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Sustainability 2013, 5(2), 387-399; doi:10.3390/su5020387

Pigs and Pollards: Medieval Insights for UK Wood Pasture Restoration

Umeå University, Department of Ecology & Environmental Science, 90187 Umeå, Sweden
Received: 13 December 2012 / Revised: 14 January 2013 / Accepted: 21 January 2013 / Published: 29 January 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Terrestrial Ecosystem Restoration)
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English wood pastures have become a target for ecological restoration, including the restoration of pollarded trees and grazing animals, although pigs have not been frequently incorporated into wood pasture restoration schemes. Because wood pastures are cultural landscapes, created through the interaction of natural processes and human practices, a historical perspective on wood pasture management practices has the potential to provide insights for modern restoration projects. Using a wide range of both written and artistic sources form the Middle Ages, this article argues that pigs were fed in wood pastures both during the mast season when acorns were available and at other times as grazing fields. Pollarded pedunculate oak (Quercus robur) likely dominated these sustainable cultural landscapes during the medieval period.
Keywords: swine; oaks; woodlands; restoration; Middle Ages; history swine; oaks; woodlands; restoration; Middle Ages; history
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Jørgensen, D. Pigs and Pollards: Medieval Insights for UK Wood Pasture Restoration. Sustainability 2013, 5, 387-399.

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