Peabody is working with the London Wildlife Trust and Thames21 to make improvements to Butts Canal. This will help increase biodiversity along the canal system. The word ‘biodiversity’ relates to the variety of plant and animal life in a particular habitat.
Butts Canal’s vertical concrete edges are unable to support a variety of wildlife. To help increase biodiversity, we needed to create new habitats for wildlife.
To achieve this we have installed coir rolls with aquatic plants that are interspersed with hazel faggots at the edge of Butts Canal, off Bentham Road. Coir rolls are logs made of coconut fibre, straw, or other biodegradable fibres woven into a tube. Once planted they quickly provide vegetation. Hazel faggots are typically made from bundles of hazel, chestnut and willow brushwood tied together with rope that we fix along riverbanks.
We have used all natural materials to enhance this edge. The plants in the coir sections will provide excellent cover for birds, invertebrates, fish and mammals. The rolls are currently covered with a mesh fencing cover to help protect the plants until they are well established for the wildlife to use. The hazel faggots in between the coir rolls provide a habitat for small fish and invertebrates.
This will create new habitats for local wildlife between the grass edge of Butts Canal and the water, so we’ll be monitoring progress in the area closely.
If you’d like to get involved in similar projects, please contact Toby Dighero from Thames21 on 07968 805751.
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