Tree Pruning can be a wild business!

It’s not unusual for a Tree Surgeon to be given a nickname, quite often involving the term ‘monkey’ or ‘tree monkey’…they’re regularly accused of monkeying around in trees!

However, for our most recent job, pruning trees at a local forest has indeed been watched over by some real monkeys (technically, they are Barbary Macaques) and they soon showed us who’s the best at climbing!


Our team of tree surgeons are some of the most agile, sure-footed climbers I’ve ever watched and always seem completely at home up in the canopy, swinging around, leaping from branch to branch. But when we arrived at Trentham Monkey Forest, it soon became clear that we were surrounded by experts, most of whom were quite literally born to climb!

If you’ve not seen our team of professional Tree Surgeons climb a big, mature tree in order to prune it, I can assure you it’s worth watching.

Every job begins on the ground – there’s the Risk Assessment to go through, a thorough check of all the kit, decisions about whose turn it is to climb, where are they going to access the tree, who is going to spot for them on the ground (it can be quite tricky to work out which branch is which once you’re in amongst it all, 50 foot up!)…

Then the harnesses go on and the real fun begins!




Quite a lot of the deadwood was taken out using hand saws and the Macaques were happy to hang around watching, however, once the chainsaws came out and were fired up, it was only the truly brave who stayed around.

One particular young male was determined not to leave and spent most of the morning sitting in the top of his chosen tree, peering round the corner every time a limb was cut and dropped to the ground. He never flinched, never looked concerned, simply sat eating his breakfast and monitoring the situation!

Tree Heritage get to work in some incredible places – one day it’s a beautiful private garden, the next it’s a National Trust property with a canal running through it, but some days, it gets really wild and you’ve got monkeys watching your every move!

This was a most unusual job – our main priority was to ensure that the trees alongside all the paths were deadwooded, tidied and made safe for the visitors to this 60 acre site. Yet this needed to be balanced with the Macaques need for a natural, challenging environment where fallen trees are left in situ and broken branches are their playthings.

Whether you’ve got 60 acres of challenging woodland or one very important tree at the end of your garden, this is the ideal time of year for it to be checked and any remedial work to be done – preferably before we get our share of winter high winds and heavy downpours.

If you’d like us to come and tidy your tree or trees before the winter, then get in touch:

Tree Heritage – Talk to Us

Thanks to Matt and all his team at Trentham Monkey Forest for giving us the opportunity to work somewhere really special – if you haven’t been, check their website for opening times and get yourself immersed in a wonderful, wild wood!!


One of the senior Macaques came across to have a word with the boss and once he was reassured that the team knew what they were doing, the work commenced!

Because these were some quite large trees, a catapult was used to get a throwline up into the first major branches. This lightweight line then has a climbing rope attached to it which the Tree Surgeon ties onto their harness and then there’s a lot of hard work to get up into the canopy.

Whilst this was going on a group of Macaques had happily run up to the top of a neighbouring tree, back down again, across the path and up another tree – they’re a smug lot!


Can you spot the Tree Surgeon in the canopy?





Click here for more information: Trentham Monkey Forest