Attentuation 2

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Attention - attenuation part 2.

Stick with it kids, this is verging on the scientific.

Here is the technical drawing of the area…

The graduated bank has various levels on it, which are designed to hold water. Initially there was a soil layer, this was topped up with a layer of sand and a Hessian type material to finish off. Last week sections were being topped of with a gravelly layer. I’m hoping that they are then going to plant appropriately, but I’m assuming that they will.

In time there will be a path along the top of the area which, once built, will give a continual riverside walk from the Wandle to the far end of Wandsworth Park. This is much more satisfactory than the industrial route that is taken at the moment. Until the path is built (which may not be open until the flats are up – which will take 12 months or so) the views of the new bank area are either from the opposite bank of the Thames or a sideways glance from the Wandle spit.

Here is a picture at high tide – pre-attenuation in progress.

The work in the winter did have a detrimental effect on the bird life in the Wandle mouth. Mostly on Pintail numbers. They seemed to dislike the disturbance and I didn't see any there once. They were further up river, but absent from haunts that they had the year before. Hopefully this winter...

And that’s the main gist of it. As the area improves, I may find more pics to post, I may not. At the moment the area is attenuating not much more than litter and river detritus. I’m trying really hard not to start a list for this specific area, which would be just tooooo sad.

Having said that, birds have been using it in small numbers for loafing, mainly Mallard, Coot, Moorhen and Gulls. Occasionally a Blackbird alights, and most days a Heron can be found. Once the area is planted, I guess it’s only a matter of time before the Spotted Crakes and Aquatic Warblers move in…..


Anonymous said...

"The River Wandle is a unique South London chalkstream which flows north from Croydon and Carshalton to join the Thames at Wandsworth. In Victorian times, the Wandle was one of the hardest-working rivers in the world, with 90 mills along its 11 mile length. In the 1960's, it was officially declared a sewer.

First founded in 2000 as the JetSet Club (Junior Environmental Taskforce, Senior Environmental Taskforce), the Wandle Trust is an ecological charity committed to cleaning up the River Wandle in particular, and improving the Wandle Valley as a whole."

As such, other than coots, have you encountered kingfishers or little egrets for example, on your journeys. It may be interesting to note the numbers of other birds, such as those mentioned, which prefer a chalk stream. The water rail although increasingly rare (25-50% decline in the breeding population over the last 25 years) would be a great find!

Parus said...

You know, I was starting to feel sorry for you for a while there. "He must watch the coots so much cos the patch gets nothing else".

Yet you mention "numbers" of winter pintail... Pintail? I'd probably kill for that down at Raphael Park.

Anyway, yeah, the new habitat could be interesting.

Thing said...

@ Anon - (almost) all sightings are fed into Birdtrack, but it only limits it to the 1km square. If anyone needs specific info I'm only to happy to help.

@ Parus - he he he - Patch envy! Pintails are mighty purdy! ;-)

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