RAUK - Archived Forum - STOBOROUGH HYDE HEATH obliteration

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STOBOROUGH HYDE HEATH obliteration:

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AGILIS
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Posted: 19 Jun 2009

Last week ending May ..well heres a few shots of over management by the RSPB on Hyde heath between Furzebrook road and the A351 at Stoborough that has destroyed habitat of all species of our herps I have seen adders sand lizard lv nats etc on this Clearance area couldnt manage by hand had the f**king bulldozers in might just as well set fire to the place!! And is a larger area and worse then the photos depict well done RSPB cant have done the birds any favours.what do you think


AGILIS39985.4143518519
   LOCAL ICYNICAL CELTIC ECO WARRIOR AND FAILED DRUID
Iowarth
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Posted: 20 Jun 2009
Hi Keith
Sorry I have been so slow to respond. All of my limited spare time has been spent amending even more of the code on the site to try and make everything work right on the new server.
Back to your piccies though, I must say that does seem more than a little heavy handed. I am quite astonished. Quite apart from the fact that I would have thought ground nesting birds would have been in the middle of that. Ah well, looks like the nesting birds and a goodly number of strictly protected endangered herps are now part of the mud!
Seems to me there is a world of difference between management and destruction. It is hard to imagine that the RSPB would do such a thing - probably their mistake was to leave it to contractors.
Chris

Chris Davis, Site Administrator
Co-ordinator, Sand Lizard Captive Breeding Programme
AGILIS
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Posted: 21 Jun 2009
hi Chris yep heavy handed sums it up in more polite terms, I was stunned when I see it as I only get a few weekends in the south these days and have visited this area over many years from boy to old boy , and found it very depressing to think that this wide spread destruction is happening everywhere all the time these days. I see no probs thinning out gorse and over grown brambles that can swamp areas, The so called Rspb management must know that this is also habitat for herps animals and birds alike, what ever happened to man power armed with billhooks I am sure that there are still volunteers around with some form of conservation skills?..

AGILIS39985.2778819444
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GemmaJF
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Posted: 21 Jun 2009

It's down to cost Keith, same thing all over. Same sort of treatment of Danbury Common and Backwarden. Yes it needed management, but not like this.

What we loose is the soil structure too, it took years to form and is the reason we find herps on heaths and not in arable fields. Now some of these heaths have less value than an arable field.

But it is cheaper to get the job done by sending a contractor to bulldoze the site.

 

I've said it before and I will say it again, IF A DEVELOPER DID THIS THEY WOULD BE IN COURT - so why are the 'wildlife conservation organisations' getting away with it?

Longterm gains... no I know enough sites now that have had this sort of treatment in the past ten years where the animals are simply EXTINCT. Gone for good. The 'management' funding stream has dried up and it is reverting to gorse scrub. Conservation gain 0, negative effective 100%

Keep posting up the pictures Keith, one day they may even listen.


Gemma Fairchild, Independent Ecological Consultant
Suzi
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Posted: 21 Jun 2009

Keith,

You do realise that the photos you took show how naturally grazing cattle keep the heaths as they were in days of yore? They do this in Devon too. I am very impressed with how they push all the bits they can't chew into tidy piles like you have photographed


Suz
Iowarth
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Posted: 21 Jun 2009
Damn clever these cows!
Chris Davis, Site Administrator
Co-ordinator, Sand Lizard Captive Breeding Programme
wellies101
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Posted: 21 Jun 2009
Have they explained (on-site) what work was done and why?
GemmaJF
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Posted: 21 Jun 2009

[QUOTE=wellies101]Have they explained (on-site) what work was done and why? [/QUOTE]

Are you being serious?

The work that was done was a bulldozer was used to clear annoying gorse (the same gorse that produces fantastic underground root systems used by native herptiles and provides essential cover)

 

The reason, because they got given some money to do it.

 

And before you come back on me Wellies... show me the pre-works survey report, you know the one written by a professional reptile specialist who surveyed the site (at the correct times of year and with sufficient effort) before they sent the diggers in.........

Welcome to the real world of conservation in action. I really should dig out some of my photos. The one of the Fire brigade doing their best to save a piece of heathland that was set light to by 'conservation volunteers' as I stood and watched after I repeatly stated over several years on this forum that Essex Wildlife trust should not light fires each spring during the spring adder emergence right next to the main hibernacula in an area surrounded by gorse and dry bracken comes to mind... Or perhaps the photographs of the 'professional worker' at the controls of a tractor trashing adder habitat, who stated in an email that he saw, 'lots of adders in the area' and when challenged by myself to stop trashing the area stated 'this isn't adder habitat'.

I had over 50 survey records for adder in that area. Guess what, not seen one there for three years.


Gemma Fairchild, Independent Ecological Consultant
AGILIS
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Posted: 22 Jun 2009
On the other hand perhaps this has been cleared for a nature centre to inform people about the now exstinct animals that once lived on the insitu site keith
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Peter
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Posted: 22 Jun 2009

I wish I could say that this suprises me but unfortunately it doesn`t.

 

Conservation in action indeed.

Superb timing on the contractor`s behalf, affecting the widest diversity of wildlife possible.





armata
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Posted: 22 Jun 2009
Me say nothing!!
'I get my kicks on Route 62'
AndyS
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Posted: 22 Jun 2009

Hi Keith

I always think when something like this happens, it needs to get into the Local papers at least, stating the legal infringements and as you have photos and knowledge maybe let the paper know what they ( heathland terrorists) have done wrong? in the name of conservation, raise a bit of a stink about it

As the old saying goes, if it aint broken, don't fix it!!


armata
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Posted: 22 Jun 2009
I should say something. A few years back I did a survey for the RSPB here and identified the core areas, i.e. hibernation areas, main SL laying areas, including the big knoll.

Keith, was the knoll touched? This holds/held a high density SL population.
'I get my kicks on Route 62'
will
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Posted: 22 Jun 2009
Outrageous works; put it alongside the 'controlled' arson at Arne (see my post from last August in 'method and management'.  With 'friends' like this, what lizard / snake needs enemies ?  If it's down to the RSPB, why can't they employ an in-house herpetologist ? - they have such a big responsibility outside the world of birds (and make good publicity from being custodians of biodiversity in general, too.)
AGILIS
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Posted: 22 Jun 2009
hi Tony I am not familiar with the knoll but have more then likley walked on its vicinity keith
   LOCAL ICYNICAL CELTIC ECO WARRIOR AND FAILED DRUID
wellies101
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Posted: 23 Jun 2009
[QUOTE=GemmaJF]

Are you being serious?

The work that was done was a bulldozer was used to clear annoying gorse (the same gorse that produces fantastic underground root systems used by native herptiles and provides essential cover)

The reason, because they got given some money to do it.

And before you come back on me Wellies... show me the pre-works survey report, you know the one written by a professional reptile specialist who surveyed the site (at the correct times of year and with sufficient effort) before they sent the diggers in.........

Welcome to the real world of conservation in action. I really should dig out some of my photos. The one of the Fire brigade doing their best to save a piece of heathland that was set light to by 'conservation volunteers' as I stood and watched after I repeatly stated over several years on this forum that Essex Wildlife trust should not light fires each spring during the spring adder emergence right next to the main hibernacula in an area surrounded by gorse and dry bracken comes to mind... Or perhaps the photographs of the 'professional worker' at the controls of a tractor trashing adder habitat, who stated in an email that he saw, 'lots of adders in the area' and when challenged by myself to stop trashing the area stated 'this isn't adder habitat'.

I had over 50 survey records for adder in that area. Guess what, not seen one there for three years.

[/QUOTE]

Gemma, I only asked to try and get a clearer picture as I'm not familiar with the site, thats all. I apologise for trying to get details to take a more informed viewpoint.

I can see the work was done by plant machinery.

If the work was done to remove Gorse, I believe they should have done the area shown by hand, being more selective and less damaging to the habitat. However, I would still like to know why they chose the plant machinery route. Don't shout at me, I'm saying that choice looks very wrong in this case, but all I have seen is photos from one side of the argument.

AGILIS
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Posted: 23 Jun 2009
hi all again this is the sort of thing thats happening all over and work carried out by so called text book conservationists, also I must mention the Hankley common golf club again, that has destroyed acres of sand lizard /adder lv sloworm ca habitat this last few years by extending their links into the heathland with impunity from the MOD or the pathetic English nature no one raises a eybrow to it , what you expect probably the local MP and local councillers are members of the club on ""expenses"". These are endangered and protected species , except when some one wants around of golf ,,but I bet if you took one from the common for its safety and got caught you would be taken away cuffed up to Farnham castle,awaiting deportation keithhahaAGILIS39987.4647685185
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GemmaJF
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Posted: 23 Jun 2009

Why the sarcasm Wellies, as you are a ranger I assume you are a paid 'conservationist' - if you cannot see from the pictures that this sort of work is inexcusable, that the timing is wrong and that the work is in simple terms 'illegal' under the WCA due to the known presence of protected species then all it does is confirm what I have suspected for a long time regarding people like yourself.

'if the work was done to remove Gorse' ... why do you think it was done, landing pad for UFOs?

Please do get off my case, I know now who you are. Try getting up to speed on this issue instead of protecting those involved and looking for justifications (I also know you lied when you told me you had no connection with SWT on the other thread, their loyalty isn't as strong as yours lol), this isn't one case it is one of hundreds, this stuff  happens every day of the week and plenty of us here want to see the issue aired in public.

Actually personally, I want to see the perpetrators prosecuted under the WCA. Perhaps it is time to start contacting the contractors and letting them know the position these 'conservation organisations' are putting them in.

You got a copy of the pre-works survey report yet then?

GemmaJF39987.7073263889
Gemma Fairchild, Independent Ecological Consultant
Vicar
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Posted: 23 Jun 2009
Just declaring an interest here, and to attempt to inject some objectivity.

Wellies101 is currently undertaking a SARG reptile training programme, which he has paid to do out of his own pocket.

As part of the programme, he has given up his free time to conduct multiple reptile surveys across five core reptile sites in Surrey, and is our fourth most active surveyor.

He first contacted me offering his site as a receptor site for herps. He has taken on board all advice provided, has established his own survey at his site, and has detected the first reptiles recorded there for almost 15 years.

If this is a profile of 'the enemy' then we can all pack up and go home. This chap cares about reptiles and is learning all he can about them.

Steve Langham - Chairman    
Surrey Amphibian & Reptile Group (SARG).
Vicar
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Posted: 23 Jun 2009
Hi Keith,

Have just checked the records for the area that I think you refer to on Purbeck. If I've got the right place, it's full of Sand lizard records that any desk study would have thrown up immediately.

I'd suggest you contact the Dorset Amphibian and Reptile Network (DARN). They can't replace the damage, but that could investigate and make a pain of themselves so it's not instantly repeated next time the contractors are out?

Steve Langham - Chairman    
Surrey Amphibian & Reptile Group (SARG).

- STOBOROUGH HYDE HEATH obliteration

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