The Stiperstones & Corndon Landscape Partnership Scheme
There is an allotment visit and four gardening talks scheduled for the next two months. Please see the calendar entries as appropriate.
Pontesford and Earl’s Hill – Dogs and Sheep
We hear in the news now and again of sheep being killed by dogs left running wild in the hills. Unfortunately, within three days of our new Shetland sheep being introduced to their new home at Earl’s Hill one of them was found to have been attacked by a dog. Fortunately Donald survived with a bite wound to his neck, was treated with antibiotics and seems to be recovering well from his ordeal.
At this time of year you can expect to see sheep on the hill as the weather improves and grass and brambles start to grow. They are an essential part of the way Shropshire Wildlife Trust manages the reserve for wildlife. The hill is a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) for its acid grassland and other associated habitats and the sheep graze the brambles, shrubs and scrub helping to keep the varied habitats clear so that the amazing range of grassland flowers and insects we find there continue to flourish.
This can be a difficult transition time for dog owners who have been used to letting their dogs run free across the reserve over the winter. Everyone likes to think their dog is a lovely, playful friend that wouldn’t hurt a fly. However sheep have a natural instinct to run from dogs and this arouses the chase response, part of the hunting instinct, in most dogs. Once that instinct is aroused and the dog starts to run it can be very difficult to get them back under control again. Frequent threats from dogs can cause stress, seriously affecting their health and resistance to disease even if the chase doesn’t cause any injuries.
So please keep your dog on a lead whenever you see any signs saying sheep are grazing or if there are sheep nearby.
Welcome to the new Friends of Pontesford Hill Website.
Pontesford Hill was purchased from the Forestry Commission in 2010 by a private individual who applied for planning permission to build iron age round houses, an amphitheatre and to use the site as a green burial ground.
Negotiations took place with this owner during 2014 to purchase the Hill with an agreement being reached in October 2014. A public meeting was held in Pontesbury in November 2014 to see if the local community would support an appeal to raise £265,000 with a view to placing the property in the hands of the Shropshire Wildlife Trust. This was fully supported and a committee was formed to co ordinate the fundraising activities.
By June 2015 the money had been raised and Pontesford Hill had been secured through the Shropshire Wildlife Trust for future generations.
It is our intention to keep you as well informed as possible on all matter of things relating to the Hill through this website.
We would welcome any constructive comments you may have and what you would like to see included in this web site or referring to matters of Pontesford Hill.