Skip to main content

Forest pasturing of livestock in Norway: effects on spruce regeneration

A Correction to this article was published on 22 January 2018

A Correction to this article was published on 22 January 2018

This article has been updated

Abstract

Forest pasturing of free-roaming livestock is a common practice in many parts of the world, but knowledge on how it affects tree regeneration in boreal forests is lacking. We mapped tree density, livestock site use and accumulated damage to young trees of commercial interest (Norway spruce, Picea abies L. Karst.) on 56 clearcuts inside and outside a fenced forest area used for livestock pasturing in Ringsaker, Norway. Inside the fence 56±1.8% of spruce trees were damaged compared to 37±3.4% outside. Proportion of damaged spruce trees was positively related to cattle use of the clearcut, but not so for sheep. On the most intensively used clearcuts, four out of five trees were damaged. The density of deciduous trees was five times lower inside compared to outside of the fence (varying with plant species). While livestock grazing may reduce resource competition in favour of spruce, the current animal density clearly is impeding forest regeneration in the study area.

Change history

  • 22 January 2018

    The article “Forest pasturing of livestock in Norway: effects on spruce regeneration” written by Olav Hjeljord, Trond Histøl and Hilde Karine Wam was originally published Online First without open access.

  • 22 January 2018

    The article ���Forest pasturing of livestock in Norway: effects on spruce regeneration��� written by Olav Hjeljord, Trond Hist��l and Hilde Karine Wam was originally published Online First without open access.

  • 22 January 2018

    The article ���Forest pasturing of livestock in Norway: effects on spruce regeneration��� written by Olav Hjeljord, Trond Hist��l and Hilde Karine Wam was originally published Online First without open access.

References

  1. Arnold GW, Dudzinski ML. 1978. Ethology of free-ranging domestic animals. Amsterdam: Elsevier, p.198.

    Google Scholar 

  2. Asner GP, Elmore AJ, Olander LP, Martin RE, Harris AT. 2004. Grazing systems, ecosystem responses, and global change. Annual Review of Environment and Resources, 29: 261–299.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  3. Austrheim G, Solberg EJ, Mysterud A. 2011. Spatio-temporal variation in large herbivore pressure in Norway during 1949–1999: has decreased grazing by livestock been countered by increased browsing by cervids? Wildlife Biology, 17: 286–298.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  4. Belsky AJ, Blumenthal DM. 1997. Effects of livestock grazing on stand dynamics and soils in upland forests of the Interior West. Conservation Biology, 11: 315–327.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  5. Bennett LJ, English PF, McCain R. 1940. A study of deer populations by use of pellet-group counts. Journal of Wildlife Management, 4: 398–403.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  6. Bestelmeyer BT, Briske DD. 2012. Grand challenges for resilience-based management of rangelands. Rangeland Ecology & Management, 65: 654–663.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  7. Bjor K, Graffer H. 1963. Studies of forest pasturing in Norway. Særtrykk av forskning og forsøk i landbruket, 14: 121–365.

    Google Scholar 

  8. Brunson MW. 2012. The elusive promise of social-ecological approaches to rangeland management. Rangeland Ecology & Management, 65: 632–637.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  9. Fleischner TL. 1994. Ecological costs of livestock grazing in western North America. Conservation Biology, 8: 629–644.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  10. Hester AJ, Edenius L, Buttenschøn RM, Kuiters AT. 2000. Interactions between forests and herbivores: the role of controlled grazing experiments. Forestry, 73: 381–391.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  11. Hjelle KL, Hufthammer AK, Bergsvik KA. 2006. Hesitant hunters: a review of the introduction of agriculture in western Norway. Environmental Archaeology, 11: 147–170.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  12. Liss BM. 1988. Influence of grazing livestock and wildlife on natural and artificial recruitment of mixed mountain forest in the eastern Bavarian Alps. Forstwissenschaftliches Centralblatt, 107: 14–25.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  13. Mason IL. 1996. A world dictionary of livestock breeds, types and varieties (4thed). Wallingford: CABI Publishing, p.273.

    Google Scholar 

  14. Mayer AC, Stöckli V, Konold W, Kreuzer M. 2006. Influence of cattle stocking rate on browsing of Norway spruce in subalpine wood pastures. Agroforestry Systems, 66: 143–149.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  15. Neff DJ. 1968. The pellet-group count technique for big game trend, census, and distribution: A review. Journal of Wildlife Management, 32: 597–614.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  16. Östlund L, Zackrisson O, Axelsson AL. 1997. The history and transformation of a Scandinavian boreal forest landscape since the 19th century. Canadian Journal of Forest Research, 27: 1198–1206.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  17. Påhlsson L. 1984. Naturgeografisk regioninndeling av Norden. Stocholm: Nordiska Ministerrådet, p.510.

    Google Scholar 

  18. Pender JL. 1998. Population growth, agricultural intensification, induced innovation and natural resource sustainability: An application of neoclassical growth theory. Agricultural Economics, 19: 99–112.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  19. Prolux M, Mazumder A. 1998. Reversal of grazing impact on plant species richness in nutrient-poor vs. nutrient-rich ecosystems. Ecology, 79: 2581–2592.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  20. Putman RJ. 1984. Facts from faeces. Mammal Review, 14: 79–97.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  21. Rook AJ, Dumont B, Isselstein J, Osoro K, WallisDeVries MF, Parente K, Mills J. 2004. Matching type of livestock to desired biodiversity outcomes in pastures — a review. Biological Conservation, 119: 137–150.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  22. Sowell BF, Mosley JC, Bowman JGP. 1999. Social behavior of grazing beef cattle: Implications for management. In: Proceedings of the American Society of Animal Science 1999, pp. 1–6.

    Google Scholar 

  23. Statistics Norway. 2012a. Statistikkbanken: subject 10, table 03688. (in Norwegian). Available at: http://statbank.ssb.no/statistikkbanken. [Access at 15-02-2013].

    Google Scholar 

  24. Statistics Norway. 2012b. Statistikkbanken: subject 10, table 03710. (in Norwegian). Available at: http://statbank.ssb.no/statistikkbanken. [Access15-02-2013].

    Google Scholar 

  25. Tomter SM. 1999. Skog 2000. Statistikk over skogforhold og -ressurser i Norge. NIJOS rapport 7/99.

    Google Scholar 

  26. Tveite B. 1977. Site-index curves for Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) Karst.). Norwegian Forest Research Institute, Report No. 33.1, p.84. (in Norwegian with English summary.

    Google Scholar 

  27. Wam HK, Hjeljord O, Solberg EJ. 2010. Differential forage use makes carrying capacity equivocal on ranges of Scandinavian moose (Alces alces). Canadian Journal of Zoology, 88: 1179–1191.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  28. Wam HK, Pedersen HC, Hjeljord O. 2012. Balancing hunting regulations and hunter satisfaction: An integrated biosocioeconomic model to aid in sustainable management. Ecological Economics, 79: 89–96.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  29. Zimmerman GT, Neuenschwander LF. 1984. Livestock grazing influences on community structure, fire intensity, and fire frequency within the Douglas-fir/ninebark habitat type. Journal of Range Management, 37: 104–110.

    Article  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Hilde Karine Wam.

Additional information

Project Funding: Research was partly funded by the Research Council of Norway, project #215647/E40 (Intensified harvesting of forests — implications for enterprises related to wild and domestic ungulates).

Rights and permissions

Open Access  This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made.

The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder.

To view a copy of this licence, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Hjeljord, O., Histøl, T. & Wam, H.K. Forest pasturing of livestock in Norway: effects on spruce regeneration. Journal of Forestry Research 25, 941–945 (2014). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11676-014-0487-5

Download citation

  • Received:

  • Accepted:

  • Published:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s11676-014-0487-5

Key words

  • browsing
  • cattle
  • damage
  • timber
  • sheep
  • ungulate