US social scientist Kenneth Boulding : ‘If you believe exponential growth can go on in a finite world, you are either a madman or an economist’.

Wednesday, 10 March 2010

4, 9 and 10/3/10: Cray and Thames Road wetland work

Out with the Cray Riverkeeper Volunteers (we had a decent splash in the hard copy and on-line News Shopper last week - )
On the 4th we were picking litter from the river and banks just downstream of Crayford Town centre.

On the 9th there were only three of us, including 'Boss' Ashe Hurst. We were cutting Common Reed and Great Reedmace in the Thames Rd wetland site.

Thames Road wetland panorama

This should have been done last year really, not least because the Reedmace seed heads were now disintegrating, and the tiny 'feathered' seed was getting in our hair, up our noses and in our mouths - even when trying to work 'upwind' of the stems! The ground, Teasel and Burdock heads up on the sewer bank have been covered in this 'grey snow' for days now.

Great Reedmace seeding - this stuff has been used in bouyancy devices .....

I also managed to lose my concentration for a fraction of a second, lost my balance and got a load of water down one side of my chest-waders. Fortunately I had fleece-lined footwear with me, so was able to walk home without the wet sock on and without my foot getting frozen.

On the 10th I was the only volunteer to turn out and Ashe had to go into central London to pick up some kit. I spent several hours carting dumped tyres and rubble from the shady side of the sewer pipe bank round to the south-facing Thames Rd side, then digging them into the slope to make reptile cover/basking sites, as pictured below. In the process I inadvertently disturbed a small (less than 1 year old) hibernating Smooth Newt, which I put into one of the tyre set-ups for safety.

Recycling for reptiles - dumped tyres and rubble used to make cover/basking sites. Common Lizards, in particular, like to bask on tyres, as they warm up quickly.

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