WILDLIFE with BADCOG

Blofield and District Conservation Group

More wildlife survives in these villages than you might at first suspect.

The plants and animals that are left however, are of increasing value, both for their own sake and ours.

BLOFIELD HEATH takes its name from the old Mousehold Heath which once stretched as far as South Walsham, but which, sadly, is all but gone.

Although the village now is mostly garden and farmland the way is always open to improve these habitats for the benefit of wildlife, and BADCOG (Blofield & District Conservation Group) is a group of volunteers, which for several years has been aiming to do just that.

Our sites include HOLLY LANE POND, which has been restored for moorhens, water plants and dragonflies, and HOWES MEADOW, a water meadow with marsh orchids, cuckoo flowers and meadowsweet. A stream through the middle supports reedmace, flag iris, frogs, and damsel flies. The ancient hedge, which is the best in the vicinity, is composed of hazel, maple, sloe, holly, dogwood, bryony and honeysuckle. Yellowhammers, whitethroats, reed warblers and sedge warblers breed on the site.

SHACK and HOLLY LANES are very old lanes with stitchwort, dogviolet, strawberry, birdseye, and lesser celandine surviving on the steep narrow banks, which would originally have had high hedges arching over. In these days of flailed verges, most flowers and insects have gone. 

BADCOG looks after verges at Lt PLUMSTEAD and HEMBLINGTON, where cowslips, bushvetch, meadow vetchling, sorrel, dogs mercury and woodsage are present. On BULLACE BUSH LANE new oak trees have been planted.

In HEMBLINGTON CHURCHYARD primroses, snowdrops, bluebells, crosswort and star of Bethlehem survive. 

The graveyard is at least one thousand years old and should be preserved for historical, botanical, and aesthetic reasons. Fortnightly rotary mowings are destroying this habitat almost everywhere.

Much could be done to improve these precious havens. More volunteers are always welcome to assist in this task, which gives you a sense of belonging and ultimately encourages birds and butterflies to appear where there were none before.                                                                                                                                                         Sean Plant 1994

BADCOG contact: Ernest Hoyos 712913