Wildlife Conservation Group in the

Forest of Dean


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24 March 2015

Greathough Brook, Piano Corner

Grid Ref SO621154


A lovely day for the team to scramble up the high bank and expose it for the conservation of the Wood White butterfly. This site is one of the most likely sites for the Wood White to flourish, so, apart from removing the small trees and shrubs on the bank, we also cleared down some of the numerous leaves allowing an open aspect.

We went round the area with large, black plastic bags to remove all the litter - it is annoying that we actually managed to fill three sacks with old bottles, cans, paper and debris plus half a dozen old tyres!







The team positioned themselves at intervals along the bank to remove the unwanted shrubs.





We found this Coltsfoot (Tussilago farfara) growing on the side of the track.

Coltsfoot grows abundantly throughout England, especially along the sides of railway banks and in waste places, on poor stiff soils, growing as well in wet ground as in dry situations. It has long-stalked, hoof-shaped leaves, about 4 inches across. This felty covering easily rubs off and before the introduction of matches, wrapped in a rag dipped in a solution of saltpetre and dried in the sun, used to be considered an excellent tinder. It was used as one of the most popular of cough remedies. It is generally given together with other herbs possessing pectoral qualities, such as Horehound, Marshmallow, Ground Ivy, etc.






Although the weather does look glorious in this image, we did have quite a severe hail shower during the day!


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