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Improving Marginal Vegetation

2018

Heavy footfall along the banks of the brook led to a noticeable loss of marginal vegetation.  This created additional access points to the brook used by dogs and people. In turn, this exacerbated increased bank erosion, downstream silting, and disturbance to wildlife. The resulting loss of vegetation led to a weakening river bank, making it more susceptible to soil washing away.

Local wildlife relies heavily on marginal vegetation. Water voles, migrating flounder and eel, spawning stickleback, as well as breeding birds such as grey wagtails and kingfishers, and many invertebrates such as dragon and damselflies, are all heavily dependent on this habitat. By improving and restoring the vegetation along the brook we hope to improve and enrich the environment for its wildlife.

The first phase of the work was carried out in winter 2018/2019 and involved moving the path further away from the waters edge and allowing more light to reach the bank to encourage marginal vegetation. The summer of 2019 saw a rapid pulse of vegetation develop within the new margin which was a boon for wildlife, with blackcaps nesting in part of the bramble margin and the swans taking refuge on the now protected stretch of the brook.

Winter 2019/2020 will see us continue the work further downstream and focus upon the reed bed, where paths have eroded into the reed bed and the lack of protection has meant that dog disturbance inhibits any nesting birds within the reed bed.

Improving Marginal Vegetation

2018

Heavy footfall along the banks of the brook led to a noticeable loss of marginal vegetation.  This created additional access points to the brook used by dogs and people. In turn, this exacerbated increased bank erosion, downstream silting, and disturbance to wildlife. The resulting loss of vegetation led to a weakening river bank, making it more susceptible to soil washing away.

Local wildlife relies heavily on marginal vegetation. Water voles, migrating flounder and eel, spawning stickleback, as well as breeding birds such as grey wagtails and kingfishers, and many invertebrates such as dragon and damselflies, are all heavily dependent on this habitat. By improving and restoring the vegetation along the brook we hope to improve and enrich the environment for its wildlife.

The first phase of the work was carried out in winter 2018/2019 and involved moving the path further away from the waters edge and allowing more light to reach the bank to encourage marginal vegetation. The summer of 2019 saw a rapid pulse of vegetation develop within the new margin which was a boon for wildlife, with blackcaps nesting in part of the bramble margin and the swans taking refuge on the now protected stretch of the brook.

Winter 2019/2020 will see us continue the work further downstream and focus upon the reed bed, where paths have eroded into the reed bed and the lack of protection has meant that dog disturbance inhibits any nesting birds within the reed bed.