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Reptile habitat management day – Mortimer Forest

This is another great opportunity to get outdoors, meet and socialise with fellow members whilst learning about our threatened wildlife species and their particular habitat requirements. We will be working alongside Sara Pearce Community Ranger of Forestry England in The Mortimer Forest.

This vital work is undertaken by volunteers, using hand tools to minimise impacts.  Heavy machinery (tractors and flails) used at important overwintering and basking sites cause ground compaction can destroy vital habitat structures, resulting in population losses and even localised extinctions.

These winter reptile habitat management days are to hand manage the scrub, regenerating birch, bramble, gorse and bracken.  Forestry England staff have cut back  (chain saws) an area of birch we will be creating refuge piles and hibernacula from the felled timber.  Also creating open secluded basking glades and rides.  If left unchecked these trees will completely shade out  current open heath areas.

This approach not only benefits local reptiles and amphibians but also butterflies, other invertebrate species, ground nesting birds and ground flora.

Tools to be used include a sturdy pair of loppers, bow saws,  slashers, rakes and thick gardening gloves. I currently have a small collection of tools and Forestry England will also have some tools to borrow but if volunteers are able to bring their own tools, this would really help.

Bring a packed lunch and plenty to drink. Also wear appropriate clothing for outdoor weather with stout boots and waterproofs. If heavy prolonged rain is forecast the dates will be rescheduled or cancelled.

If you are interested please contact Nigel Hand (details below) in advance.  (Please note: You must be a HART 2020 member to come along.)

nigel.hand@virgin.net  or mobile 07974121806

 

Winter reptile habitat management day – Mortimer Forest

This is a great opportunity to get outdoors, meet and socialise with fellow members whilst learning about our threatened wildlife species and their particular habitat requirements.

This vital work is undertaken by volunteers, using hand tools to minimise impacts.  Heavy machinery (tractors and flails) used at important overwintering and basking sites cause ground compaction and can destroy vital habitat structures, resulting in population losses and even localised extinctions.

These reptile habitat management days are to hand manage the scrub, (bramble, gorse and bracken), creating open secluded basking glades and rides.  Young colonising birch, blackthorn and ash needs cutting back and the brash used for refuges and hibernacula.  If left unchecked these trees will completely shade out the current open areas.

This approach not only benefits local reptile and amphibian species but also butterflies, other invertebrate species, ground nesting birds and flora.

Members are very welcome to attend one or all dates at both sites.

Tools to be used include a sturdy pair of loppers, bow saws  slashers, rakes and thick gardening gloves. I currently have a small collection of tools but if volunteers are able to bring their own tools, this would really help.

Bring a packed lunch and plenty to drink. Also wear appropriate clothing for outdoor weather with stout boots and waterproofs. If heavy prolonged rain is forecast the dates will be rescheduled.

If you are interested please contact Nigel Hand (details below) in advance for the meeting location of both the sites.

nigel.hand@virgin.net  or mobile 07974121806

 

Winter reptile habitat management day – Ewyas Harold

This is a great opportunity to get outdoors, meet and socialise with fellow members whilst learning about our threatened wildlife species and their particular habitat requirements.

This vital work is undertaken by volunteers, using hand tools to minimise impacts.  Heavy machinery (tractors and flails) used at important overwintering and basking sites cause ground compaction and can destroy vital habitat structures, resulting in population losses and even localised extinctions.
These reptile habitat management days are to hand manage the scrub, (bramble, gorse and bracken), creating open secluded basking glades and rides.  Young colonising birch, blackthorn and ash needs cutting back and the brash used for refuges and hibernacula.  If left unchecked these trees will completely shade out the current open areas.

This approach not only benefits local reptile and amphibian species but also butterflies, other invertebrate species, ground nesting birds and flora.

Members are very welcome to attend one or all dates at both sites.
Tools to be used include a sturdy pair of loppers, bow saws  slashers, rakes and thick gardening gloves. I currently have a small collection of tools but if volunteers are able to bring their own tools, this would really help.

Bring a packed lunch and plenty to drink. Also wear appropriate clothing for outdoor weather with stout boots and waterproofs. If heavy prolonged rain is forecast the dates will be rescheduled.

If you are interested please contact Nigel Hand (details below) in advance for the meeting location of both the sites.

nigel.hand@virgin.net  or mobile 07974121806

Winter reptile habitat management day – Ewyas Harold

This is a great opportunity to get outdoors, meet and socialise with fellow members whilst learning about our threatened wildlife species and their particular habitat requirements.

This vital work is undertaken by volunteers, using hand tools to minimise impacts.  Heavy machinery (tractors and flails) used at important overwintering and basking sites cause ground compaction and can destroy vital habitat structures, resulting in population losses and even localised extinctions.
These reptile habitat management days are to hand manage the scrub, (bramble, gorse and bracken), creating open secluded basking glades and rides.  Young colonising birch, blackthorn and ash needs cutting back and the brash used for refuges and hibernacula.  If left unchecked these trees will completely shade out the current open areas.

This approach not only benefits local reptile and amphibian species but also butterflies, other invertebrate species, ground nesting birds and flora.

Members are very welcome to attend one or all dates at both sites.
Tools to be used include a sturdy pair of loppers, bow saws  slashers, rakes and thick gardening gloves. I currently have a small collection of tools but if volunteers are able to bring their own tools, this would really help.

Bring a packed lunch and plenty to drink. Also wear appropriate clothing for outdoor weather with stout boots and waterproofs. If heavy prolonged rain is forecast the dates will be rescheduled.

If you are interested please contact Nigel Hand (details below) in advance for the meeting location of both the sites.

nigel.hand@virgin.net  or mobile 07974121806

HART AGM

The HART will be held on the evening of Wednesday 3rd June at the Barrels in Hereford. Details will be sent nearer the time. We plan to provide refreshments and have some reminiscences and pictures about all HART’s projects.

If anyone would like to nominate someone to the committee, or would be interested in joining themselves,  please contact one of the committee members listed.

 

2020 is HART’s 20th Anniversary Year

HART was set up in 2000 through the Herefordshire Wildlife Trust and the neighbouring Worcestershire Amphibian and Reptile Group. A 20th anniversary is a good excuse to do some celebrating and we’ll be looking to put on a few events in honour of this milestone.

 

Walk looking for reptiles at Bircher Common

Walk looking for reptiles at Bircher Common     

Sunday 1st September, 10am-1pm

This walk is for HART members only. The event involves walking suitable areas over the common looking for basking, active reptiles and any other wildlife sightings. The walk will be taken at a leisurely pace  There are no refuges such as tins or mats which have been laid down on this site so it will be necessary to walk a fairly wide area.

Please contact Nigel to let him know if you intend coming in advance by email nigel@centralecology.co.uk or phone 01531 636033  /  07974 121806.

If the weather is forecast for rain all morning and conditions considered poor then the event will be cancelled.

Directions

Follow the B4362, turn down the lane with war memorial at entrance, signposted Welshman’s Lane, Bircher Common. If  travelling from Mortimer’s Cross, Lucton direction the lane turning is a left turn, otherwise a right turn, continue down lane until it opens on to the common, be careful as it is a narrow lane to the common so beware of resident traffic and possible pedestrians.

Arrive at common opening, gated entrance with cattle grid, red telephone box, turn right after going over a cattle grid, carefully travelling along the rough stone track onto the common, you will then see other HART members parked in front of gorse at grid ref SO 4660 6630.

 Bring snacks and something to drink.  Wear suitable clothing and sturdy boots and trousers.  Close focusing binoculars would also be useful.

It is advisable not to bring dogs and only older children accompanied by adults ideally aged 10 years onwards.

Ice-Age Ponds visit at Sturts South Nature Reserve

Ice-Age Ponds visit at Sturts South Nature Reserve                  

Sun 7th July,  11am-3pm

Will Watson and Giles King Salter will lead a walk round some of the Ice Age Project’s Ponds that can be found at Sturts South and Waterloo nature reserves.  There will be a chance to do some dipping and explore these hidden reserves.

Wear appropriate clothing and bring a packed lunch.

Parking:
The Rev. Charles Overton at Waterloo has given permission to park 8 to 10 cars beside the lake at The Vallets, Waterloo. Located at SO329476 on the west hand side of the road from Letton to Kinnersley at Waterloo where there are only two large properties fronting the road; one of which is the Vallets, look out for a modern brick wall and a cattle grid, it is sign posted.

Bioblitz at Birches Nature Reserve

HART will be joining in with Herefordshire Wildlife Trust’s Family Bioblitz at Birches Farm Nature Reserve, in celebration of The Wildlife Trusts national  30 Days Wild Campaign.  Join us in recording as many different species as we can find alongside a team of experts & enthusiasts.  Catering & toilets will be available on site.  Bring suitable outdoor clothing & a picnic if you wish but no dogs please!

Birches Farm is situated  on the A4111 on the way to Kington, Herefordshire – Post Code HR5 3EY.

https://www.herefordshirewt.org/bughunt

Ice Age Pond Project Training Day

A chance to learn about the fascinating world of Ice Age Ponds, how they were formed, their wildlife and geological origins, and how we can help to conserve them for future generations. Learn why they are so special and how to identify the wildlife that can be found.

Morning Indoor Session

  • Introduction to the Ice Age in Herefordshire and the landforms it left behind
  • Introduction to Pond Ecology
  • Introduction to field survey techniques for Ecology and for Geology

Afternoon Session

  • Practical demonstration and chance to have a go at doing Geological recording, soil core samples using augers, GPS recording of water levels and water quality testing.
  • Practical demonstration of Ecological recording techniques, habitat mapping, dipping for invertebrates.
  • Training in the use of GPS, Water quality meters etc will be given.

Training lasts from 10.00am – 4.00pm and all equipment, plus hot drinks and biscuits will be provided. You will need to bring suitable outdoor clothing and a packed lunch.
These training sessions are all free but places are limited and booking is essential.
To book your place or find out more details please contact David on 01432 356872 or e-mail d.hutton@herefordshirewt.co.uk