Please help us maintain these beautiful Commons for the benefit of local wild life and people alike. Every donation however small will help us with conservation projects like these across the Commons.
There are two ponds on the Commons. One is a dew pond next to the cricket pitch and the other is called Pallett's Pond and sits adjacent to the Cholesbury Road to Wiggington. There have been a number of pond surveys carried out over the last decade to assess the best way for HCCPS to manage the ponds for the benefit of local flora and fauna.
Historic pond restoration projects have included the removal of a tree from Pallett's Pond to increase light and reduce leaf litter pollutants. Some dominant plants have also been reduced where necessary to increase plant and habitat diversity. The most recent survey has advised proceeding with limited intervention on the dew pond to open up approximately 25% of the surface area by clearing some of the reed grass. The intention is to rotate the area that is cleared annually to minimise habitat disturbance.
Pallett's Pond unfortunately has inherited the invasive New Zealand Pygmy Weed and there is an ongoing project, now in its fourth year of attempting to control and ultimately remove this invasive plant. Access to light has been restricted by covering the pond with black plastic, and though unsightly this seems to be working. The pond has recently benefited from excessive rainfall and its water levels have been replenished on top of the black plastic layer, thus recreating a new pond so far free of NZPW.
The work to bury the black plastic, and landscape the pond edge, was completed on 30th November 2016 which means that the pond is now ready for the winter rains, when the new earth will settle to some extent. We hope the pond will, over the next few months, regain much of its former water depth to the benefit of both the wildlife and the local community.
We are indebted to Isobel Clark for her research on ways of solving the problem, plus the practical help of Marcus Reynolds in providing soil and Philip Matthews for the use of his manpower (thanks, Tom and PJ!) and machinery – all very much appreciated. A real team effort!
If you are interested in helping with our pond conservation work then please email email@example.com