Ancient and Veteran Tree Survey

Buckinghamshire and Milton Keynes Environmental Records Centre are currently surveying and mapping trees in the county. Have you seen a tree that looks ancient, veteran or old?
Please send an email with the location of the tree and a photo if you can at: www.bucksmkerc.org.uk
Email: Claudia.Bernardini@buckinghamshire.gov.uk ; erc@buckscc.gov.uk

A tree is defined as ancient when it has passed maturity and it is very old compared to trees of the same species.

Notable trees might not be that ancient or not have veteran features but they can be very large, mature and magnificent and have other unique characteristics.

Six hundred years old oak (Quercus sp.), Stoke Poges Memorial Gardens

Veteran is a tree that because of harsh and adverse growing conditions shows signs of ancientness,
irrespective of its age. A veteran tree can have the characteristics of ancientness without being ancient!

Dead and dying trees also are very important especially for species that specialize on deadwood.
Those species rely on standing and fallen dead trees, on dead branches in the canopy and on dead
wood on the ground for their survival. Therefore retaining
all dead wood is important.

ANCIENT AND VETERAN TREES
Ancient and veteran trees often support a large number of rare and specialist species of
invertebrates, lichens, fungi, birds and mammals. Their branches, leaves, roots, decay, dead wood,
hollows in the trunk, loose bark and water pools represent important habitats for wildlife.
Individual trees are key in the survival of some rare species, but more and better connected trees
offer greater chances of survival for species to move
across trees and over time.

THE NEXT GENERATION
With the right conservation and management veteran trees will become the next generation of
ancients that will provide safe habitat for their
wildlife.