Opening up the Ponds

We were out with our team of volunteers again this week, but this time it was more than just a tidy up job.  We’re all very excited about the imminent opening of the last section of Heritage Trail, which we’re now told by our colleagues at TRACKS will be around Easter weekend.

Ahead of the opening, however, there is still a fair amount of work to do, including tree planting, pond management, bridge installation and of course the completion of the path.  The first two of these tasks we are planning on helping out with, and this week work began on a recently dredged pond close to the Kinross end of the trail.

The dredged vegetation on the pond shoreline, with a clear view from the path

The dredged vegetation on the pond shoreline, with a clear view from the path

We have cleared a substantial area of new growth willow from the trail side of this pond to let more sunlight in, and also to provide trail users with a clear view into what is hoped will soon become an excellent pond for aquatic invertebrates including assorted species of dragonfly.

Emerald Damselflies have been recorded in these ponds

Emerald Damselflies have been recorded in these ponds

Further along this new section of trail are 3 ponds that have been part of our insect survey monitoring programme for the last 6 years, and it is hoped that with the creation of a new pond, dredging having taken place in this additional pond as well as some work being done on 2 of the other 3, the series of ponds along this section will provide visitors and trail users with a fantastic trail-side feature to enjoy as they pass by.

The chainsaw was in action throughout the day..

The chainsaw was in action throughout the day..

..as was the Iron Horse, with Katja operating our trusty steed with excellent skill!

..as was the Iron Horse, with Katja operating our trusty steed with excellent skill!

The fire site by the new pond

The fire site by the new pond

David enjoying a laugh whilst hard at work

David enjoying a laugh whilst hard at work

The new pond at present is surrounded by bare ground which provided us with a perfect fire site at which to burn most of the newly cut scrub.

Leo, Alan and David began building up the fire on the bare ground

Leo, Alan and David began building up the fire on the bare ground

One or two more days clearing and burning willow are planned next week, before our 5 days of tree planting commences on 5th March.

An evening fly over by a flock of Pinkies

An evening fly over by a flock of Pinkies

 

About Craig.Nisbet

Reserve Officer Loch Leven National Nature Reserve Scottish Natural Heritage
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