Guernsey Conservation Volunteers give reeds a chance at Marais Rise

October 28th, 2012 by Richard Lord

The Guernsey Conservation Volunteers worked at Marais Rise reed bed close to Belle Greve Bay on the invigorating sunny and windy morning of Saturday 27 October 2012.

A section of the Marais Rise Reed Bed (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

The Marais Rise reed bed is States of Guernsey land that the Guernsey Conservation Volunteers work to maintain and manage.

The volunteers have worked on the Marais Rise reed beds on three occasions this autumn removing brambles and other colonising plants to allow the reeds in the low lying habitat to grow and prosper.

An area previously cleared by the Guernsey Conservation Volunteers with new reed growth (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

The brambles keep growing and at the start of the third visit the volunteers quickly went over the land they had cleared previously.

Angela Salmon, Guernsey Conservation Volunteer coordinator, said “we don’t want the brambles to get a hold again so a couple of us at the beginning of this work party went through the section we had previously cut, to cut back the brambles again.”

Angela Salmon, Guernsey Conservation Volunteers coordinator, working on removing brambles at Marais Rise reed bed (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

“I know the brambles will keep growing back but if every time we come here we cut the brambles down they are not going to get the hold that they did have, and eventually they will get weaker and weaker,” she said.

Kathy Davies tackles the overgrown Marais Rise reed bed (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

“We can only manage this area until January because afterwards we have to avoid it for birds, so there’s a big chunk of the year that we can’t work here. We have to do a concentrated session but then we have all the other jobs that we normally do in the winter,” Angela Salmon said.

Maria Merrien tramples down on the plant material removed from the Marais Rise reed bed in one of the two skips that were filled up by the Guernsey Conservation Volunteers on 27 October 2012 (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

The Guernsey Conservation Volunteers removed brambles and grass that filled two skips, which had been craned onto the site.  All the removed plant material is taken to Chouet green waste site for composting.

The volunteers also collected and removed plastic litter from the site.

A part of the area where brambles and other plants were removed by the Guernsey Conservation Volunteers on 27 October 2012 to allow reeds to grow back (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

“The Maris Rise reed bed is a real focus of ours at the moment,” Angela Salmon said.

“We do like coming down here. It’s one of those sites where you can clearly see the progress we have made,” she said.

Tools of the trade - gardening gloves provided by the Guernsey Conservation Volunteers (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

Guernsey Conservation Volunteers help maintain public land, La Société Guernesiaise reserves, and land belonging to The National Trust of Guernsey.

They get pleasure from seeing the results of their work, and fresh air and health benefits that the outdoor work provides.

A box of sickles used by the Guernsey Conservation Volunteers to clear land of brambles and other plants that need to be controlled (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

If you would like to volunteer with the Guernsey Conservation Volunteers visit their website for further information or contact Angela Salmon by emailing coordinator or telephoning 721163 to find out where and when the next work party meets.

Flourishing reeds at Marais Rise (click image to expand - ©RLLord)


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