Boundary House Fen, 3rd July 2021

Back to Boundary House Fen for today's session and just three weeks since our last visit. Once again we assembled at the main Frilford Heath golf club car park before driving around to the ground keepers' compound and walking to the fen from there.

There were around fifteen of us, including Judy Webb - our resident Natural England ecologist. We walked around the perimeter of the course to meet site supervisor Rod d'Ayala at the top end of the work area. Green Gym session leader Eleanor D outlined the basics before leaving it to Rod to detail the morning's tasks. The main task was to rake and collect up the cut reeds again and add them to the main habit piles and also to lay them on the main watercourse and the newer dam. There was some scything on the side too, which Adrian was able to tackle.

The ground was rather soggy underfoot, which is quite ideal for a fen. Indeed, it was good to see that our efforts over the years have been paying off in terms of habitat improvement. Following the break, Judy led us to a patch of the fen where the bog pimpernel herb is becoming established - largely thanks to our efforts and that of the other volunteers here. Keeping the reeds and tree/shrub growth under control and helped by the seeding of the parasitic marsh lousewort which discourages reed growth. It was also great to see so many other wild flowers proliferating, including common spotted orchids.

As per usual here, a couple of us stepped into deep puddles around the stream, up over our wellies, which is of course all part of the fun!

-Andrew


Getting ready at the compound.

Rod's opening address.

Common spotted orchid.

Judy and Rod.

Bog Pimpernel.

Judy's guided walk.

Marsh Lousewort.

Rod tramples some reeds while Lesley and Kevin look on.

Eleanor B, Margaret and Sally mid-rake.

A spider's lair.

Caterpillar? (photo by Kevin).

Grasshopper (photo by Kevin).


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