AN ECOLOGICAL project which has already restored seven hectares of lost wetland habitat at Delamere Forest has received a funding boost.
It is hoped rare butterflies, newts and dragonflies will benefit from the two-year Meres and Mosses scheme being run by the Forestry Commission at the forest. The aim of the project is to re-wet 34 hectares of peatland basin within the forest.
Made up of more than 100 of these peatland basins, Delamere is a key wetland site in the UK. However, these watery havens were drained more than 80 years ago for conifer plantations.
The Meres and Mosses project, which is part of Natural England’s £4m Wetland Vision, has already seen the restoration of five bogs, giving a combined area of seven hectares, at Delamere.
Oliver Thompson, Forestry Commission wildlife ranger at Delamere Forest, has secured a further £12,500 from Natural England to enable him to complete the re-wetting. This will be match-funded by the Forestry Commission, Cheshire Wildlife Trust and Cheshire BAP Partnership.
He said: “So far I have been able to re-wet five basins. It is great news that we have been able to secure the additional funding as this will enable us to re-wet a further 14 basins scattered around Delamere.”