June 15th 2024

Call For Canal To Become Wolverhampton's Newest Nature Reserve

Councillor Phil Bateman and Councillor Dave Jones, City Councillors with more than a 'green tinge' to their reputations said today "We would like to see the Great Wyrley and Essington Canal running through Wednesfield North declared Wolverhampton's Newest Nature Reserve."
Councillor Bateman explained why this particular section of canal should be treated in this way. He said " This canal is in essence a broad wildlife corridor and it is very important as such.

Not only is it rich in birdlife such as Coots,Moorhens,Mallards, Canada Geese and Mute Swans.It also attracts other birds such as Herons, Great Tit, Blue Tit, Long Tail Tits, as well as Chaffinch, Mistle Thrush,Song Thrush, House Sparrows,Green Finch, Gold Finch and Linnets and much more.

It is also home to a wide variety of fish such as Perch, Roach, Pike, Gudgeon, and Carp.

I have also seen fox sleeping in reed beds, water vole and last summer spotted a weasel who very quickly leapt into the hedge!.

During my correspondence with the BWB about the influx of foreign water weed that is choking the canal at certain times of the year. I asked about the sightings of one of Britain's rarest mammals... the Otter.

BWB tell me and I quote we have "heard about the potential Otter signs at Wednesfield "but they have not yet confirmed this. However they go onto say," it is possible as there has been much activity this winter and they are increasing their range into the Black Country."

Dave Jones said "With this very important creature appearing to be in our back yard the time is right to create a further nature reserve along this length of canal.

English Nature recommends that 1 ha of Local nature Reserve should be provided for every 1,000 residents. Wolverhampton I understand falls below this standard by 194ha.

This canal is a wonderful resource for the people living in this side of the City. It should be managed as such and its special species significance should also be protected and enhances."

Last word falls to Phil Bateman who said " This canal if it were to be declared a Nature Reserve links lots of urban areas with more rural locations,creating much wider networks of green corridors."

Author: Phil Bateman

Article Date: 30th March 2007