Creating green lanes

We are using green lanes (* see below) to provide better corridors for wildlife on Abbey Farm. One of the aims of this is to create better links between habitats for bats, following advice from bat ecologists:

  • Abbey Farm has potentially good habitats for bats like woodland, grassland and wetlands, but these are often separated by relatively open, mainly treeless arable land
  • surveying found that single hedges on Abbey Farm were used by bats much less than double hedges, such as those along our established green lanes
  • bats would be more likely to use our hedgerows if they contained more trees. However, increasing the number of hedgerow trees could be damaging to breeding Grey Partridge
  • the double hedges of green lanes create better routes for bats without adding many hedgerow trees

To create green lanes we have planted a new hedge parallel to an existing hedge.
(* here we are using the term ‘green lane’ to mean an unmade track that has hedge or trees on both sides for most of its length).

Creating a new hedge bank
Making a bank for the new hedge beside an existing single hedge (Jan 2011)
New hedge
The new hedge about 18 months after planting