Froglife, in partnership with Sheffield City Council ecology unit, have successfully secured funding from the Veolia Environmental Trust and the Environment Agency to create 34 ponds and enhance terrestrial habitat along a 4km stretch of the city between Woodhouse Washlands and Holbrook Marsh.
The project will seek to engage local and national businesses, conservation organisations and other stakeholders in collaborative land management partnership working. It will also engage local schools and the community in education on the target species and the importance of wildlife corridors.
What is Happening?
Over the period of the works you will see:
- As part of regular management works on the pylon wayleaves by National Grid there will be clearance works to keep the power lines safe. This will include tree and scrub removal.
- New wildlife ponds will be created, using a mechanical excavator, to create fish free, low nutrient ponds.
- Trees will be removed to allow more sunlight to reach the ponds which will promote the growth of aquatic vegetation.
- Timber from the trees will be left on site and stacked to create hibernation spaces for reptiles and amphibians.
- As part of the project 7000 replacement trees will be planted in hedgerows and as standard trees including the UK’s rarest native hardwood tree the Black Poplar, which used to be typical of lowland River Valleys such as the Rother.
- The project also aims to create new habitat for other rare species such as Harvest mouse and Willow tit as well as rare butterflies and insects that have local populations in the Rother Valley.
Why are we doing this work?
Ponds and their surrounding habitats are very important for reptiles, amphibians and many other species. This project seeks to connect and expand two isolated populations of the protected Great Crested Newt species through the creation of breeding habitat and the management and establishment of a wildlife corridor.
Due to natural succession many ponds become very shaded and full of high nutrient leaf litter, leading to increased algal blooms, shallower water and lower plant diversity. This means that their value to aquatic vegetation and amphibians declines. By removing some trees now, leaf fall will be reduced meaning the ponds’ lifespan will be increased.
For more information please email: firstname.lastname@example.org or contact Sheffield City Council ecology unit: 0114 250 0500