Agrame moose shelters

- The basic principle of the product is to keep the crown intact and direct the moose to the other branches.

SHELTERS FOR PINES     - Read more
The shelter is kept in place on the crown of the pine seedling by a pin located on the inside of the shelter. The shelter is installed with the wider opening of the base at the top of the seedling, allowing the branches to expand in the shape of the upside down cone. This also allows for easier removal of the shelter in the following year. Under normal circumstances, the shelter easily slides upward on the seedling with new bud growth. If large, lateral branches grow during the new annual growth period, the ventilation opening can be slit to allow the shelter to slide past the new growth. The installation rate is approximately 2500-4000 units per day.

For fragile buds, the top 1-2 branches should be placed on the inside of the shelter to better support the shelter and help it to remain in place, even under windy conditions. Protection should start as soon as the seedling is 60-80 cm tall at which point the stem of the seedling is strong enough to support the shelter.

In order to ensure that the tree shelter remains in place, it should be placed around the base of the seedling, with at least the previous year's branches on the inside of the shelter. This will stabilize the shelter and help to ensure that it remains in place, even under the windiest of conditions. The net-like structure of the shelter will help to ensure minimal wind resistance as well as proper ventilation at all times. This will further ensure that moisture will not collect inside the shelter, preventing wetness and mold damage. The shelter should remain in place during the entire growth period of the seedling – it will not inhibit the growth of the seedling. The shelter should be installed as soon as the seedling grows to 100-120 cm in height, at which point the seedling will be strong enough to support the shelter.

Installation of the shelter

It is important to install the shelter in such a way that the crown of the seedling's terminal bud is carefully protected.

Small seedlings: Carefully position the shelter over the seedling, taking care that the crown remains inside the shelter. A fragile seedling may require the use of a stake to help support the shelter.

Larger seedlings: The branches should be compressed to protect them from damage and to ease the installation of the shelter. Installation of the shelter under freezing conditions should be avoided due to the high risk of damage/injury to the seedling.

BASE PROTECTOR     - Read more
Barren soil types , short annual growth
One piece , closed model
Height 17 cm ( 7 " )
Diameter 6 – 9 cm ( 2 ½ " – 3 ½" )
600 pieces / package
12000 pieces / pallet
Biodegradable within 4-7 years

NET PROTECTOR     - Read more
One piece net, closed model
Height 60 cm ( 24 " )
Diameter 11 cm ( 4 ½" )
1000 pieces / package
8000 pieces / pallet
Biodegradable within 10 years

TRUNK PROTECTOR     - Read more
Rank soil types, long annual growth
One piece , closed model
Height 28 cm ( 11 " )
Diameter 6 – 9 cm ( 2 ½ " – 3 ½" )
480 pieces / package
9600 pieces / pallet
Biodegradable within 5-8 years

Moose damage

Moose (Alces alces) are the cause of the most damage in forest tree stands. Moose move mainly at dusk (in dim light) and late at night. They prefer quiet, peaceful forests. Having recently become more accustomed to humans, they also browse near populated areas if there is a good source of food. The majority of damage caused by moose in the summer is to birch trees and in the winter to pine trees.

These tree species are often found in well-maintained forest stands. Certain tree species such as aspen, mountain ash and willow, as well as other hardwood species can quickly become scarce, even though the moose population is sparse. Moose rarely touch alder or spruce. In the summer, moose migrate in a predefined area and return to familiar forested areas in winter, creating a higher concentration of moose in the winter.

During winter, an adult moose eats approximately 900 kg of bulk. The amount of food available depends on the depth and hardness of the snow, as well as on the amount of ground cover and tree growth. This means that a few hectares of trees can provide enough food for one moose for an entire winter.

During winter harvesting, it is a good idea to leave or lift branches and buds to the surface of the snow, because moose can derive much nutritional value from the branches. This, in turn, helps to preserve the smaller seedlings and ultimately the tree stand.

Moose damage typically recurs in the same areas year after year. Financially, moose cause the most damage to tree stands with seedlings 80-300 cm in height. The end result is loss of growth and timber stock quality problems.

Growth loss often occurs when over 30% of the seedling's chlorophyll area or needle growth is damaged. The more of the seedling that is damaged, the more growth problems and quality defects exist. Quality defects are most easily discerned by curves in the tree's trunk. This is important because the financial value of the tree is determined by the quality of the tree stump. Quality defects also appear in the form of decay or dark blemishes caused by fungi in the core of the tree and in the trunk. In the worst cases, the entire tree stand is destroyed. If, due to moose problems, a tree species is chosen which is not the best species based on soil and nutrients, it is difficult to develop a cost efficient and productive forest.

The amount of potential moose damage depends on the size of the moose population. The presence of hardwood seedlings among pine stands increases of the risk of damage, as moose are particularly fond of hardwoods. Damage usually occurs to the smallest of seedlings, which tend to grow on the perimeter of mature forests. Hunting is a necessary part of moose population control. Under ideal circumstances, landowners and foresters should cooperate in reducing potential damages to forest/tree stands. It should be noted that landowners receive compensation for damages caused by moose from hunting permit fees. In the long run, it would make sense to collect reserves for the advance prevention of moose damage, thereby reducing both the overall cost and extent of damage.

Protection of tree stands requires both mechanical and chemical methods. Chemical repellents have been in use for some time. Seedling buds are sprayed or brushed with repellents during dry weather in the fall. The overall effectiveness of the repellents is based on either smell or taste. A double electric fence can be effective, but it requires constant surveillance and regular maintenance. A steel game fence is sturdy, but it requires a large financial investment. Lighter fiber or plastic fencing materials can work for a short time, and can be strengthened and made to last longer by tripling the amount used and by maintaining them well.

Deterrence systems based on sound only work for a short time because moose quickly become accustomed to the noise. Mechanical tree shelters allow for a high level of protection for both pine and hardwoods. In addition, the shelters prevent moose from eating only the buds, instead allowing them to eat the branches. This ultimately prevents the moose from moving to a new browsing area and causing even more damage.

When considering using shelters to control moose browse, a minimum of 1000 seedlings per hectare should be protected. In practice, this means that approximately every other seedling should be protected. This will keep the total cost of protection at a reasonable level. In this manner, trees damaged or destroyed by moose can be removed during normal maintenance or thinning of the tree stand. Under these circumstances, damages to unprotected seedlings will occur at a height of 80-300 cm above the surface of the ground and thus can be easily detected.

Shelters for hardwoods should be placed at a height that corresponds to the new terminal bud growth in July and August, as soon as the stems are able to support themselves and branches have developed.

Shelters for pine seedlings should be adjusted sometime during September-November, at the end of the growth season. The shelters do not need to be placed any higher than 2 – 2 1/2 meters from the ground. Once the shelter reaches this level, it should be left in place in order to limit breakage and damage by moose to the trunk of the tree. The actual colour of the shelter is of no importance with regard to the moose. The colour may be chosen based on easy visibility (blue) or to blend in with the environment (green).

Use of shelters significantly reduces damage to seedlings, but it does not replace the need for regular tree stand inspections.