Great News? Great Newts!

Great News?
Great Newts!

Regarding the work that has been carried out on the pond at Geddington Buccleuch Meadows, I see this as a good thing, removing the vegetation that had totally taken over the pond,” Commented Brian Laney, Northamptonshire County Recorder for Reptiles & Amphibians.

The Geddington Volunteer Fire Brigade “remain committed to the development and management of the pond’, said Graham Brown recently, “we had consulted with Brian Laney prior to the initial work being carried out and he kept in touch afterwards. He contacted us fairly last minute at the end of March saying he was in the area and would like to visit, so we met up with him just as it was getting dark, so he could have a look around with his powerful spotlights. We had been down there for about 30 mins or so, during which time he checked the perimeter and did a general reccy of the pond before we made the discovery.” Discovery? This image shows it

a female Great Crested Newt!

The image isn’t great, but it was taken at night, under a spotlight and through water.

Brian also mentioned in his subsequent report after the visit, that: “It’s important to remove (some of) the silt that has accumulated over the years in the pond bottom (Great Crested Newts prefer clear water and a gravel bottom). This silt can be removed in stages, as it is OK to have some silt as species such as the Common Frog, can hibernate in this. It’s best if any habitat management on the pond, is done between October and 1st February, as no Great Crested Newts would be present in the pond, as they hibernate on land in frost free locations.”

He continued, “It’s important the vegetation that covers a pond is kept in check, as it’s important (for some pond wildlife) to have open water, removing such vegetation can, in turn, open up buried seed bank of various plant species, and it will be interesting to see what appears.”

This discovery surely exonerates the GVFB for all the work they had undertaken last year, as Brian has been able to record the first official sighting of the Great Crested Newt and it was done by the official County Recorder. It doesn’t get much better than that!

Some images of the planting work carried out in February 2017.

The result of February’s planting session

Images taken in May 2017:

And how it looks now: