King’s Wood near Ashford
WHAT WE DID:
KSCP have created and managed hundreds of ponds over the years. Many ponds have been lost from the countryside since WW2, due to neglect and drying up, or deliberate drainage and filling in. We have tried to put back what has been lost because ponds are such valuable habitats in the wider countryside.
In 2004 we created two new wildlife ponds in King’s Wood, a large Forestry Commission woodland at Challock near Ashford, using ‘puddled’ clay, which is a traditional liner for ponds. In 2009 we created a third pond, this time using a man-made liner, as there had been problems with the first two ponds holding water (puddled clay isn’t best suited to some sites). In 2015 we re-lined the first two ponds with a man-made liner. Due to issues with dogs going into ponds and damaging liners we fenced off the ponds. We worked in partnership with the Friends of King’s Wood, who now monitor these and three other local ponds for amphibians.
Ponds can be oases for amphibians, birds, aquatic plants and insects. New ponds are quickly colonised by wild fauna and flora and can become of value in just a few years, so are a great way to add wildlife value to most sites. Ponds in woodlands can become home to some very specialised species, for example insects that require shady conditions and slowly decomposing leaves in water. The ponds also add interest for visitors and boost the wildlife they are likely to see.
Forestry Commission (landowner), Friends of King’s Wood. Some work was funded by Viridor Credits.