Trois Pignons – 2020 news

For those around Fontainebleau this winter, you may have heard about some “terrible forestry works” or “deforestation” about to happen….lets clarify (for information in French, you’ll find a lot already on existing websites, here, there, here).

So, from the 6th of January to the 10th of March 2020, the french forestry office (ONF) has planned some important forestry works, which will temporarilly and in some ways, permanently change the landscape, and have short and long lasting positive and maybe more challenging environemental impacts which need to be understood.

On this page we’ll let you download the 2 pages document the ONF provided and we have tried the following translation.

For those who can, we strongly advise to participate in one of the following meetings in order to be able to ask all your questions and understand the why, how and possible adaptations to this plan:

3d of January: 7pm, “Salle polyvalente du Vaudoué” Le Vaudoué – meeting organised by an association opposed to most of the work – not sure the ONF will be represented

15 of January: 2-4.30 pm , ONF information at “La Mée (Vaudoué) main car park”

22d of January: 2-4.30 pm , ONF information at Noisy (Cul de Chien) main car park

29 of January: 2-4.30 pm , ONF information at “La Mée (Vaudoué) main car park”

1st of february: Works visit, meeting at 2pm at La Mée car park.

For those who can’t we strongly advise to ask all of your questions to the ONF before the 6th of January, writing at ag.fontainebleau at

The text sent by the ONF: ” Interventions sylvicoles prévues en 2020 sur la forêt des Trois Pignons “

The translation:

Forestry works scheduled early 2020 in Trois Pignons forest

The French Forestry Office (ONF) will start forestry works in Trois Pignons forest, from the 6th of January, on Noisy-sur-école and Le Vaudoué territory. Those works will mostly occurred in the area called “Rocher fin” and along “Chemin de la Mée”. Beyond its social and environmental role, Trois Pignons forest needs forestry maintenance to guarantee its long term renewal. Forestry works has to be thought on a long term basis. Those works are scheduled in a 20 years plan called “Aménagement forestier”. This greatly differs from a day to day management. This document, based on an inventory, offer a scheduled operative plan for most of the forestry works and harvests, environmental constraints, landscape management. Those forthcoming works in Trois Pignons forest were mostly scheduled in the management plan, approved by the French ministry of Agriculture in April 2018.
Usually every tree “field” undertakes management every 8 to 10 years. In this area, due to a specific context, some fields have not be maintained for the last 15 years. This can lead to two type of problems: public safety and forest renewal.
The two main goal of this operation are as follow:
*Restore an area with ecological value — The “Poulette” land has specific vegetation and fauna, typical of open space area. In the absence of management, vegetation overgrow and the areas closes itself. The loss of natural open spaces is directly linked to the loss of bird species like “Alouette lulu” or “Engoulvent”. Scots pines quickly grow in this land and need to be cut to prevent this land closure.
*Improved forest typology and prepare the future — Most of the work will consist in creating 4 m large transect, every 24 m. Those transects allow for wood machinery to get inside the fields while always impacting the same area. They are actually bound to stay overtime. The ONF makes sure they integrate well in the landscape. In addition, some works will consist in removing bigger tree to allow for more light to get in the field and allow for seedlings to grow. The goal is to allow for more tree diversity in species and ages. This corresponds to what’s called “irregular management” in forestry. The volume of tree removed will represent 20% of the total wood volume and less than the forest annual growth.
*The ONF commitment — On area were the public is welcomed, works will terminate on the 10 of March. This will also allow to prevent any environmental impact as bats will terminate to hibernate and migrative birds species will arrive. Due to the high number of visitors, the ONF has preferred to undertake these works through contracting. Cutting and carrying heavy tree trunk can request the use of heavy machinery. Within fields, trees and shrubs will be cut by a machine, and wood will be piled and stocked along forestry roads: chemin de la mée, old chemin de la mée, previous chemin de Melun. 80% of the total volume should be taken out of the forest before summer. As concerned areas are closed to villages, and often used for outdoor activities, the public need to be aware of possible modifications to their schedule. Works could eventually be disturbing: noises, closures…which is also why they will terminate on the 10th of March. Impacted walking tracks and forestry roads should be restored at the end of the work. Everything will be implemented to guarantee maximum safety. Onsite information will always be provided.
More information: public merting at La Mée/Vaudoué parking, on the 15th and 29th of January. Work visit on the 1st of February.

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