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Letter: Why can't we have a 'no mo May'?




SIR – Just as the flowers are in bloom and insects and other invertebrates have emerged from their winter lockdown, along come the mowers and once again destroy all the spring wildlife on our roadside verges.

If you look closely at dandelion flowers this time of year, each one often contains a small number of beetles. These, in turn, feed birds and other wildlife. Mowing spring flowers on our verges macerates millions of these small creatures and denies our struggling pollinators food, including bees, and they starve – a generation lost.

Seems like the “No Mow May” message, adopted by some of the more enlightened and considerate public bodies, has once again been ignored.

Dandelions are a great haven for insects
Dandelions are a great haven for insects

It could also affect some people’s mental health and wellbeing, having no flowers around them and a lack of wildlife to enjoy. There is no need for this wholly inappropriate management regime.

If we are ever going to halt this massive decline in our native local community wildlife, from invertebrates up the foodchain to our top predators (the New Milton water tower peregrines, for example), all of us, particularly public bodies, need to move away from the “close-cropped, neat-and-tidy-is-good” mindset.

Public bodies have a duty to further nature conservation when carrying out their duties, not destroy it. But it seems that currently they are still part of, and contributing to, our declining wildlife populations problem, not the solution.

Two cuts a year is all that is required; one in March, the other at the end of September, cuttings removed each time.

Bob Lord,
Barton



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