast and quickly. The easiest part was when we had to collect the data of the 4 quadrats because we had lots of open space to work. The most difficult part we did was probably measuring the trees width, this is difficult because we had to move a lot and find lots of different width trees. I think we could have improved our work by having more evidence in the quadrats i.e. if we had like 4-5 quadrats and we did 2-3 of them, then we could add then and calculate the average, this way we would have got more accurate and average data we needed.

Trees and Their Environment 6.9 of 10 on the basis of 792 Review.