Hi Tech in the Marsh

Over the last few years the Marsh becomes very overgrown during the summer months with tall herbage that swamps the more delicate plants such as Marsh Marigold.

The Trust’s present project is to fence the central areas of the Marsh with the purpose of being able to introduce livestock to graze off much of this tall herbage. The fencing is in progress but will take another month or so to complete.

Livestock will include cows, and because they need water, Dan Turner from the Yorkshire Dales Rivers Trust (he gave the talk and last month’s AGM) has installed a hi-tec solar-powered water pump which means that we are neither reliant on a mains water source nor do we have to allow the cows to drink from the stream.IMG_0420The water quality of East Keswick Beck is currently very poor and is one of the YDRT’s targets for water quality improvement. The water pump with its trough means that the cattle do not need to drink from the beck as their feet and heavy body weights cause “poaching” (puddling of the mud) on the bankside which would wash into the beck which would add to the pollution of the beck.20160617_130925

Hedge Planting in the Marsh

On 27th February, our Friday volunteers enjoyed a sunny day to finish hedge planting along one of the Keswick Marsh boundaries. The hedge is 70 to 80% Hawthorn with the remainder made up of six or seven other hedging plant species such as Hazel, Spindle, Holly, Blackthorn and Buckthorn. Since the hedge in the Marsh, hedging in Elliker Field has been completed.

Hedge planting

Hedge planting

Enjoying the fruits of our labour

Enjoying the fruits of our labour

 

 

Harvest Mice in the Marsh

After finding possible Harvest Mice nests in the Marsh, their presence has been confirmed by a small-mammal trapping weekend 4th to 6th October.
Visitors from Ossett, Pocklington, Kirby Malzard and as far away as Cumbria attended the joint Yorkshire Mammal Group and EKWT Harvest Mice Weekend in Keswick Marsh.
The Sunday morning proved very successful when 23 of the 50 traps had mammals…
11 Field Mice, 10 Bank Voles, one Common Shrew and one Harvest Mouse.
A Harvest Mouse

A Harvest Mouse

Field Mouse, EK Quarry'_DxO cloned_DxO

A Field Mouse

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Weighing and recording small mammals in the Marsh.