Risley Moss, Warrington – Scrub Control
Client: Warrington Ranger Service in partner with Lancashire Wildlife Trust
Final Value: £15,000
Start Date: Jan 2020
Status: Feb 2020
Risley Moss country park is located in near Birchwood Warrington and is designated as a Site of Special Scientific Interest and Special Area of Conservation SAC. The area covering 210.5 acres is one of the last remaining active lowland raised peat bogs in the Cheshire area.
Over 200 species of birds have been recorded on the mossland, and the reserve is home to many threatened and protected species, and rich diversity of wildlife.
Targets are set to enhance and protect the site and enhance its biodiversity, and the LNR management plan recommended work on regenerating scrub.
CCNW’s professional conservation team has extensive experience with all aspects of habitat management.
For the Risley Moss project, we worked closely with the client Warrington Ranger Service in partnership with Lancashire Wildlife Trust to implement a coherent plan which met the clients and management plan requirements. The project aimed to carry out scrub clearance to preserve and maintain the lowland raised peat bog habitat.
CCNW carried out the clearance of large areas of scrub and additional habitat management works. The stumps were treated to prevent re-growth whilst the arisings & surrounding brash was burnt on site using burn plates.
The result of the completed works has greatly enhanced the wetland complex delivering a range of wetland habitats with the ability to sustain a variety of wildlife. By creating a better habitat the way is open for the introduction of the Manchester Argus, or large heath butterfly, which is making a comeback locally after an absence of 150 years. It died out as agriculture and other land uses favoured dry peat to the wet mosslands it preferred. As those mosses dried, the butterfly’s food and pollen plants perished too.
The Wildlife Trust for Lancashire, Manchester and North Merseyside and Chester Zoo will reintroduce the butterflies this summer. They have been transported to a special butterfly house at Chester Zoo. They will lay their eggs there, the eggs will become caterpillars and pupate. As the new butterflies emerge they will be released on Astley Moss in Greater Manchester, and also Risley Moss in Warrington.
Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI)
Special Area of Conservation SAC
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