Scientists from IDEXX Laboratories in Wetherby got their hands dirty helping to care for a young woodland in Nidderdale.
The team of volunteers joined woodland experts from local charity Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust (YDMT) and the Nidderdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty for an afternoon of woodland management activities at Hartwith Bank Wood near Summerbridge.
The team set to work checking and straightening tree guards and stakes, and replacing any damaged ones, to help ensure that the developing trees are secure and well-supported. Old Spring Wood, a mature woodland nearby, also benefited from a spruce up courtesy of the volunteer team who cut back overgrown branches to make the footpaths more accessible.
Chris Lodge, Woodland Officer at YDMT, said: In the winter of 2007/08 we co-ordinated the planting of 2300 native broadleaf trees here.
The saplings got off to a good start, but after-care and ongoing maintenance is just as important to ensure that they grow to create a healthy woodland habitat.
I’d like to say a huge thank you to the team from IDEXX Laboratories for volunteering their time and energy to help us with vital maintenance work at this woodland.
IDEXX Laboratories volunteer Michelle Skinner said: I speak on behalf of all attendees when I say our volunteer day at Hartwith Bank was thoroughly enjoyed.
The YDMT and AONB are both knowledgeable and passionate about their activities and this transmitted across to our group.
It was great to be out in the beautiful countryside we have on our doorstep and be able to do our small bit in preserving and protecting it.
Overall it was a ‘feel good day’ and we look forward to planning future activities with the YDMT.
YDMT has helped to plant more than 1.1 million native broadleaf trees across the Yorkshire Dales and Nidderdale since 1996 through the Dales Woodland Restoration Programme which is delivered and funded by a partnership including YDMT, Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority and the Forestry Commission.
Paul Mosley, Nidderdale AONB Volunteer Co-ordinator, said: The group from IDEXX worked hard and really enjoyed the day, with amazing views over Nidderdale.
The work builds on the valuable conservation work carried out by the Nidderdale Conservation Volunteers at this and other sites across the AONB.