The day started with a live interview on BBC local radio about the Dursley Walking Festival. The segment was 6 minutes long and a chance to tell a lot of people about the festival next week. The show goes out across four counties ... Gloucestershire, Bristol, Wiltshire and Somerset.
Immediately after I set off to Churchdown for some habitat management with Gloucestershire Vale Conservation Volunteers. This is a site we maintain regularly which has great crested newts in the ponds. These are endangered, not only in the UK, but worldwide, so it’s vital to keep the habitat healthy.
The main task was to remove the dominant plants from the water. The main reason for this is because if left, the plants will decompose in the bottom of the pond. This process de-oxygenates the water and life becomes dead.
I spent most of the day in the water in waders, cutting and raking the vegetation to the bank team who hauled it out and stored in piles.
There were 7 of us and it was pretty hard work. We managed to clear four ponds completely, and we noticed dragonflies visiting again once the water surface was clear. This is an ongoing task every year, but so worth it to maintain this vital newt habitat.