We have teamed up with local landowner Caroline Knox to open Birchmore Pond in Blackwater. Opening this ponds to more light and warmth has created the perfect environment in particular for dragonflies and damselflies. We have been lucky to be advised by local expert Dave Dana who has found some excellent results, including Azure Damselflies and the dramatic-looking Migrant Hawker.
Work continues at Birchmore Pond to maintain and enhance it for wildlife. The conservation group Isle of Wight Green Gym have work incredibly hard to hugely improve an area for wildlife and enable easier access for people to view the pond and its inhabitants.
Come prepared with your own nets and jam jars, and whilst enjoying this why not extend your visit and pop in for a cuppa at next-door Naturezones . Here you can do more pond-dipping or follow their nature trail.
How to get there
On foot/By bike – The site which is accessed from the popular National Cycle Route 23 on the Shide to Merstone section. There are no cycle racks but the site is very small, or you can attach your bike to the cycle track signs outside.
By bus – Blackwater Hollow Bus Stops (Route3) + 5 min walk. (Bus Timetables)
By Car – There is an uneven road off Blackwater Hollow (follow the signs to Naturezones) the approx. postcode for your sat nav is PO30 3BP. Or park in Blackwater Hollow and walk.
what3words for site ///inclines.proposals.curious
There are no formal paths on the site. The land surrounding the pond is rough grass and is uneven in places. The site is free from gates and stiles.
There are no toilets anywhere near this site. The nearest toilets are in the town of Newport.
We will be updating our Site Access Statements during 2022. Please watch this space.
What to look out for
Damselflies and dragonflies, particularly in early summer.
Managing the site
We manage this site primarily for its pond life. Every few years we need to remove some of the water plants to maintain an open area of water. We do this in the autumn / winter months and never remove all the plants at once. We also manage the scrub in winter so that we can maintain access and views.
There are various ways you can help improve and maintain our sites. We rely on volunteers to help with many tasks on our sites and also need people who are happy to regular visit the site be our “eyes and ears”, this means we can respond much quicker to issues. Our shop raises money to support our work and needs a team of volunteers. Or maybe you would like to help us with events. Find out more here.
You can also help by becoming one of our regular supporters. Even giving a few pounds each month can make a real difference, with your donation being invested into site management and improvement work to benefit site visitors and look after our precious wildlife. Sign up here.