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24, chemin de Borde Rouge –Auzeville – CS52627
31326 Castanet Tolosan CEDEX - France

Dernière mise à jour : Mai 2018

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EFFORT Network (Ungulates effect on forest renewal)

Network and its devices names
EFFORT Network (Ungulates effect on forest renewal)
Coordination : Birieux, 01330, France; sites in the north-eastern part of France
Network description

The EFFORT network includes 3 experimental sites, all located in lowland production forests in the north-eastern half of France. It is composed of 2 sites exclusively dedicated to monitoring interactions between ungulates and oak seedlings, and 1 site dedicated to monitoring oak and fir (La Petite Pierre). The network is made up of 24 exclosures, 11 of which are selective exclosures.

It is designed to monitor the installation and then the evolution of the seedlings between the sowing cut and the installation of the final regeneration, as well as the natural dynamics of the vegetation (oak/fir forest regeneration and the associated floristic procession). It is set up in forests of production where data on ungulate abundance exist. Its objective is to monitor the effects of ungulates (and soil edaphic factors) on forest renewal (forest regeneration and plant diversity), modulo the growth of seedlings up to 2 metres and the browsing on them.

Within the experimental sites, study areas of 2 to 3 ha are large enough to be representative of ecosystem responses. Four 312 m² plots and 32 plots of 1m²  were defined in each system. As far as possible (i.e. according to which ungulate species were present), up to five treatments corresponding to (i) with deer, (ii) with roe deer, (iii) with wild boar, (iv) with all 3 ungulates and (v) in the absence of ungulates were established at each experimental site. Each treatment was repeated three times per site.

Services offer

New data specific to the submitted project, compilation of experimental and monitoring data on the sites, implementation of new experiments on the site such as soil biodiversity monitoring (measurement of micro, meso and macro fauna). The chemical and physical parameters of the soil and vegetation will be measured once a year using the NIRS system and phenological and trait measurements. This monitoring of the different soil properties will make it possible to detect direct (trampling) or indirect (via modification of the floristic composition) effects of ungulates early enough and to indicate which property is impacted.

In addition, this innovative monitoring tool makes it possible to identify the impact of ungulates on forest renewal by taking into account the effect of the soil and thus to provide original data on the impact of local, regional or national events (extreme climate, global change, changes in the abundance of individual ungulates, ...) on the functioning of forest ecosystems. Research on the resilience and/or resistance of seedlings to browsing stress is of primary interest with regard to the sustainability of wood production and the definition of forest management policies.


The network is managed by an expert engineer, and 2 permanent technicians (on average 10% each on the EFFORT network) and 2 non-permanent (on average 30% each on the EFFORT network). At the same time, we regularly welcome students.

Work description and access modalities

The average time spent using the infrastructure on a research project is three weeks. The work consists of conducting plant diversity surveys, collecting plant samples, measuring seedling growth and browsing (Consumption Index and Aldous) and collecting soil samples, pre-treating and/or analyzing samples. Our approach is to interact as much as possible with the user(s) to discuss all aspects of the project.

Access units and cost


For some sites: meteorological station, dendrometers, soil moisture content will be required