On Saturday the 3rd Febuary, 2007 a number of Directors and members built three bird islands. It had always been our intention to create a number of nesting / breeding areas in the Machine Pond. Following an Ecological survey/report of Parc Nant y Waun, one of the main recommendations was improved nesting sites on the pond. The report also suggested that this was one activity the members could carry out themselves. With help and guidance provided by a voluntary organisation BTCV. The Islands were finally launched on the 26th Feb 2007. The task took longer than was four hours anticipated. After the islands were afloat it was obvious that a larger nesting area was required. The extension to the islands would have to wait until the following year as the breeding season was about to begin. It's against the law to disturb the habitat of nesting and breeding birds.
First stage of the construction. - The outer frame was screwed together before inner panels were added to maximise its strength.
Second Stage - When the frames were completed, they were covered in fine gauge wire netting on to which rolls of special material sown with native plants were laid.
Third Stage - The newly constructed bird island was tested and two more made and the three bolted together.and covered in the seed rolls The group were then towed to the middle of the pond and anchored there.
In early 2008 a bid was lodged with BAGS for money to buy materials to build three more Planted Nesting Islands plus a Tern Island (gravel covered) and was successful, and construction was commenced in March.
After several postponements because of bad weather, the new Bird Islands were completed, and launched. In spite if very blustery conditions, they were taken down to the pond, the anchors were put in place, and the Islands were towed out to the middle of the pond. It was hoped that vegetation would grow over them in the Summer, and that waterfowl would start to use them.
The first organised litter pick in the Parc was held in September 2005,
Members of The Friends of Parc Nant-y-Waun and their families at the Litter Pick which was supported by BTCV, there were plenty of youngsters willing to help
The second litter pick was held in March 2007, as part of the Heads of the Valleys Campaign and in conjunction with Keep Wales Tidy. Volunteers met at the new car park at the southern end of the Machine Pond, and a marquee was erected on the grassland below Warwick Road, to provide a B-B-Q and refreshments.
The next litter pick was held in April 2008, two main areas were tackled, The area around the Picnic areas, and the big marshy dip at the Beaufort end of the Parc. At that area alone 18 bags were filled with rubbish, and other items, too big for the bags were dragged out. The most recent event was held in May 2009.
The Directors successfully gained a grant from Cyd Coed to improve the environment at Parc Nant y Waun. Phase one of the tree planting was completed in the spring of 2006, the final stage was completed during January and Febuary of 2007. A local contractor, Afan Landscaping, carried out this work.
MARCH 2008 - MEMORIAL TREES PLANTED.
41 Memorial trees were sponsored by local people and planted out around the Outdoor Classroom area.They were a variety of native species, and are all between 6 and 8 ft tall. All sponsors were invited to place their own message of dedication in a book to be kept at the Brynmawr Museum.
In October 2008, a small group of members met up for a tree planting session, some 185 small trees, mostly Horse Chestnut, were planted in the area between Machine Pond and Mustard Pond.
OAK TREE PLANTING - In January 2009, a group of Friends got together and planted an avenue of 50 small oak trees. We were so lucky with the weather, after a terrible night of heavy rain and high winds, the morning was bright, and although cold, and soggy underfoot, remained fine all morning.
A few of us walked the Parc after a well deserved 'cuppa', and even managed to recover an Asda trolley which had been thrown down the bank of the Mustard Pond. In the afternoon the weather turned really violent again, so we really were blessed - 4 photos below.
AUGUST 2009 - GREEN EARTH ERECT A FENCE AT THE HORSETAIL POND.
A fence was erected along the Eastern edge of the Horsetail Pond. One reason for having a fence there was to protect the pond and all the excellent work that was done to it earlier in the year.
We also needed to protect the children who, quite naturally find water irresistable. Although we wanted to encourage them to come pond dipping, we did not want any nasty accidents. There would of course be a gate to enable access to the pond dipping area. The rest of the banks were strictly out of bounds to protect the plants and animals on the banks of the pond.