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Volunteers plant 3000 trees for black grouse
4:50pm Wednesday 16th May 2012 in News
The Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust’s Woodlands for Black Grouse Project has enjoyed a successful first year with over 3000 trees planted to improve winter feeding and shelter for the rare black grouse in northern England.
The GWCT’s project, which is supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund, has worked with volunteers to plant small pockets of birch, hawthorn, rowan, alder and willow at several key sites in Weardale and Teesdale where, in time, the buds and berries will provide an important food resource during harsh winter weather.
The generous support of the Woodland Trust, who have donated the trees for all the volunteer planting projects, has been instrumental in the success of the season, as has the cooperation and enthusiasm of the moor owners and farmers on whose land these important new habitats have been created.
A variety of local groups and youngsters have enthusiastically given their time to help create these woodlands including; Stanhope Duke of Edinburgh Group, St John’s Chapel Primary School, Cotherstone Primary School with visitors from Tufnell Park Primary School Islington, Trees for Cotherstone, Moorhouse NNR Volunteer Group, and 1st Barnard Castle Scout Group. The planting events, which were run in partnership with Natural England Moorhouse NNR reserve staff, have helped over 100 volunteers learn about black grouse and their unique place in our upland heritage. Fran Atterton, from the Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust, said, “We have had a really productive season and planted trees in areas which are particularly harsh for black grouse during winters with deep snow. Two winters ago black grouse suffered huge losses because they had no protection and so this project is a lifeline for them. We have also had a lot of fun and it has given the children fantastic insight on a wonderful but very threatened wildlife species.” The Project will run for a further year, with more planting events planned for next winter.
For more information on the Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust’s Woodlands for Black Grouse Project please contact: Fran Atterton, Black Grouse Project Officer, telephone: 01833 651936 email: firstname.lastname@example.org Smallholder Magazine features conservation written by experts in every issue - to subscribe just call 01778 392011 or follow the link above on line