Monday, November 20, 2006

Perry Hall Park

The SMURF project reshaped the River Tame through Perry Hall Park, widening its banks and making it wildlife friendly.

Upriver there was quite a wide lake created with shingle beaches. When I first saw this the river was flowing fast through the lake and it seemed unlikely many wildfowl would settle there.

Consequently when somebody flung a shopping trolley in I had mixed feelings - as I had some hopes it would create an island on which birds could nest.

I went to look at the lake yesterday and in the last few weeks it has changed. The river has carved a course through the shingle beach, leaving an island which is gathering mud and I think will soon start growing plants.

Somebody has thrown in something that looks like an industrial trolley. A separate island is forming from a branch and a coot seems to be settling there. Nothing has happened to the shopping trolley and I think it is time it was removed - before next year's nesting season.

So it is possible that an area of reeds and marshland will develop in the middle of the lake around the shingle island - or even an archipelago, a cluster of islands, with the river flowing round the edges.

We had more about SMURF at last Thursday's Perry Barr distict committee. It has moved on to the bureaucratic phase of reshaping planning rules to try to limit exposure to flooding.

That will not solve current problems, like the tendency of the culvert that runs from St Margaret's alongside the motorway through Perry Park to flood.


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