River Stour war­dens needed

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Kent Business Update - By Molly Mile­hamChap­pell

The Ken­tish Stour Coun­try­side Part­ner­ship is look­ing for en­thu­si­as­tic vol­un­teers to be­come river war­dens. The war­dens would help mon­i­tor and look after their own stretch of the River Stour, which flows through Ash­ford. The part­ner­ship has re­cently started a new Her­itage Lot­tery funded project – Our Stour – which is tar­get­ing a wider au­di­ence to en­gage with the river, help­ing to mon­i­tor and pro­tect its habi­tats and wildlife. The river war­den scheme is one of six pro­grammes which make up the Her­itage Lot­tery-funded Our Stour project. A river war­den takes on wildlife mon­i­tor­ing, re­port­ing land­scape is­sues and lit­ter pick­ing. Each war­den is al­lo­cated their own stretch of the Stour – or one of its trib­u­taries – and is sup­ported in their role after train­ing. No pre­vi­ous knowl­edge, ex­pe­ri­ence or qual­i­fi­ca­tions are needed – only en­thu­si­asm.

For more in­for­ma­tion con­tact the Our Stour of­fice via email to ken­tish­s­tour@kent.gov.uk or call 03000 410 900.

Last week a very large pod of white beaked dol­phins moved through the English Chan­nel off Dun­geness. The pod num­bered around 60 in­di­vid­u­als and although white beaked dol­phins are more or less reg­u­lar in the spring off Dun­geness in small fam­ily groups, this is a very large party re­gard­less.

I say off Dun­geness – this pod was seen by Dun­geness fish­er­men about three miles off the Point and so even on calm sea con­di­tions with pow­er­ful tele­scopes we are still not re­ally able to see dol­phins at that range for us land lub­bers.

White beaked dol­phins are much larger than the more fre­quently seen cetacean off the Kent coast – the por­poise.

The dol­phins are around 12ft long com­pared to the 3ft to 5ft long of the por­poise.

White beaked dol­phins have a white side down the body, quite a large sickle shaped fin and a white area around the beak.

For more in­for­ma­tion con­tact Owen Leyshon, Rom­ney Marsh Coun­try­side Part­ner­ship, tele­phone 01797 367934 or log on to www.rmcp.co.uk

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