Skip to main content

Habitat Sites

Volume 163: debated on Monday 4 December 1989

The text on this page has been created from Hansard archive content, it may contain typographical errors.

To ask the Minister of Agriculture:, Fisheries and Food what progress is being made with incentives to farmers and woodland managers to maintain and enhance important habitat sites of wildlife value.

My Department has introduced a number of grant schemes that provide incentives for the protection of existing, or creation of new, wildlife habitats.The introduction of the environmentally sensitive area schemes in 1987 was designed to conserve and enhance landscape and wildlife interests in areas vulnerable to changes in farming practices. The farm woodland scheme, introduced last year, has as one of its objectives the enhancement of the landscape and the creation of new wildlife habitats. The farm and conservation grant scheme (introduced in February this year) places particular emphasis on conservation and the needs of the environment. As far as woodlands are concerned, it is a requirement of the Forestry Commission's woodland grant scheme that proper account should be taken of the needs of nature conservation. In this connection, the commission will shortly be publishing comprehensive guidelines on the nature conservation aspects of woodland management.

To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what steps were taken when the: drainage system at Shirley Pool/Rushy Moor site of special scientific interest near Doncaster was installed to avoid damage to the site and habitat; and if he will make: a statement.

Proposals were submitted to my Department by the Dun drainage commissioners in 1981 to improve the land drainage within the catchments of the Thistle Goit and Haywood pumping stations. These included works to deepen the drains running through the Shirley Pool/Rushy Moor SSSI. In order to retain the marshland and wet woodland habitats within the site, the proposals were revised by agreement with the Nature Conservancy Council and my Department, to divert the main flow to deepened channels outside the SSSI. Drainage work within the Shirley Pool SSSI was thereby avoided.