My wife and I used to enjoy visiting Motcombe Pond, but since it has been vandalised, we no longer bother. Unfortunately, the vandalism was committed by Eastbourne Borough Council. I refer to the cleaning of the pond, the removal of the fish, getting rid of the pond weed that ducks feed on and the destruction of the floating island in the centre.
Apparently this was done acting on the advice of an ecologist. Really? According to the notice by the pond, the project is to increase bio-diversity. I find it hard to understand how turning a once vibrant area into a sterile basin, with no wildlife to speak off is encouraging bio-diversity?
The sludge that was removed has been dumped on the grassed area that was used by children and dog walkers. Apparently, it will be removed when it ‘dries out’. I wonder when exactly the council expect this miracle to occur? I also wonder what will they then do about the grass underneath that has been killed off in the meantime.
The removal of the floating island, which was used by waterfowl to shelter on, was a huge mistake. It has been replaced by a duck house, so small, that no self-respecting MP would even consider claiming on expenses.
Apart from its size, there is only one central tether point, which means it spends most of its time spinning like some miniature carousel. Should any duck ever make it inside, centrifugal force would hurl the unfortunate bird back into the water in no time!
This is a far cry from the island it replaced, which had natural vegetation, including bushes and trees, affording a protected space and an area in which to breed. The birds are now forced to spend the nights at the water’s edge and when we visited on March 27 we saw almost no birds at all. Either they have moved to more suitable environment or, more likely, have fallen victim to predatory foxes or cats now that they no longer have a safe refuge out in the water.
Overall, this is an ecological disaster and a waste of limited public money.
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