Bark stripping by deer and other mammals may not only impair the future quality of wood but also influence tree survival. Large-scale bark stripping can thus impact forest functions such as wood production and protection against natural hazards. As for now, research into causes of bark stripping behaviour has not led to a coherent functional understanding, although the behaviour is more common in artificial stands offering poor forage. The present study of intensive bark stripping in ash stands shows that such behaviour may also occur in deer wintering areas where habitat quality is supposed to be good.

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