A TEAM of student volunteers from the University of Chester have helped contribute to the conservation of the Natterjack Toad and Mining Bee in Flintshire.
Working with rangers from Flintshire Countryside Services, the team of students and staff from the university spent the day clearing scrub bushes from the dunes at Talacre Beach, which has been designated as a Site of Special Scientific Interest by the Countryside Council for Wales.
The dunes not only provide a natural flood defence, but are also environmentally important due to the rich variety of plants and animals inhabiting the area. The sand dunes once formed a continuous four-mile ridge along the coast, but have been gradually worn away by development and visitor use.
The rangers organised a bonfire to burn off the scrub bushes collected, before taking the group on an exclusive tour of the privately owned and usually inaccessible lighthouse at the Point of Ayr.
The event was the first in a packed programme of volunteering initiatives being organised by the University’s Student Development team for the coming academic year.
Sarah Vaughan, volunteer systems co-ordinator, said: “The student development conservation trip to Talacre was aŠgreat chance for new students to get to knowŠeach other,Šwhile also working to conserveŠthe wildlife inŠourŠlocal coastal area.
“Judging from the feedback we received on the day, everyone who took part thoroughly enjoyed themselves, and several of theŠvolunteers are going to join us again for future conservation events.”