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Woolston Eyes

Lindsey Chapman relives and updates past episodes from the Living World archives. In this episode from 2000 Lionel Kelleway explores a remarkable nature reserve close to Warrington.

Often we think of nature reserves are a product of preserving pristine or unique habitat for wildlife. Yet many nature reserves are products of reclaiming man made activity and letting nature take its course, with a little help. For this Living World wildlife presenter Lindsey Chapman relives the magic of a once industrial landscape which Lionel Kelleway explored in 2000.

Lionel visits Woolston Eyes nature reserve near to Warrington where he meets up with Brian Martin who at the time of recording had been at the reserve for over 20 years recording the wildlife. This reserve is owned by the Manchester Ship Canal company and for years was used as a site to deposit dredging's from the canal. Over the decades as Lionel discovered the site became a hotch potch of heaps and shallow areas which since 1980 when the site began the long process of conversion from the devastation of canal spoil into a wildlife haven, yet only a stone's throw from the Warrington urban area.

Along the way Lionel discovers some of the species which had moved in to make this their home, such sedge warbler and black necked grebe which the site has become an important breeding area for. In summer many butterflies, moths, other insects can be found, including dragonflies making use of the lagoon ponds which have been created on site.

To bring this story up to date since this programme was first broadcast; Lindsey Chapman offers some recent updates into the denizens of Woolston Eyes

Producer Andrew Dawes.

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22 minutes

Last on

Sun 24 Jun 2018 06:35


  • Sun 24 Jun 2018 06:35

Natural Histories

Natural Histories

Nature that has had a profound impact on human culture and society across history.