Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Working for the Duke at Rewell Wood

Five Butterfly Conservation volunteers met near Arundel to work on the Duke of Norfolk’s estate on this cold, cloudless day, ideal weather for a work party. We were preparing new territory for the Duke of Burgundy butterfly, one of Britain’s rarest, there being only 80 colonies in the whole country. The first job was raking the underbrush after the estate workers had prepared a large site adjacent to existing DoB territory. Then we joined the South Downs volunteers who are clearing new rides. This was hard, prickly work as the underbrush was all brambles which had to be cut, beaten and cursed before we could cut and haul the saplings out. Everything was then burned in a satisfying pyre. This should ensure the DoB has a clear flight path for the females to colonise new territory. Just before we left a Red Admiral fluttered around us and landed nearby.
Another glorious sunrise
Before I left I cracked one of the Iron Pyrites nodules. The inside had a silver sheen.
Within a few hours it had oxidised to a golden sheen - Fool's Gold
Rewell Wood
BC Sussex's working chairman, Neil, and Paul showing that rake's do progress.
The Motley Crew: Martin, Roger, Colin, Paul, Neil
goodbye brambles

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