Pond life, rat runs and sweetpeas
THE speaker at the last club meeting was Paul Ross, a good friend of the club.
He came to talk on the pond newly installed in his garden and brought a bucket full of water and pond life!
In order to develop a pond in his garden Paul had to demolish a shed which was home to a family of rats. He had to clear out the rat runs much to the disgust of his jack russell, and dig the required 2.5 x 2.5 metres which he could accommodate in his garden.
Around the pond he planted a great deal of flowers which attract butterflies and insects and in the pond itself he set water plants which would attract pond life.
Paul put on a video showing the variety of plants which he designed to flower at different times of the year, buddleia, nettles, astilbe, flag iris, poppies, sweetpeas, honeysuckle and more.
From the bucket he had brought Paul scooped out mugs of water into plastic tub’s which proved to be alive the small creatures – water boatmen, leeches, fluke threadworms. These little creatures had arrived very quickly once there was plant life in the pond. There were no fish permitted as they eat everything that Paul wanted to see living in his new pond.
Following refreshments, raffle and notices about the forthcoming tea to Western Turville, Bob and Paul discussed the on-going work in the River Misbourne, to clear it from overgrown banks and rubbish. There is also a project monitoring the invertebrates now able to populate the river, which unfortunately include’s the invasive pest the American Signal Crayfish.
It appeared that several streams and rivers which used to flow freely are now chocked with reeds, brambles, rubbish and more and can no longer support pond life. All water, weeds and creepy crawlies were returned to the bucket and transported safely home after a very informative and amusing evening.
The club resumes on September 13 with a visit from Councillor Mimi Harker from Chesham District Council. New members or guests are always welcome.