Despite the difficulties of 2020, we have been able to continue the specialist conservation work at the nature conservation sites we manage in Hampshire. At one of these sites, Eelmoor Marsh Site of Special Scientific Interest, owned by QinetiQ, we have undertaken targeted habitat restoration through mechanical management of invasive grasses, clearance of dominating conifer species and scrub control on open heath.
This winter, we completed over 46 conservation tasks across more than 13 hectares of heath-grassland mosaic, wetland mire and secondary woodland. The works will help to conserve and improve areas for populations such as specialist plants like the insectivorous Purple butterwort (Pinguicula vulgaris), the striking Silver-studded Blue butterfly (Plebejus argus) and the nationally scarce Small red damselfly (Ceriagrion tenellum). The ongoing work continues to maintain and enhance this important ecosystem, reaffirmed by Natural England who granted the site favourable condition status again in 2020.
With the help of our committed contractors and staff, we’re continuing to restore priority habitats for key wildlife communities within these important ecosystems.
Photo credits: Paul. N. Drane and Nick Montegriffo