Wildlife Conservation Group in the

Forest of Dean








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24 November 2009

The area was dotted with small birch and pine. We were relieved to be let off the task of clearing the gorse as we seem to spend a lot of time on sharp, prickly gorse! However, we had cleared gorse here before and it is now not so old and scraggy. Gorse is part of heathland habitat and is only removed when it is large and old.



Grid Ref SO651196

The heathland at Wigpool is really coming on now and the area just needed clearing of the small birch and pine which was starting to get invasive. The heather, bilberry and gorse have fully covered the site now and a lizard was seen as we were working. There is a good display of bog asphodel near the Pit House pond in the summer.

The weather was very stormy with rain blasting us sideways but, as most of us had come wearing our waterproof trousers and jackets, we were well protected and hardly noticed the storm!


General area to clear


Pit House Pond


Pit House pond is the smaller pond at Wigpool as the large Wigpool ponds are as big as lakes. It is a very clean and clear pond.


Fly Agaric Fungus


Fly Agaric Fungus (Amanita muscaria) .

This specimen was found near the small birch trees.

This is a poisonous and Psychoactive Basidiomycete Fungus, one of many in the genus Amanita. Native throughout the Temperate and Boreal Ecosystem regions of the Northern Hemisphere

Although generally considered poisonous, deaths are extremely rare, and it has been consumed as a food in parts of Europe. However, Amanita muscaria is now primarily famed for its hallucinogenic properties with its main psychoactive constituent being the compound Muscimol.






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