We've started a project to re-introduce a rare aquatic plant on the 200-year old Huddersfield Narrow Canal in Stalybridge.
Thanks to the funding from SITA and the help of volunteers we can re-establish Luronium natans and try to help return this SSSI back to its previous condition, creating a beautiful canal for people to enjoy Chris John
We're want to reverse the long term decline of the rare aquatic floating water plantain, Luronium natans, and help protect the other native plants and insects which it supports. Floating water plantain is native to Europe and Britain’s canals provide one of its most important habitats.
The project is supported by £100,000 from the SITA Trust through the Landfill Communities Fund and will see our volunteers and ecologists undertake a mix of physical works including; dredging, cutting back overhanging vegetation which blocks light to the canal and creating reserve areas to enable the replanting of the rare plant.
We've been working with Chester Zoo and other partners, to assist in the conservation of native species. As part of the project, the zoo has been growing plants in ponds, behind the scenes, which will be used to re-stock the canal once the habitat improvement works are completed.
Chris John, national ecologist at the Trust said: “The Huddersfield Narrow Canal is designated as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) for its range of aquatic plants and is also home to a range of other wildlife including mallards and moorhens to dragonflies and kingfishers.
“Thanks to the funding from SITA and the help of volunteers we can re-establish Luronium natans and try to help return this SSSI back to its previous condition, creating a beautiful canal for people to enjoy.”