New ponds to attract rare birds at Malltraeth, Anglesey

A pond colonised by pillwort The RSPB hopes the ponds will attract birds and encourage plant growth

A total of 27 new ponds have been dug on Anglesey to benefit rare and threatened bird species.

The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) hopes to attract breeding lapwing, of which there are only an estimated 500 breeding pairs in Wales.

It claims 80% of countryside ponds are in poor condition.

Funded through the Million Ponds Project, it is hoped the ponds will also provide a habitat for pillwort, a rare grass-like fern.

Ian Hawkins, RSPB Cymru site manager at Malltraeth, said: "We wanted to create ponds here for breeding lapwing for a long time, but didn't know where to start.

A lapwing There are relatively few breeding lapwing in Wales

"The Million Ponds Project has been very helpful, helping us to make the best possible ponds to benefit these birds, and finding the money to pay for it."

The Million Ponds Project is led by the charity Ponds Conservation.

It says it aims to ensure there are once again 1m ponds in the UK, after many were lost.

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