What is the project about?
This project, funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund, will be working with Brighton & Hove City Council and the South Downs National Park Authority to create nine dewponds, working closely with land managers to achieve conservation goals. The project will also be working with local communities to create Neighbourhood Wildlife Corridors, improving local green spaces, parks and school grounds for wildlife. Alongside the habitat work the project will be delivering a wide ranging programme of pubic engagement including working with local groups to gather wildlife memories.
What are the aims?
This project will be addressing the loss of dewponds in the South Downs. It is estimated that 39% of the dewponds in this region have been lost, and many more are no longer visible in the landscape. In addition to reversing these losses the project will raise awareness amongst local residents of the importance of dewponds to wildlife, particularly amphibians. The volunteer training programme will equip volunteers to manage dewponds for wildlife and Froglife will deliver a total of 183 events across the region with over 4,000 residents helping with Neighbourhood Wildlife Corridors and over 600 children benefiting from sessions in schools.
What are we going to do?
Habitat Restoration: We will be restoring and creating nine dewponds across the South Downs at Stanmer Park, Saddlescombe Farm, Newtimber Hill and Devils Dyke. These works will provide vital habitats for our amphibian species and a wide range of other aquatic wildlife. We will also enhance the surrounding terrestrial habitats which will support amphibian migration and our reptile species.
Volunteering: We will be running two-day volunteer training workshops focusing on amphibian and reptile ID, survey techniques and habitat management to help us support and monitor the habitat sites. We will also run volunteer sessions to carry out practical works such as scrub clearance and building hibernacula and basking sites.
Wildlife Gardening Workshops: These are fun interactive workshops offering an introduction to our amphibian and reptile species and how we can manage our gardens or allotments to benefit them and other wildlife.
Neighbourhood Wildlife Corridors: We will be working with local communities to improve connectivity through these three key areas Moulsecoomb, Coldean and Hollingbury. We want to encourage more ponds, bug hotels, wildlife homes and more. Creating even small features for wildlife that connect gardens to country parks and nature reserves is key in keeping our amphibian and reptile populations safe.
Reminiscence Sessions: We will run sessions with older people to capture their wildlife memories in Sussex which we will transform into an artistic and informative display.
Reptile and Amphibian Talks: We will run talks where you can learn more about dewponds, amphibian and reptile ID and habitat management.
Toad Summits: These are a chance for local community toad patrols to meet and share ideas and to encourage new patrols. We will be hosting our first Sussex Toad Summit on 5th February 2022, more details will be available soon.
How to get involved
There are a number of ways you can get involved from volunteering on our habitat sites, helping out at events or hosting a talk or workshop.
If you live in one of our wildlife corridors let us know how you look out for wildlife or contact us to find out more about how you can help.
Please get in touch with our Project Manager email@example.com.
With thanks to our Funders