Drought Watch: there is no drought – official

Following the ‘Drought Summit’ today in Whitehall, the Environment Secretary Caroline Spelman has said we aren’t yet in drought.

You can read more about it here http://www.defra.gov.uk/environment/quality/water/drought/

Amongst others, Natural England will be ‘working with conservation groups to try to reduce the impact [of the dry weather] on wildlife’, so hopefully they’ll be in contact with Pond Conservation soon so we can make offer our advice on what needs to be done. With somewhere between 50,000 and 80,000 Priority Ponds across the UK there’s quite a lot of ponds to worry about.

And with more endangered species making use of ponds than either rivers or lakes, we need to be thinking both about big and small freshwaters. The absence of the sort of routine, day-in, day-out, monitoring we take for granted on the river network makes it especially difficult to judge the impact on our smaller waters.

Of course it’s not all doom and gloom – plenty of freshwater plants and animals are adapted to periods of drought. But as well as winners, there will probably be losers too. At this stage it’s hard to predict which will be which.

We’ll be interested to hear from anyone with either good or bad news stories about the effects of the (not quite yet) drought.


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