Sussex wildlife suffers from the drought

It is feared that wildlife in Sussex could be severely damaged by the drought that is occurring in the region.

A crisis meeting has recently been held with Caroline Spelman, the Environment Secretary.

The meeting involved numerous wildlife groups, local businesses and users of the river and it has highlighted how the amount of rainfall in the winter has been at its lowest rate since the early 1970s.

In the south-east of England there are some of the most important wetland sites for bird species and it is thought that if a large amount of rain doesn’t occur in the next few weeks then many of the species which utilise these wet lands could come under threat.

The warden for the RSPB Pulborough Brooks is Paul Spires and he has commented, “The amounts of run-off water and spring lines we have has decreased significantly and the situation is starting to become worrying. We are taking significant efforts to make sure that we have large amounts of reserve water but if it does not rain than the amount we have is going to be a long way from ideal.”

As the fields are drying out, the invertebrates which birds feed on are becoming harder to find. This can mean that the young of the birds are unable to survive. Unfortunately, the news from the Met office is not good and they are predicting that there is a less than 15 percent chance of the next three months being unusually wet. It is very likely that because of this prediction water restrictions are going to come into effect in the UK shortly.

The RSPB’s head of water policy is Rob Cunningham and he has stated, “We are currently assessing what the situation would be if the drought continues. We want to make sure every effort is taken so that we have enough water to ensure the survival of the birds. Efficient use of this water is going to be key”.

The government have taken several actions to help alleviate the drought situation. Mr Cunningham continued, “We are pleased with the government’s response to the drought”