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Posts Tagged ‘Mersey Valley’

The wildlife area at Chorlton Water Park has been developed in conjunction with the RSPB over the last few years, mainly for educational purposes.  Today we helped with some maintenance: planting, mulching, laying new woodchip on the paths, and clearing debris from the dipping pond.  And there was plenty of spring wildlife to be observed while we were about it!

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Our first activity of 2017: some work on the willow groynes at Chorlton Water Park!  These groynes are important in protecting the banks from erosion and providing a valuable wildlife habitat.  There was only a small band of volunteers out today but a pleasant misty winter’s day and some good work done!

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Today SACV members were out with the Friends of Chorlton Meadows.  We haven’t worked on this pond for the past couple of years, but as in 2012 and 2013 our task was to clear some of the reeds and overhanging willow in order to maintain an area of open water.  Without this, the pond will continue to close in and silt up, and might gradually cease to be the important habitat it is, including for the variety of birds – such as reed warbler, reed bunting, water rail and willow tit – which can be sighted here.

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In what is becoming an annual activity, this past Sunday we were out in Chorlton Water Park helping with the maintenance of the woodland walk.  We got a good section of the path done, so thanks to those who turned out in what had  been looking to be a weekend of variable weather!

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Today we were back at Chorlton Water Park to continue work on the new wildlife garden being created here in conjunction with the RSPB.  We planted a few wildlife-friendly trees and shrubs and finished building a flowerbed mound where our plantings included flowers such as cowslip and ox-eye daisy.  We then helped finish the bog garden around the new pond – and added wetland plants such as marsh marigold, water avens, ragged robin and flowering rush.

It was good to see the willow arch (which we constructed in December) looking healthy and sprouting well, fulfilling its function as the entrance to this developing wildlife area!

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Today SACV members teamed up with the Friends of Chorlton Meadows (FoCM) for some hedgelaying on the aptly named Hawthorn Lane.  The long stretches of hedge alongside the lane have been neglected for many years but FoCM and the wardens have started laying parts this autumn and winter.  Because of the age and thickness of the stems, this was a challenging hedge to work on (but it wasn’t all manual work – we did have a lot of assistance from a chainsaw!).  However, some good progress was made and there was even some root-laying done.  FoCM might manage more work on the hedge in the remainder of the winter and doubtless SACV will perhaps be back to work on it next year too!

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A day at Chorlton Water Park on Sunday 13th December marked the end of SACV’s activities for 2015.  We worked on maintaining the willow groynes at the edge of the lake, which provide an important habitat for birdlife and spawning fish; using the cut willow, we then created a willow arch which will provide a living entrance to the new wildlife garden being created in conjunction with the RSPB.  Then, to finish the day, we had our annual Christmas get-together with plenty of mulled wine and seasonal delights – all of that, plus a 40th birthday to celebrate!

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