ECONET   Conservation Volunteers, Reading, Berkshire
Conservation of the Natural Environment
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CROW (Conserve Reading on Wednesdays)
Wednesday, 31st August 2016
Padworth Common ~ Bracken bashing

Following our task at Padworth at the start of August when we had begun to clear an area of bracken on the north side of the Common, we returned to complete the task.

The cut material was stacked in heaps where it will gradually decompose.

In the mean time the heaps do have other uses.

While the Common is home to adders these are of little risk to volunteers. A far greater danger especially at this time of year is the possibility of disturbing a wasp's nest such as this one which had previously exposed as a result of either human or animal activity at the edge of the area in which we were working.

The occupant's seemed remarkably indifferent to the arrival of a camera within a couple of feet of what remained of the nest.

By early afternoon all the bracken had been cleared apart from around the edge where it was to be left to provide habitat.

The area had at one time been heathland but had become covered with Scots pine and birch most of which has now been removed to be replaced by bracken. Small pockets of heather do remain and if the bracken and re-emerging birch can be controlled these should spread allowing the heathland to be restored.

Created: Saturday, 3rd September 2016
Photographs: Alan Stevens, John Lerpiniere