“Such a hostile environment…”

David tells a story about his local river, the Patchway Brook, which is dynamic and changeable in terms of its power and depth and therefore hostile to wildlife. The speed at which the river rises and falls leaves David to speculate on the ability of the local fields to absorb flood water.

David Baker: At the lower end, at a deeper part, as it begins to approach the lake you will find bullheads, and you will find stone loach, even some small stickleback, apart from that is it mainly just small invertebrates. Very little in the way of aquatic plant life, because it is such a hostile environment as the water goes up and down. When it is up it goes very, very fast, I wouldn’t like to fall in it when it’s at full speed, but the nature of it is if you fell in it at full speed, by the time you got to the bottom it would be ankle deep. It goes up and down so quickly, the fields must hold a huge amount of water that drains off into it.

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