Monday, 2 January 2012

Kidbrooke Nature Reserve: good news for newts

It's good news for Kidbrooke's newts who have been given a brand new pond to wallow in.

The new rainwater filled pond at Kidbrooke Nature Reserve on Rochester Way was excavated after a survey found evidence of Great Crested Newts, smooth newts and toads at the site.

However a number of invasive plants appear to have damaged the population and so a programme of renovation and a new pond were proposed.

Kidbrooke and the nearby Birdbrook Nature Reserves together form "London’s most important assemblage of amphibians" with a large population of wall lizard escapees at the latter site.

Originally the reserves were part of the historic Kidbrooke Marshes but the land was gradually sold off, first to the RAF and then for housing.

There is now no real migration between the two sites, although you will occasionally find the odd newt or lizard making a run for it on the footpath that links between them to the station.

Conservationists have suggested that the council restore a proper green link between the two, but there seems little sign of that just yet.

You can read more about their proposals for the site over here.

But unfortunately if you want to take a closer look at the reserve you'll have to do what I did and peer over the fence. It remains permanently closed to the public.

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