The open grasslands at the quarry have unfortunately seen too much human activity during the warm weather, with a lot of the ground smothered by sunbathing. This has taken its tool on the orchids. Fortunately, some have still thrived where there has been no disturbance.
We have spend the last few sessions on clearing the scrub growth from Gun Hill Bank. This area had been cleared many years ago, but the scrub came back when active management was not continued. The aim is to now clear and keep clear, so that this section will be part of the open grassland corridor within the reserve. In time, we should see a restoration of beneficial wild flowers and grasses.
There are work parties every Tuesday at the quarry. The main focus is on controlling scrub in the open areas. The work has continued on opening out the glade adjacent to the playing field. Also, work is now progressing on the slopes of the quarry to control the unwanted cotoneaster and pyracantha to permit the native plants to hopefully prosper!
It has been a bit hit and miss with regards to getting regular work parties running at the quarry site. A well attended session took place on 13-12-2018, under leadership from Brandon. It is hoped that a local work party leader can be appointed early in 2019. Then, we can look forward to running regular sessions at this site
The work on this latest session involved the removal of tall saplings from a glade that is adjacent to the playing field. The cut down material was placed into dead hedging, which provides a beneficial habitat for smaller birds and invertebrates. The cleared ground then becomes a warm glade within the trees that is especially beneficial to butterflies.
The photographs show the end result and the team taking a well earned break.
Nature Forcers have been out the last two Wednesdays opening up a couple of areas on Newbold Quarry.
The small area at the top of the steps from the far end of the car park, and, the larger area above the playing field at the far end of the car park. It is hoped this will encourage the woodland flora.
A few of the small trees have been removed along with quantities of Ivy. The brash has been formed into Dead Hedges to line the paths or form a barrier to the steep drops. These will be useful for small species and birds to nest.