Volunteers get to grips with removing scrub and young trees along the Roundshaw Woods fence line.

Over the past few weeks the SNCV have been regular visitors at Roundshaw Woods. The team spent several task days getting stuck into removing overgrown trees and scrub, growing against the fence line that borders the site. This stretch of fence-line is an extensive 300 metres, which is why the team needed plenty of time to tackle the overgrown vegetation.

The SNCV usually frequent Roundshaw Woods in the winter months to remove the vast swaths of invasive snowberry that carpet certain areas of the woodland, and to carry out the traditional practice of coppicing. This time, however, the they were helping out Sutton’s Parks Department to keep the vegetation at the fence line under control, and prevent any further damage to the fence.

By removing bramble, snowberry and tree saplings from this area, the team were also able to open up the fence-line habitat and allow more light to reach the woodland floor. This creates temperature differences along the edge of the woodland (microclimates), and warmer patches of exposed earth that invertebrate species can exploit. Suppressing the invasive snowberry from this stretch also helps to encourage native plant growth along the woodland edge.

The results of the team’s hard work

Although the main task was to remove any small trees and scrub from the fence line, the team also managed to remove a significant haul of litter. Volunteers managed to collect bag-fulls of plastic bottles, tin cans and fast-food containers that had been discarded by people walking along the adjacent road.

After completing several task days at Roundshaw Woods (and some chainsaw work on the larger trees), the fence line was considerably tidier and more manageable! The huge amount of litter that was removed should also make the site a much safer place for wildlife.

Eleanor Kirby-Green

SNCV Biodiversity Assistant

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