Grazing in forested areas is very common in Sardinia as in most Mediterranean countries although it is frequently considered a non-sustainable practice, particularly in damaged areas. The paper presents data from an experimental trial set up in central Sardinia after a wildfire that damaged and partially destroyed existing mixed oak stands. In an area of circa 80 ha, 900 m a.s.l., 4 parcels have been fenced leaving 2 central stripes as no-grazing, control parcels. Since 1978 a herd of Sarda breed cows has been grazing in these parcels under experimentally controlled conditions. Grazing intensity was intentionally set at relatively low levels, between 0.5 and 0.9 cows per hectare. Grazing productivity, in biological as well as economic terms, is easily evidenced in available records. Scope of the trial is to study if, and eventually how much, did the forest suffer due to grazing. Permanent forestry plots have been set in 1988 and remesured in 2002, to evaluate forests evolution. Analysing existing aerial photos and mensurational data, forest expansion and growth is quantitatively evaluated. After 25 years of constant grazing it is quite evident that the cows did not prevent forest natural restoration.
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|Titolo:||Grazing cows in a forest restoration area in Sardinia: 25 years of experimental data|
SCOTTI, Roberto (Corresponding)
|Data di pubblicazione:||2005|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||2.1 Contributo in volume (Capitolo o Saggio)|