Group dis­cover life in their pond

Sur­vey finds sev­eral species in pond

Rutherglen Reformer - - News - Dou­glas Dickie

The pond in Holmhills Park was given the seal of ap­proval dur­ing an Open Air Lab­o­ra­tory ( OPAL) work­shop.

The event , or­gan­ised by Cam­bus­lang Com­mu­nity Coun­cil’s sub group Friends of Holmhills Wood Com­mu­nity Park and was led by SLC Coun­try­side Rangers Kerry Thom­son and Louisa Mad­di­son.

Open Air Lab­o­ra­tory sur­veys are en­cour­aged and led by the Im­pe­rial Col­lege in Lon­don who are funded by the Big Lottery pro­ject.

SLC Coun­try­side Ranger Ser­vice helps to pro­mote this by of­fer­ing free OPAL train­ing to lo­cal com­mu­nity groups.

The Friends of Holmhills Wood put their science hats on and com­pleted the ‘How healthy is our pond?’ sur­vey. This in­cluded three ac­tiv­i­ties which was a clear wa­ter check, the pH of the wa­ter and a health check of the pond.

The sur­vey score re­vealed the pond to be ‘quite healthy’.

The group found sev­eral wa­ter species in the pond. They found newts, dam­sel­fly nymphs, wa­ter boat­men and wa­ter louse, to name just a few.

Once the sci­en­tific re­search was com­pleted it was recorded onto the OPAL web­site by the Friend of Holmhills Wood group mem­ber Andy Wil­son, and is now part of the OPAL na­tional records. The pond health re­sults are now on the na­tional sci­en­tific data map.

Group mem­ber, Michelle Farmer, was amazed by all the species found in the pond with just one net dip

She said: “This is a fan­tas­tic learn­ing ex­pe­ri­ence for lo­cal chil­dren and adults to dip into.”

SLC Coun­try­side Ranger Louisa Mad­di­son was de­lighted to take part in the sur­vey: “Citizen Science projects such as those by OPAL are a great way to get all peo­ple in­volved with con­tribut­ing to science knowl­edge across Scot­land.

“The sur­veys are fun and easy to do.”

It’s an ex­cit­ing time for the Friends group who have also an­nounced Holmhills Wood CP are due to be re­fur­bished soon as part of the na­tional Liv­ing Wa­ters pro­ject, with the es­ti­mated com­ple­tion date around Easter 2016.

Fu n d i n g for the pond re­fur­bish­ment has been se­cured by reg­is­tered char­ity and con­ser­va­tion or­gan­i­sa­tion FrogLife.

The Holmhills Wood ducks, duck­lings, deer, frogs and other lo­cal in­hab­i­tants will en­joy hav­ing a newly cleared pond to move around in.

In ad­di­tion to the pond sur­vey, other lo­cal com­mu­nity and Friend of Holmhills Wood CP group mem­ber, Ju­lian Mor­ris re­cently com­pleted a tree sur­vey in the park and other group mem­ber, Ali­son Park, is cur­rently com­pil­ing a phase one sci­en­tific sur­vey also.

Watch out for fu­ture Holmhills Wood Com­mu­nity Park events on the Cam­bus­lang Com­mu­nity Coun­cil Web­site.

Wa­ter lot of fun Kerry Thom­son and Karen Smith check out what they’ve found Up close Andy Wil­son makes sure he gets a good look at what he’s found Wildlife Woods

Net gain (from left) Kerry Thom­son, Andy Wil­son, Michelle Farmer, Ali­son Park, Karen Smith and Louisa Mad­di­son

This lit­tle fella was found at Holmhills

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