Ron's Pond restoration
Restoring Ron's Pond for the Nightingale Project
Published: 23rd Feb 2022
Work on the overgrown and silted up area once known as Ron's Pond began this month as part of our Nightingale Project. We are creating an open area of freshwater which is known to be a key ingredient in the preferred habitat of nightingales.
This project is funded by the Government's Green Recovery Challenge Fund. The fund was developed by Defra and its Arm's-Length Bodies. It is being delivered by The National Lottery Heritage Fund in partnership with Natural England, the Environment Agency and Forestry Commission.
Bernard Perry Ltd were contracted to undertake the landscaping which involved removing trees, emptying the old pond of silt and clay, re-profiling the edges and creating areas of deep and shallow water. Following consultations with charities such as the Somerset Ornithological Society and the Somerset Archaeology and Natural History Society, the work was carefully and sensitively undertaken to avoid disturbing or destroying any other habitats. Our thanks to Bernard Perry and Viridor for their support in helping us to achieve this and for working together to enable the work to be completed so efficiently within the restrictions of the landfill site.
The pond, which is connected to a small stream, is already filling with water, and a week after the contractors left a pair of ducks have already been spotted scouting out a possible new home. The banks will soon green up and provide cover for small insects, mammals and pondlife. We know there are already great crested newts on site so it will be interesting to see whether they migrate to this new area.
The next part of the project will involve the planting of a large area of scrub. Nightingales' ideal habitat is an area of quality open water with thorny scrub nearby which can provide safe nesting and roosting areas. Work is continuing across the site, with the help of our volunteers, to connect several fragmented copses to create a habitat corridor which will also link up with surrounding landscapes and the local Carymarsh Nature Reserve.
We look forward to seeing how this area changes through the year, what wildlife we may see here, and we will all be keeping our ears keenly pricked for that beautiful song.