18. Latimer Park Water Vole Habitat Creation Scheme

Aims: Improve wildlife corridors; Work together

Water body: River Chess
Project description

Partnership project to restore habitat for water voles and help them to recolonise the upper river. The work is being carried out in support of the R. Chess Water Vole Recovery Scheme.

 Biennial water vole surveys of the R. Chess have revealed a significant section of river with poor habitat for water voles, which is preventing the population from re-colonising the headwaters of the Chess.  The project is being carried out by a partnership including the Chilterns Chalk Streams Project, River Chess Association and Chiltern Rangers, working with the landowner and volunteers to create a series of clearings within a wooden section of the river.  These clearings are being created by traditional coppicing and the removal of invasive non-native species (Laurel and ornamental dogwood), which have extensively shaded the river. Once the clearings have been created, a second phase of work will involve installation of woody habitat features, such as deflectors and berms to promote the development of vegetated marginal habitat, which is ideal for water voles and other species such as brown trout.  The work is expected to take 3 years.

Project lead: Chilterns Chalk Streams Project
Project partners: River Chess Association, Chiltern Rangers, Restore Hope Latimer
Contact for more information: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Project start: February 2018
Project end: 2021

Design by LTD Design Consultants and build by Garganey Consulting. From an original concept by the Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust.