Habitat management

The aim of habitat management is to ensure the preservation of game animal habitats. Habitat management measures deliver long-term effects. In forest management, emphasis can be given to measures that benefit game animals.

Volunteer work is valuable in the management of game animal habitats.

In the management of cervid habitats, the animals’ access to food during the winter should be ensured. When the density of broad-leaved trees is appropriate, cervids do not damage coniferous trees grown in the forest. The animals’ large home ranges are a challenge in the management of cervid habitats.

Key elements in the management of forest grouse habitats include food and cover. However, different grouse species have different habitat needs. Capercaillie prefers mature forests further away from human activities. Black grouse thrives better in forests that are in earlier stages of succession. Hazel grouse needs alder forest to feed on and spruce forest to provide cover. Forests flanking peatlands are important habitats for willow grouse.

In the management of field game habitats, the aim is controlled “unmanagement”. Moderate autumn ploughing may enable field game to have more cover and improve the status of the population in the area.

The most important waterfowl habitats include their breeding areas and staging areas during migration. Wintering areas play a more significant role in other parts of Europe. For waterfowl, important game management measures include establishing and restoring wetlands.