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Recent Tasks

Hover on a small picture for more details, and click for a bigger one. There are also pictures of social events.

Itchen Stoke Water Meadows

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Another weekend of watery fun at our favourite site. Thanks to Anita for the photos.

Netley Common

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After a good start on Saturday, overnight rain gave the bonfire its very own moat on Sunday morning. Four students from Southampton University Conservation Volunteers helped us with the birch cutting, and did a great job. Thanks to Jim for the pictures.

Bartley Heath (North)

photo photo A weekend clearing birch, holly and bramble undergrowth connected up open areas and enabled the cattle to stand some chance of getting to work.

Bartley Heath South

photo photo This task was a diversion from nearby North Warnborough Green, to clear birch around some rather mature hawthorn, sallow and oak trees. One hawthorn is happily growing through a rusting bicycle frame.Thanks to Mark for the photos.

Shedfield Common

photo photo photo The hot weather precluded the usual bonfire, but good progress was made cutting rhododendron and bracken to encourage more growth of heather. Thanks to Jim Coleman for the pictures.

Netley Common

photo photo A small but hard-working team had this bit of the path sorted out in time for the next monsoon.

Fleet Pond

photo photo photo Luckily this time we had the better day of the weekend, and cleared a good area of pine seedlings from the heath. We left some for the local group, who unfortunately may have got rather wet the next day. Thanks to Mark for the pictures.

College Copse

photo photo photo A weekend hedgelaying was reduced to one day by heavy snow on Saturday night.

Gull Coppice

photo photo Part of the work on our latest visit was to create a more open scalloped area, to see what responds to the light. Tree stumps were treated to reduce re-growth, and temporarily covered to keep any rain off.
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We have been steadily working our way around the paths, widening them to allow more light in, and create better access for the public. Thanks to Jenny for the photos.

Little Phrympth Copse

photo photo photo There was a good turn-out here, clearing old larch brash and some birch, with lots of scouts from 1st Bishop's Waltham Scout Group. Thanks to Martin Robinson for the pictures, there are more here.

Sandy Point

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There's much more to do, but two days of gorse-bashing created some more open areas, and should allow more ground flora to come through. A varied structure for the gorse is also good for Dartford Warblers. Thanks to Jenny for the pictures.

College Copse

photo photo A lot of birch was cleared from a coppice compartment, leaving oak and a few hawthorn. It is hoped to use the birch regrowth as feed for the cattle. This is an ancient but neglected source of fodder known as tree hay. Branches are cut in mid-summer and bundled up tight into faggots. They can be stored and used during the winter.
We inspected the plastic deer netting that we put up earlier in the year. It's still in place, protecting a good regrowth of hazel.

Ancells Farm

photo photo photo A lot of scrub clearance has taken place, not all by us.
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On our second visit this year we started on another patch of scrub which covered a bund created when a scrape was dug out. The idea of a scrape is to remove the nutrient-rich top layer so that rarer plants may thrive in poorer soil. It seems to have had the effect of creating a good shallow pond, with various water-loving plants.
The site manager, Richard Hennessey says "I checked in at Ancells today and was blown away by how much you and the team achieved over the weekend, thank you so much for doing such a great job. I would appreciate it if you could pass on my thanks to all involved. Roll on next spring so that we can see what comes up there now!"

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