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The Wild One: James Cup winner

This year’s James Cup goes to ‘The Role of Wildlife in Sustainable Forest Management. Part 3: Wildlife and its wider role’, by Jonathan Spencer and Andrew Stringer.

By Wendy Necar · April 4, 2023

Above: Authors, Jonathan Spencer, left, when he also received the Cup in 2020 and Andrew Stringer

The article appeared in the April 2022 issue of the Quarterly Journal of Forestry (QJF 116(2): 113-122) and can be read here.

One judge described it as “A valuable source of information and yet also a ‘call to arms’ for all those involved in woodland management to further understand, respect and improve conditions for wildlife and their habitats.”

Another said: “The format made excellent use of tables with reference material which helped to break down the article into the various elements of the ecosystem ‘circle’.”

“A good subject presented in an accessible style,” wrote another. “Has certainly made me more aware of the natural systems in forests.”

Jonathan and Andrew’s article was the conclusion of a three-part series, with ‘Part 1. Ospreys and the forest nutrient mix’, by Jonathan Spencer and Eleanor Tew, appearing a year earlier (QJF 115 (2): 130-137), and ‘Part 2. Beavers, Biodiversity and Forestry’, by Jonathan Spencer and Mark Elliott, in autumn 2021 (QJF 115 (4): 269-76).

Runners up

In second place was ‘How Resilient are Planted UK Forests to Drought? A summary of recent research on Sitka spruce and Scots pine’, by Thomas Ovenden, Mike Perks and Alistair Jump (QJF 116 (4): 256-263).

Of this article one judge said: “Mixtures less resilient to drought than single species stands? Wow! Thinned stands less resilient to drought than closed canopy stands? Wow again! Counter intuitive research results challenge some conventional thinking on adaptation. An excellent read.”

In third place was ‘Lessons from 100 Years of Managing Forest Diversification and Change’ by Sir Henry Studholme (QJF 116 (1): 28-33). One judge praised it as covering “a collective cauldron of current hot topics, all rooted in both the ancient and recent history of the Perridge Estate but with a firm eye on the future.”

We are enormously grateful to everyone who has written for the Quarterly Journal of Forestry in 2022, and to our five judges who read and re-read all features and technical papers appearing in the journal last year. Between them (without conferring) the judges alighted on a longlist of 12 articles.

The James Cup is awarded each year to the author or authors of an article that in the opinion of a panel of judges drawn from the RFS membership, was the best to appear in the journal in the preceding year. RFS members can re-read every QJF article dating back to 2010 by logging in and following the Insights & Publications link.