Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Building a Dead Hedge in Cullingworth - Sunday 23rd March

Thank you to everyone who came and helped us build the dead hedge at The Dell Woodland in Cullingworth on Sunday 23rd March. The weather was perfect: sunny, dry, and still.

It was great to be getting involved in some practical conservation work, helping to give nature a home in a local community woodland. A dead hedge is made up of cut branches and stems piled up to form a barrier.

Getting started

First we placed strong stakes in the ground, like fence posts. Then we gathered branches, sticks and twigs and weaved these between the posts, making the structure stronger.

Everyone pitched in

The dead hedge soon started to take shape

A dead hedge is like a special den for all sorts of creatures. It will become home to a wide range of invertebrates (bugs and mini beasts), amphibians (frogs and toads) and small mammals (such as mice and voles). It will also help improve conditions for birds, providing a good perching spot for smaller birds.

We made good progress

As well as providing a great habitat for the wildlife, our dead hedge will be an important barrier between the woodland and the houses that back on to it and look much more natural than an ordinary fence. Over time, material in the dead hedge will slowly rot down returning important nutrients to the soil and new cuttings and branches can be added to it.

The finished dead hedge looked great

The finished dead hedge looks brilliant. Well done everyone! You earned the hot chocolate and biscuits! We had some great views of a Grey Wagtail, which was buzzing around the stream in the wood, calling loudly. This noisy cockerel was also calling loudly!

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