© Guiting Manor Farms Ltd 2015
The farm is managed under a whole farm approach, providing a mosaic of diverse habitats which provide feeding, breeding and shelter for a wide range of species throughout the year. The arable and grass crops provide a habitat in addition to all of the boundary and woodland features.
Environmental Stewardship – ELS & HLS
The farm is participating in both the Entry Level Stewardship (ELS) Scheme and the Higher Level Stewardship (HLS) Scheme. These agreements are administered by Natural England and they will run for 10 years. Some of the targeted objectives and outcomes for the Schemes are:
• Provide food and habitats for insects, farmland birds and small mammals
• Hedgerow restoration
• Protection of archaeological features
• Creation of species rich grassland
• Protection of species rich grassland
Examples of the options in place include:
• Pollen and nectar mixtures
• Wild bird seed mixture
• Unharvested headlands
• Beetle banks
• Overwintered stubbles
• Rough grass field corners
The farm has 27km of hedgerows, with the roadside hedges being trimmed annually and the others either biannually or triennially. By trimming hedgerows less frequently, it helps to provide over winter food and habitat sources for a wide range of species.
Woodland Creation and Management
Woodland of all ages serves as a landscape feature and provides a wide range of habitat for biodiversity in general. The types of woodland grown together with the on-going management can be of increased benefit to targeted species. In the ancient semi-natural woodland, the farm undertakes annual coppice management to preserve and enrich the historical environment.