Protecting the trees

Beech trees look great during the summer

Sitting behind the cafe at the top of Crickley Hill is an area affectionately known as The Scrubbs. The Scrubbs is a site of special scientific interest due to the trees and wildlife it supports.

The large mature beech trees provide an important habitat for beetles. Some of which are recorded nowhere else in the country. Plants such as dog's mercury and sanicle thrive where the ground is undisturbed.

Beetles can be spotted on the woodland floor
Beetles can be spotted on the woodland floor
Beetles can be spotted on the woodland floor

Disappearing dens

Den building, although fun, is damaging the fallen deadwood and root plate of the magnificent trees which grow in the Scrubbs. Fallen wood under a tree can be a sign that the tree is stressed. While we monitor the trees by the waymarked paths, many are left for nature to take its course.

The scarlet elf cup fungus loves to grow on fallen branches
The scarlet elf cup fungus loves to grow on fallen branches
The scarlet elf cup fungus loves to grow on fallen branches

When dens are built, large pieces of wood are moved and leant against weak branches or other trees. These pieces are often loose and can easily fall.

Many flowers and plants are trampled when branches are collected for den building. Some important species have disappeared or retreated from areas where they should be thriving. Young tree stems are also easily snapped and can be torn from the ground.

You can help us

We've been taking dens down to help protect the woodland and the wildlife that live in the Scrubbs. Please help us by leaving deadwood where it lies.