Last volunteering day of the year

11 December 2016

This morning eight people came to the spot of Chelo to participate in the last volunteering day of the year. The objective was to eradicate the small-leaf spiderwort (Tradescantia fluminensis) from the recreational area surroundings.

Photograph of the volunteersThe strength of this invasive exotic plant is its fragility. When uprooted, it easily breaks, which makes difficult its removal. Moreover, any small piece left can take root and recolonize the area. So, you have to be very methodical in its elimination and constant in the subsequent supervision of the area.

The volunteers filled a large sack with the foliage (approximately 1 m3). On top of that, they uprooted hydrangeas (Hydrangea sp.), since it is a species original from the Far East, and two sprouts of blackwood acacia (Acacia melanoxylon) which were already reaching a good size.

After having eliminated other four invasive species, next year we expect to be able to eradicate every exotic species on the banks of the River Mandeo, between the Chelo footbridge and the Teixeiro Bridge (obviously, except eucalyptus, since we would need the improbable permission of numerous owners).

This way we will be able to improve the habitat of a river section which, despite being very frequented by locals and visitors, holds endangered animals and plants on its riverbanks, such as the beetle Carabus galicianus, the narcissus Narcissus asturiensis, and in the water molluscs such as freshwater pearl mussel (Margaritifera margaritifera) or fish such as Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar).

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