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Vegetation Changes in the Community Forest

If you are walking in the Cranbrook Community Forest, specifically the recently thinned area just upslope of the College of the Rockies, you will note a small bunch of wire cages scattered through the forest. It is nothing nefarious, they are not rabbit traps they are forage cages. As part of the thinning operations the Cranbrook Community Forest Society has agreed, over the next ten years, to monitor the change in vegetation on the treated area. The cages keep deer or other ungulates from nibbling on a small half square metre of vegetation. By comparing the growth inside the cage to the growth outside, we can see how much of the grass and herbs are being eaten by wildlife. It gives us a better handle on the amount of new growth and what species on coming back on site. It has been two growing seasons since the treatment and we will remeasure at 3, 5 and ten years post treatment. So please leave the rabbit hutches alone it helps us decide how effective the treatment is.

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