News - February 24, 2016

‘In the dark forest at 7 am’

Koen Guiking

Last week Jan den Ouden, teacher forest ecology and forest management, led journalists through the biggest practice forest of the Netherlands. How did it go?

Photo: K. Vliet

The reports show that the journalists had a great day. How did you like it?

‘I have guided more journalists, but it remains special. We were in the cold, dark forest at 7 am, in order for the reporters of Radio 1 and Omroep Gelderland to report in their morning programmes. We were occupied until half past one speaking to the other press.’

What did you show the journalists?

‘In the practice forest – in which we work together with Staatsbosbeheer, Van Hall Larenstein university of applied sciences and mbo-institution Helicon – they had to perform an assignment that our students also receive. They had to select which trees had to be felled to create more room for other trees. The goal is to increase both the ecological quality as well as the financial value of the forest.’

Does all that media attention lead to anything?

‘It is surprising how many people have heard or read something about the practice forest in the media. If that leads to new students? I do not think so. Although, one journalist with who I had email contact with afterwards told me that his son had looked through the press folder and is now considering to study forest and nature conservation.’