19 February 2014

The price nature pays

I had a spring in my step today, no easy task in wellies, but that soon dissipated when I heard the sound I hate more than any other in the world.  Even more than Mr Yap or drunks shouting at each other early in the morning: Chain saws!

The Corporation was at it again, this time in the little woodland south of the Police scrape.  Bushes where sparrow liked to have a communal chirrup, understorey where Garden Warbler, Blackcap and Lesser Whitethroat all sang from - and may well have nested in - was being dragged up and chopped up.

The geezer with the chain saw came out of the bush he was trashing when he guessed I might not be too pleased with events.

His defence "it's open space!" Then pointed towards the play area.  "You've got the kid's play area there"

To me it was still quite clearly a wood and judging by the age of some of the trees had been such for a lot longer than the 2-stroke engine he was using to destroy parts of it. "You've got plenty of woodland in the forest" he correctly postulated. I explained it was the very margins that he was so intent on destroying that were the best parts of any forest. 

He was after all only following orders. Of  f****ng twats I pointed out.

He went back into the bush to deliver up open space where there was none before, while I walked off seething. They will be back during the week to take out a heap of birch near centre road, in the SSSI, to help the spread of heather.  Tim's already warned them off the main birch copse because of the Willow Warbler, whether they actually heed anything we say we will find out soon.

Later I met up with Jordan, and I presume Tibo, wandering across the flats on their way to inspect the work.  He explained a rough sleeper had threatened a keeper with a knife there, but its mainly down to the strange men (never seen any) who loiter in the undergrowth.  That's what did for the scrub around the Jubilee and for previous attacks on Long Wood.  Policing the area might be a more environmentally friendly way of doing things, but the Park's police are seldom seen down this way and there aren't enough of them anyway.

This is the thing, virtually every user of this park comes here without thinking twice about the consequences of their actions on this fragile place.  There's nothing new in it, it's the human way, and always nature gets barely a second thought.

I put together this little map of the trashed areas in the last 6 months and its a sizable chunk of habitat that's gone.  It may come back, it may get managed into the ground. I doubt it will solve any problems perceived or otherwise.

Blue areas = trashed, Red = to be trashed

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