Conservation Challenge: Friday 9th February

Text by Christina; pictures by Christina and Piers.

On a Friday morning in February, a group of six IOG volunteers joined Suffolk County Council work-party leader Greg and some of his regular volunteers on the boggy grounds of Tiger Hill Nature Reserve. It is a 21 hectare stretch of privately owned land that is full of interesting plants and animals.

On a leafy path, we spotted the stunning yellow brain fungus, which had probably fallen from a tree. Parts of the reserve are within the Arger Fen Site of Special Scientific Interest, where dormice have been seen. Some of today’s work was to plant hazel trees to attract this rare and shy species to this part of the reserve.

Our group began by planting some trees in different parts of the reserve. Some coppicing followed near a fast-flowing brook to create a flight corridor for bats. Some group members spotted a few muntjac deer and we could hear the rasping sound of a jay. We were blessed with sunny spells and mild temperatures.

We are hoping to meet again on 23rd February at Shotley waterfront, when we’ll be erecting some temporary fencing to protect ringed plovers and other nesting waders from people walking their dogs in this attractive area close to Ipswich.