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Ashtead Common veteranisation trial

01 March 2013

Contractor carrying out veteranisation project on Ashtead Common

​Contractor carrying out the veteranisation trial on Ashtead Common

​Ashtead Common is taking part in an international trial to "veteranise" oaks and improve our understanding of how we can encourage them to age more quickly to provide homes for wildlife.

As old trees become increasingly rare in our modern world, the animals and fungi dependent on them are in danger. By damaging younger trees and speeding up hollowing, we hope to better understand how to improve this "housing crisis".

Veteranisation trial - woodpecker hole

​Veteranisation trial - woodpecker hole, made in oak on Ashtead Common

​35 trees in the woodland to the north of the Common have been intentionally damaged to create homes for the animals and fungi that live in the hollows and dead parts of old trees. Damage caused included "woodpecker holes", "horse scrapes" and ring barking of part of the tree amongst other things.

Veteranisation project - horse scrape

​Veteranisation trial - horse scrape on oak on Ashtead Common

​Ashtead Common is one of three sites in the UK to take part in this trial, along with another 17 sites in Sweden and Norway.

For further information, download the veteranisation information sheet (557kb).

27 February 2013
Last Modified:
29 September 2017