In partnership with West Berkshire Council the Wild Verges project will run from 2020 – 2023, and will create a network of wildlife-friendly habitat along roadsides which will support crucial pollinators like bees and butterflies.
This network of verges will also act as corridors allowing birds and small mammals to move and thrive, contributing to the future Nature Recovery Network.
Working closely with the Thames Valley Environmental Records Centre (TVERC), BBOWT will first undertake a rapid assessment of West Berkshire’s 1100km road network to identify priority road verges for wildlife.
From 2021 - 2023, comprehensive road verge surveys will be carried out, with the help of local volunteers, to ascertain whether greater plant and animal diversity can be supported on these potential priority verges. The verges will be monitored to help West Berkshire Council achieve a gain in biodiversity along its road network in the future. Innovative and cost-effective road verge management techniques will also be trialed.
“These are important habitats that are worth protecting and restoring,” says Dr. Prue Addison, BBOWT’s Director of Conservation Strategy.
“Our partnership with West Berkshire Council will make it possible to achieve significant gains for wildlife in the wider countryside so that wildlife is no longer struggling to survive in isolation.”