Volunteers hedgelaying at Honiton Bottom in winter 2015

Never a quiet moment for the hardy men and women who give up their time to look after East Devon’s wild spots

Volunteers for East Devon District Council’s Countryside Team are taking advantage of the autumn and winter months to carry out a whole range of tasks to ensure that the district looks outstanding all year round.

There’s never a quiet moment for the team and its volunteers who are carrying out the majority of the habitat management work at this time of year as it’s outside the bird nesting season.

There are two groups of volunteers who help to look after the district and they meet most weeks. The Seaton Wetlands volunteers meet mostly on Tuesdays and help manage the site for visitors as well as for wildlife. The East Devon District Council (EDDC) Conservation volunteers usually meet on Thursdays and their work focuses on local wildlife conservation.

The volunteers enjoy social activities throughout the year as well as discount on some of the Countryside Team events and training courses including first aid, bird watching talks and practical skill sessions.

During the winter months, the team run practical sessions where volunteers can gain new skills whilst helping to maintain countryside sites. On December 3, a course is being held by Windrush Willow on how to maintain a living willow structure. The course runs from 2pm to 4pm at Seaton Wetlands.

EDDC Countryside Ranger Nathan Robinson said:

The team works with volunteers throughout the year and during the winter months we are busier than ever! There are lots of conservation and habitat management tasks which are completed during the autumn and winter when nesting birds have fledged. We have a busy programme of conservation tasks to get involved with  and we welcome new volunteers who will learn new skills and meet other like minded people.

To find out more about volunteering and Countryside events please visit wildeastdevon.co.uk.

Courses can be booked online at wildeastdevon.co.uk. Further information can be found online or by contacting the Countryside team via email: countryside@eastdevon.gov.uk or phone: 01395 517557.