Derby City Pond Warden Association - Winter 2014

Pond Dipping Advice

The best time for pond dipping is between the months of May and August, when the aquatic invertebrates are at their most active and the amphibians, such as frogs, toads and newts, have completed their breeding cycle. It is also the best time to view the aquatic plants when they are out in flower, thereby making them easier to identify.


The Long Eaton School Pond - 13th October 2014

DCPWA was contacted by Mary Shaw, Science-Environmental Technician, to provide some maintenance advice on a well-established pond with a dipping platform and adjacent marsh area, sited in the school grounds close to the Erewash Canal. Maggie Cooper and Derek Golson visited the site on a wet and windy day, and noted that the pond was about 20m in diameter, butyl-lined with vegetation in the forms of yellow flag iris, curly waterweed and glyceria. A quick pond dip yielded dragonfly larvae, pond snails, water boatmen and stickleback fish, and we were advised that smooth newts have been found on the site.

Following discussions with Trevor Taylor of DWT on a mini management plan, it was recommended that the following be undertaken

  1. Cover exposed butyl liner with turf sods, to avoid further UV damage
  2. Install new native pond plants such as yellow flag iris (for odanata), water forget-me-not (for smooth newts) and water mint in baskets on the fringes; to improve habitats for invertebrates
  3. Remove all of the invasive curly waterweed in the centre of the pond and replace with rigid hornwort
  4. Remove sticklebacks from the pond and move to the adjacent canal
  5. Remove willow trees from the central part of the adjacent marsh area, and use as log piles around the edges.

Mary Shaw advised at the Pond Wardens meeting on 11th December 2014 that Item 1 had been completed, and that Items 3 and 5 were in progress.

Long Eaton School

The Long Eaton School - Exposed Liner

Long Eaton School Pond

The Long Eaton School - Glyceria

Darley Park Conservation Management Plan - 3rd November 2014

A proposal to create a new pond in front of Darley Barn had been tabled as part of the DerwentWise project at the tendering stage. Financial constraints at the time had seen the requirement withdrawn, but following the award to DWT of the multi-million pound contract, discussions re-started on its re-introduction.

Following discussions between Ali Grimwood, of the Friends of Darley Open Spaces (FoDoS), and Derek Golson of DCPWA, the proposal for a pond was input to a meeting on the Darley Park Conservation Management Plan with DWT and Chris Burnett Associates on 3rd November 2014. We await the next steps.

DANES Insect Show - Derby University on 15th November 2014

Maggie Cooper and Derek Golson represented DCPWA at the Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire Entomological Society annual insect show, which had returned to the Derby area after a couple of years in Nottinghamshire. DCPWA had been represented when the event was previously held at Broomfield College, so it was a welcome return.

An early morning pond dip at the Porters Lane pond in Oakwood had yielded a good mix of amphibians and invertebrates, despite it being in the winter period. These were shipped very carefully by car to Derby University, where they were placed in a tank for the visitors to see. A steady stream of visitors ensued and a few expressed an interest in becoming a Pond Warden. The contents of the tank were carefully returned to their original pond under cover of darkness!

DCPWA Events Programme for 2015

DCPWA members discussed and agreed the Events Programme for 2015 at the last members evening held at the University of Derby on 11th December 2014. The programme is as follows:

Public Events

Member Events

Other events such as Amphibian Surveys, Nature Site Visits and Dragonfly Walks will be arranged nearer the time, based upon member interest.

Committee/Member Meetings

These meetings are to be held at the Kedleston Road campus of the University of Derby.

Annual General Meeting

This was held at our meeting on 11th December 2014. The following members were elected as officers for 2015:

Bits & Pieces

Nigel Barker, our Treasurer and Pond Warden for Sinfin Moor LNR ponds, retired at the end of 2014. Nigel has been with us since the very early period of our formation during 2006 and has been our sole Treasurer, so his humour and commitment to both roles will be sorely missed as he pursues a new adventure in his canal boat. At the last Pond Warden’s meeting of the year, Nigel was presented with a book, tee-shirt and a framed picture of him at work for DCPWA. The role of DCPWA Treasurer has now been passed to Helen Wright, whilst that of Pond Warden for Sinfin Moor LNR resides jointly with Kelvin Lawrence and Barbara Holmes. GOOD LUCK NIGEL AND THANKS FOR ALL OF YOUR SUPPORT OVER THE YEARS.

Nigel Barker

Chairman presenting Nigel with Nature Book

Nigel Barker

Secretary presenting Green Hero T-Shirt

Maggie Cooper and Derek Golson attended the Derby Green Spaces Forum, which took place at Derby University on 17th November 2014.

Pond Warden Vacancies

DCPWA presently have a vacancy for a Pond Warden for the two ponds at Alvaston Park, and also for the last remaining pond at Derwent Green Gym in Chaddesden. The role of a Pond Warden is a voluntary one and aspects of the job can be found on the DCPWA web site ( Please contact DCPWA at , or telephone 01332-830657, for more information.

Want to join DCPWA?

Contact Derek Golson (Chairman) or Maggie Cooper (Secretary) on 01332-830657, or by email at , if you want further details on adopting a pond. Our programme for 2015 is now agreed and covers our quarterly meeting for Pond Wardens, when we will be pleased to welcome any new people interested in joining DCPWA.

A permanent venue for future meetings has been agreed by courtesy of the University of Derby Meetings will continue to commence at 19:00 hours and further details can be found on the Events tab of the DCPWA web site, which is located at

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