Dormice on Cwm Clettwr

After a possible sighting of a dormouse at Cwm Clettwr a few months ago we went looking for nibbled hazelnuts this month. We were delighted when, down by the river, we discovered a few hazelnuts that had definitely been nibbled by dormice leaving their distinctive chew marks. A definite positive result- there are dormice in Cwm Clettwr.

Hazel dormouse by Ian Pratt

Hazel dormouse by Ian Pratt

Dormice particularly benefit from coppiced broadleaf woodland (Cwm Clettwr was coppiced historically for the tanning industry). Dormice also benefit from a wide mix of woodland plants such as honeysuckle and blackberry.

At the top of the reserve (well away from the dormouse signs and not in good habitat for them) there are two rocky outcrops that are covered with heather. There is lots of birch growing up through the heather and brambles taking over so biannually we clear it leaving the odd oak and the heather. With 8 of us clearing we got lots done and finished the day with large habitat piles.