Backwater

Scrapes 2 and 3 of Wiltshire Wildlife Trust’s ABBA project will be backwaters lying alongside Lambrok Stream. A backwater is essentially a shallow pond connected to a waterway, providing still-water habitat away from the flow and turbulence of the main stream.

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Southwick Show

Volunteers from the team of conservationists who care for the upkeep of the Park had a stand at Southwick Show on Bank Holiday Monday August 29th. To the relief of the volunteers, the weather was lovely and the visitors were very supportive.

Thanks to all the contributors, we had an excellent selection of goods for people to buy – which they did and we raised £200 for the purchase of additional plants for the Park.

Joan Jones (Chairman FoSCP)

This record-breaking drought is drying up the reserve’s ponds and streams. Please help us maintain the quality of what little water is left by keeping your dogs out of the pond for the time being. Thank you

Ragwort update from Wiltshire Council:

Wiltshire Council is asking the public to avoid using Southwick Country Park on 5th/6th May due to the spraying of Magneto herbicide to control ragwort. The work will take place on Thursday 5 May and possibly extend into Friday 6 May, depending upon the weather. There will be notices posted in the reserve to keep you updated.

Ragwort can cause serious liver damage to livestock if ingested, so landowners/occupiers have a responsibility to prevent it from spreading to neighbouring farmland. For the last few years it has been controlled in the Park by hand pulling, but this year it is clear there will be too much to pull out by hand with the resources we have.

We ask that the public avoid the Park on 5th/6th May while the spraying is taking place, and apologise for the inconvenience that these works cause.

Access to Hope Nature Centre is unaffected by the works.

Buzz

by David Feather

Donations power The Friends

On Wednesday mornings in the Nature Reserve you might be hearing some new sounds. The Friends of Southwick Country Park Nature Reserve have moved fully into the 21st century by purchasing battery powered hedge cutters and a brush cutter. We have managed to do this with financial help from Wiltshire Council Central Area Board and some thoughtful and generous donations. On Wednesday of last week, we had the opportunity to meet and thank the local couple who have paid for the training of five volunteers in the use of our new power tools.

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Wednesday’s work party task for the Friends was to cut back the tussocks in the set-aside at the top of Kestrel Field and to slow down the advance of the brambles from the hedge between the set-aside and The Arboretum. 

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Work Party

words by Ian Bushell
pictures by Gemma Thorpe

Contrary to dire weather forecasts, the morning was warm with blue skies – most pleasant.  We met up as usual in the car park and we were joined by Countryside Officers Ali and Gemma.  

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Wet Work Party

by Ian Bushell

We had a particularly wet and foul day for Wednesday’s work party. It didn’t stop raining the whole morning. That is two weeks on the trot now and most unusual for the Friends, normally we have good weather days between the bad.

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A short, damp work party report

by Ian Bushell

A miserable morning, cold and very wet, with just the “Three Musketeers” turning up, Frank, Clive and myself.

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