of course we should manage and plant trees they help us breathe and provide food for us and life for other creatures we can co-inside with trees of course for f***'s sake
Plant & protect Danny's trees for life.
Trees are the lungs of the earth.
I vote provocatively for NEITHER!
My focus is avoiding dangerous climate change. I suggest that foresters and timber interests have exaggerated the carbon value of managing woodlands for timber production, it is part of their values and they are looking for subsidies to support intensive loss making activity. Our slow growing native woodlands may sequester as much or even more carbon if left well alone to develop as natural undisturbed wildwoods.
I would not advocate a major intensive planting programme because artificial methods involving cultivation, herbicides and pesticides can bring early carbon emissions particularly from soils.
I would like to see an increase in woodland cover for carbon and biodiversity reasons, but believe this could be achieved by reducing agricultural subsidies so that marginal land becomes natural woodland through "abandonment" or perhaps "rewilding".
While your poll is intended to be simple the point where I depart from only your preference for managing existing woods better - is that we would probably agree that too much money is wasted on minor tree plantings that frequently are plantings of too narrow a range of species. We do need more woods and connected woodland and other landscapes to create sustainable wildlife areas. I happen to believe that the same issue pertains to paying farmers. I would suggest that instead of paying production intensive farmers to deliver next to no benefits, more money should go to conservation groups, local and national to buy land and manage it for wildlife or for sustainable farming. There could then be much greater bang for every £ invested.
Being, not as knowledgeable as you, in understanding tree ecosystems etc. and what they represent, I will add my tuppence worth.
As a birder, whose favourite patch is a local woodland valley/parkland ecosystem; the true value of this type of habitat is stunning. It contains a few rare breeding species such as Willow Tit, Hawfinch, Crossbill and hosts many other winter visitors. As a bird lister, I currently have a BirdTrack listing of over 75 species, which is still growing, for this small area alone. As well as the birds, there are specialist woodland butterflies, many other insects, snakes and reptiles etc; all providing an endless list of natural delights. If I were to add, that the actual wood itself, is in private hands and is managed, for and by, the shooting fraternity.
In answering your question, I feel we need mixed type woods (as above), managed woodland, private woodland etc. in their many guises to enable all the ecosystems to function. Above all else, I would say we do need more woodland but these also need to be rich in type and quality. As an example, an option that appears to be missed by the pheasant rearing sector is to allow both deep cover and open areas within the same woodland habitat. Maybe this is being done? Either way, it always seems to come back to the old chestnut, BIODIVERSITY.