Skip to main content

Olympic Games 2012: Wildlife

Volume 472: debated on Monday 25 February 2008

To ask the Minister for the Olympics what recent progress has been made on the relocation of (a) wildlife and (b) feral cats from the Olympic site at Stratford; and if she will make a statement. (187076)

In parallel with ongoing site clearance and preparation works, the Olympic Delivery Authority continues its comprehensive ecology programme to ensure the preservation and protection of wildlife in the Olympic Park. Where possible, habitats are being safeguarded and will remain in place but, where wildlife cannot be protected sufficiently on-site, the ODA is working with the nearby Waterworks Nature Reserve and Hackney council to create alternative habitats in the local area. The ODA is also preparing a small nature reserve at East Marsh to become home to a variety of wildlife including birds, frogs, spiders and beetles with planting scheduled to commence in the spring.

To date, thousands of newts and hundreds of toads have been translocated to specially created ponds on the Waterworks Reserve and aquatics experts have moved fish away from the clearance and dredging works on the Pudding Mill river to the nearby river Lea. New nest areas suitable for the breeding and feeding patterns of kingfishers and sand martins have also been created at the Waterworks.

The ODA is also working with the Celia Hammond Animal Trust (CHAT) to ensure the well-being and safe capture of any feral cats remaining on the site. To date, around 170 cats have been safely taken off site for re-homing by the trust. The ODA continues to work closely with the trust to allow access to those areas safe from construction activities.