A guide to deciding what sort of grazing best suits your woodland

This guide to developing a Woodland Grazing Plan is designed for woodland owners, managers and farmers seeking to manage their woodland to achieve biodiversity and/or cultural heritage objectives, using livestock as a management tool.

Grazing with livestock is only one of many tools available to woodland managers. Before going any further consider whether livestock grazing is likely to be right for your woodland. If it is, the toolbox will help you to determine the most suitable grazing regime.

Using the toolbox

The toolbox has eight sections, each of which corresponds to a section of your Woodland Grazing Plan (see template provided below). Download the template then use the guidance here to help you complete each section.

Step 1: Download the Grazing Plan template

Step 2: Work through the online guidance to help you complete the plan

The eight sections of the toolbox and the template plan are:

  1. The introduction
  2. General description of woodland
  3. Habitat types and key features
  4. Habitat condition, biodiversity and cultural heritage objectives
  5. Constraints
  6. Grazing management
  7. Monitoring
  8. Actions

Herbivore impact assessment method

The Woodland Herbivore Impact Assessment Method User Guide is a method of assessing and monitoring the impact of large herbivores (cattle, sheep, deer, goats, pigs, horses) on woodlands.

You may want to use the 2014 version of the herbivore impact assessment method to carry out repeat assessments on sites where previous assessments have used this version of the method.


If you would like to make any comments about the toolbox - especially if you have used the toolbox to write a woodland grazing management plan, please email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.