These trees were planted as a commerical crop often on land considered unproductive for other farming. Unfortunately many of these plantations are on rare habitats such as blanket bogs and heaths. These more natural areas were replaced with rigid rows of conifers not native to Wales.
However, these confier areas do have value to some wildlife that has adapted to these new forests. Red squirrels now depend on conifer forests to survive, mainly because they are unattactive to the introduced Grey squirrels. Several birds of prey such as Red Kites and Goshawks need the tall conifers to make their nests. While the dark and shade under the thick evergreen canopy prevents the growth of many plants, they can contain many species of moss and fungi. This shelter also allows insects, particularly mosquitoes and midges to fly in bad weather and this can be a vital food source for several species of bats.
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