Friday, 4 May 2012

Three weeks behind

Friday 4th May 2012
                            These grey very cool days are continuing and today's temperature of only 7c and this has been typical of this spring over the last 3 weeks.
                   I took a look at my secret Early Purple Orchid site in a moorland valley a few miles from the town of Burnley in Lancashire and they're 3 weeks later than last year, the flowers were thin on the ground with only10 spikes showing this year compared to over 20 last spring. The site, under stunted hawthorn trees suffers  tramping from Roe Deer which shelter under the rough canopy in the winter months. 

    The lower part of the Pennine valley as it loses its identity in Burnley

                   The scrubby habitat of the Early Purple Orchids

             I've taken on a new project this year along with some other members of Burnley Film Makers, we're recording the progress of the River Ribble Trust who are in the development stage of our Urban River Enhancement Scheme (URES), supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund as well as several partners including the Environment Agency and Local Authorities. The scheme is about improving the river habitats in Burnley along the banks of the two rivers which flow through the town.  Their aim is to bring Salmon and Sea Trout back into the towns rivers which have for the past 100 years been channelised and are very unattractive, some fish passes have already been installed but more are needed.
      This is a 3 years project but our objective is to produce a short promotional film for Nov.on this years progress, it will be submitted to help to obtain more funding.
               Perhaps in the next few year Salmon and Sea Trout will again be spawning in our moorland streams as they did centuries ago.


  1. Lovely to see your beautiful pics of early Orchids..wish we had them down here.

  2. David:

    Brilliant to find this blog, and particularly the news that you're involved in documenting the effects of the Ribble Trust's enhancements works. As a professional river ecologist born in the town, I'm very proud to know that there is investment in improving the river that gave its name to Burnley. I remember, as a child, the Brun running thick with ochre from Bank Hall and Rowley, and then being forced into a narrow concrete channel through the town centre. Amazing to think that salmon and sea trout might once more pass through these reaches to spawn upstream. Good luck with the filming!