Following on from the success of last year’s project that saw over 30 ponds created or restored across South Yorkshire and Derbyshire on behalf of Natural England, Wildscapes CIC have been appointed again to deliver a number of ponds across Doncaster and Barnsley this winter.
The work forms part of an initiative to enable the launch of Natural England led approaches to District Level licensing for the great crested newt (GCN). District Level licensing involves the creation of a large number of new ponds and restoration of those currently deemed unsuitable for use by GCN, and is an alternative to the site by site GCN licensing process which, up until now, has been used for development.
Great crested newts are a European protected species. The animals and their eggs, breeding sites and resting places are protected by law. During the 20th century half of the UK’s ponds were lost and this has been a key factor in the decline of GCN populations. Not only does the District Level licensing scheme aid the development process, it aims to secure the long term protection of this species and their habitat.
Fully funded by Natural England, landowners are not asked to contribute financially to the pond creation/ restoration (or suitable livestock fencing if required), but simply to take a few basic measures to protect the habitat quality of the pond. Maintenance and monitoring visits on a period basis over the next 25 years are also included in the project.
Interested parties in Barnsley and Doncaster are encouraged to contact us to discuss the suitability of their land for the project. More information can be found here.
(c) Philip Precey