Health status of Alder in Scotland

Project Lead: Stephen Hendry
Host Institution: Forest Research
Project Date: 30 June 2020 to 10 May 2021
Reference Number:
PHC2019/09
Concerns over the condition of alder in the north of Scotland were raised in 2019 and PHC compiled a project call to determine the cause, scale and consequences of the potential progressive Alder decline. This project was put on hold over winter 2019 and was due to commence at the start of May 2020 when the season was conducive for field sampling, however, due to continuing COVID restrictions, no site visits were possible.

Therefore, a small desk study was undertaken by Forest Research to provide a firmer evidence base and begin to identify the nature and scale of alder health problems in Scotland. A request to Scottish Forestry’s Tree Health team for information of sites at which alders are currently displaying symptoms of poor health identified 15 sites. The symptoms displayed at these sites differed widely and are a strong indication of different agents being associated with the decline of alders at different sites. Collation of the data for these sites is now complete and provides a firm basis upon which to carry out targeted field visits when fieldwork becomes feasible. Discussions are underway between experts at FR, RBGE, Hutton, and NatureScot to consider options for fulfilling the objectives of the original project call.
Position:
Institution: Forest Research
Position:
Institution: Forest Research