Environment Agency officers’ long-term plan of attack involves working methodically down the rivers to clear the weed, and revisiting and double-checking previously cleared stretches. Image (c) Environment Agency. on 10 May 2019. For more information go to Nipping Floating Pennywort in the bud! Alan has developed and implemented a combined manual and chemical approach to tackle this species from its source in Sutton, and work until it is out of the river in Wandsworth. However, we do have discretion to remove it under our statutory powers. Although the EA website is grandiose, it is very lacking in defined information to allow one to drill down to a responsible person in any particular field or location. Click here for Pennywort Resources. We enlisted volunteers to map out where floating pennywort currently is in the river network.  And we now have the Lower Colne Floating Pennywort Management Plan – our plan of attack to fight the floating menace! The Thames Floating Pennywort Action Group is a team of Environment Agency staff from across our organisation that you have probably never heard of. Tiny white flowers are rare, but if present, they appear between July and August. We have a record of our experience in our blogs at https://camvalleyforum.uk/. The plant is notoriously difficult to control – it can grow up to 25cm a day in the right conditions and even a small fragment can re-grow into a new plant. If a quick internet search for Floating Pennywort tells you anything, it’s that this fast-growing non-native species is of increasing concern in the UK. posted on We formed a project steering group of local stakeholders, which includes Hillingdon council, the Canal & River Trust, and Colne Valley Fisheries Consultative. Introduced in the 1980s as an ornamental aquatic plant, Floating Pennywort’s pretty appearance belies its aggressively invasive nature. Environment Agency (EA) - The EA is under no obligation to remove Floating Pennywort, but they do have discretion to do so. That’s why we’re reminding people to help us stop the spread of this aquatic invader – make sure to check, clean and dry your clothes and equipment thoroughly after being in the water, and report sightings to us on 0800 80 70 60. Good quality close-up photos would help others to identify this plant elsewhere. Total eradication is probably impossible – but we still have plenty of unaffected watercourses and wetlands that we should fervently protect. posted on Floating pennywort (Hydrocotyle ranunculoides) arrived in the upper Cam in about 2012, completely covering it fo r months in 2016. It also increases the flood risk. Comment by In a river catchment to the west of London’s outskirts, Floating Pennywort has steadily expanded its range. Not all greenery is festive – that’s the reminder from the Environment Agency this Christmas, after teams have removed more than 1,000 tonnes of highly-invasive floating pennywort from river networks in the Anglian region. posted on Over the next few weeks the EA is also surveying the Rother (by canoe!) Reminder issued after EA removes 1,000 tonnes of the invasive species from the Anglian region’s rivers, The Environment Agency has been removing floating pennywort, an invasive species, from rivers. Comment by These habitat refuges were protected from Pennywort on the upstream side, using prototype booms installed by Cambridge Canoe Club. Become a Supporter. We use cookies to collect information about how you use GOV.UK. Top tips for preventing the spread of floating pennywort: Don’t include personal or financial information like your National Insurance number or credit card details. St Ives; Latest from Hunts Post. Sources of advice on identification and control of Floating Pennywort are available elsewhere. It can be used to identify Floating Pennywart. Removal efforts will continue into the spring, and the Environment Agency is appealing to anglers, boaters and others who spend time on or near the water to report any patches they see – and to take precautions to avoid spreading it. https://environmentagency.blog.gov.uk/2019/05/10/a-united-front-against-floating-pennywort-a-new-way-to-tackle-an-invasive-species-in-the-colne-valley/. entre for Ecology & … It’s part of a sustained attack on the non-native species this winter that sees the EA working with partners, contractors, local communities and volunteer groups to clear the plant – even by hand, when necessary. To help us improve GOV.UK, we’d like to know more about your visit today. ALAN CLARKE Don't give up - we did manage to get rid of floating pennywort from Exminster Marshes (part of Exe Estuary SSSI and SPA) after several years of hard work. Mike Foley RiverCare might be able to provide guidance as they sometimes work alongside the EA on Pennywort. In a river catchment to the west of London’s outskirts, Floating Pennywort has steadily expanded its range. Shiny, kidney-shaped leaves with crinkled edge, frequently broader than long . Floating pennywort, copyright GBNNS This highly invasive plant is a real problem for our waterways. There is no legal obligation for riverside landowners to remove Floating Pennywort (unless they are responsible for introducing it). Grantchester Mill September 2017, before clearance. We've had some more outbreaks this summer in the city, dispatched asap. Learn more about invasive species – and how you can help stop the spread – on the Non-native Species Secretariat’s website. Workshops are essential for fostering skills among local communities dealing with something like Floating Pennywort. As we continue to learn how best to reduce the range of Floating Pennywort in the Colne Valley, we will apply what we learn and make sure this is widely shared, both within the catchment community and with other communities elsewhere who could also benefit. But without catchment-wide ongoing management, the problem returned. The battle against Pennywort on the Cam above Cambridge is so close to being won, but a very small number of strands mysteriously still appear and we cannot be complacent. Floating pennywort forms dense mats that can affect oxygen levels in the water, crowd and kill off native wildlife, and damage habitat. By working together we can reduce this highly invasive plant’s impact and improve the … Unfortunately you can hardly go a few yards along the Cam downstream of Cambridge without encountering yet another large Pennywort mat. This aquatic invasive plant can be found along the river from Carshalton to Wandworth. But it’s a bit like dealing with litter; we can all play a part in disposing of it properly and tidying up, even where it’s not our fault. By submitting a comment you understand it may be published on this public website. Spreading itself across our waterways like a lush green carpet is one of nature’s enemies, growing up to 20cm a day and suffocating native plants and fish. The project had: I see there is a list of coordinators at a more regional level https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/map-of-water-management-catchments These people would help to point in the right direction. The spokesman added: “Rather than try to remove the plant it is important to report any sightings of floating pennywort to the Environment Agency via our free ‘Plant Tracker App’ or by calling our national customer contact centre on 03708 506506. As part of the annual maintenance programme, the Environment Agency has been managing floating pennywort for several years in locations such as the River Wey and the Foudry Brook. During 2010 the Environment Agency has employed a contractor to spray with herbicide any Floating Pennywort colonies found from the Rother all the way down the Don and South Yorkshire Navigation to Crimpsall (Doncaster prison) (twice). Dave Willis, Environment Manager for the Environment Agency, said: “The Environment Agency is excited to be working together with volunteers from a range of organisations who play a key role in the surveillance and management of floating pennywort. This was then followed up with removal of any remaining plants by hand. posted on Floating Pennywort is an invasive plant that is choking our rivers, streams and canals. The Environment Agency has been removing floating pennywort, an invasive species, from rivers Not all greenery is festive – that’s the reminder from the Environment Agency … We also manage flood risk and encourage sustainable development. on 02 September 2020. We use this information to make the website work as well as possible and improve government services. Mike Foley This blog gives an insight into our work. A new population can quickly become established from a single fragment drifting downstream, soon dominating the waterbody with a dense raft of vegetation. on 18 October 2020. You can change your cookie settings at any time. Don’t worry we won’t send you spam or share your email address with anyone. on 21 May 2019, You can find ID sheets for all invasive non-native species at the GB non-native species secretariat website We started off by contacting our local EA biodiversity specialist. Environment Agency - Tel: 08708 506 506 www.environment-agency.gov.uk Scottish Environment Protection Agency Tel : 01786 457 700 www.sepa.org.uk Floating pennywort of vegetation, with stem growth rates of up to Further information may also be found on the 20cm per day. As well as advancing the frontline, the teams also tidy up riverbanks so there’s less for the floating pennywort to cling to, which will help reduce its spread. Volunteers from local fishing, canoeing and boating groups are also chipping in by removing rafts of the weed with their hands, nets and bin bags. But the Environment Agency is continuing to battle the weed this winter. If we all do our parts, we can help protect our natural environment for people and wildlife into the future. We had previously suceessfully eradicated Floating Pennywort from the Upper Cam (see blog posts from 2017-19) so we were very concerned when we were notified on 11 March 2020 by the Environment Agency that they’d received a new report of Floating Pennywort on Shelford Stream; a small chalk stream watercourse that flows into Hobsons Conduit, then the Cambridge Botanic Garden and the … It will take only 2 minutes to fill in. Learning lessons in the Lower Colne catchment. The Lower Colne Catchment Floating Pennywort Management CVFC Plan is a two-year pilot project that aims to use a collaborative approach in … Floating Pennywort is notoriously difficult to control and despite many small-scale management efforts, removal has been unsuccessful as projects have not been undertaken on a large enough scale, or for a long enough duration. We knew that something different – something wider-reaching and sustainable – had to be attempted if we were to avoid repeating the cycle. Emailing us: enquiries_THM@environment-agency.gov.uk Not sure if it is floating pennywort? Good luck! ontact the Environment Agency (England and Wales) or SEPA (Scotland) for advice on disposal. “The Environment Agency is excited to be working together with volunteers from a range of organisations who play a key role in the surveillance and management of floating pennywort. A multi organisation group includes input from The Blackwater Valley Partnership, the Environment Agency, Thames Water, the Loddon Catchment Partnership, the Loddon Fisheries Consultative plus the owners of the various affected sites. This makes it difficult to punt or canoe up the river, out-competes native species and deoxygenates the water, killing fish. Comment by With Covid-19 restrictions in force, one punting company didn't open for business and a mat started up out of sight of the public. For our part, the Environment Agency will continue to provide technical support and advice on environmental best practice. AndyB All content is available under the Open Government Licence v3.0, except where otherwise stated, Invasive species week: Floating pennywort a spreading menace, Keep an eye out for floating pennywort this winter, Weeding out non-native invasive species in Cambridgeshire, Coronavirus (COVID-19): guidance and support, Transparency and freedom of information releases, Check yourself, your clothing, and any equipment that has been on or in the water, Thoroughly clean and remove any suspected specimens, leaving them at the site where they came from – preferably out of the water and on the banks, Report sightings to the Environment Agency’s 24/7 hotline: 0800 80 70 60, Dry your equipment thoroughly and well before re-launching it or using it again. One species we’ve had some great success with is floating pennywort. exchange Floating pennywort, or to release it into the environment. In this partnership, ColneCAN manage the project, using its strong local base to draw in support and engage with the public, landowners and other stakeholders. Hi Alan Tags. This aquatic invasive can grow up to 20 cm a day producing 70 kg of wet weight per square metre. We’ll send you a link to a feedback form. In 2012, the Environment Agency cleared 4km of the plant from the River Colne. Tony Jackson all the way up to Chesterfield to try to find the source of the infestation. Together, we agreed a 2-year project to test out a new approach – to co-ordinate people across the catchment to remove floating pennywort, wherever and whenever it rears its pretty head. Mike Williams Next month, June 2019, sees the project’s first work parties, where partners and volunteers will clear mats of Floating Pennywort from the river network. Description: Floating pennywort resembles a very large, robust version of the native Irish marsh pennywort (Hydrocotyle vulgaris L.). Paul Separovic, team leader at the Environment Agency said: Floating pennywort can cause damage to our natural habitat, threaten our native ecology, and prevent people from enjoying pastimes that bring them closer to nature, like fishing, boating and canoeing. In 2012, the Environment Agency cleared 4km of the plant from the River Colne. Find out more. The Environment Agency is under no obligation to remove floating pennywort. If you find floating pennywort on a watercourse please note the location and report it to your local Environment Agency Office. Contact the Environment Agency to speak to a specialist. Paul Separovic, team leader at the Environment Agency, said: “Floating pennywort can cause damage to our natural habitat, threaten our native ecology, and prevent people from enjoying pastimes that bring them closer to nature, like fishing, boating and canoeing. Sadly, 2017 and 2018 saw parts of the River Colne engulfed by rafts of Floating Pennywort. Look at the plant tracker website or download the app at www.planttracker.org.uk You can also report sightings using the plant tracker app. More than 500 tonnes were removed from the Bedford Ouse, 400 tonnes from the River Cam, and 200 tonnes from the Ely Ouse. posted on We find that in stretches with deep silt and poor bank access, canoes are indispensible for both taking out mats and for seek and destroy missions. on 11 February 2020. Staff from the Environment Agency cut reeds and removed the floating pennywort from the river itself using work boats. Since 2018, large mats only proliferate downstream of Bottisham Lock, beyond the stretch for which the Cam Conservators are responsible and Cam Valley Forum volunteers operate. Map of floating pennywort presence in the Middle to Lower Thames Environment Agency Operations Field Team removing floating pennywort from the River Thames … This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. A key challenge is that no one organisation or landowner bears responsibility for tackling non-native invasive species. The spokesman added: “Rather than try to remove the plant it is important to report any sightings of floating pennywort to the Environment Agency via our free ‘Plant Tracker App’ or by calling our national customer contact centre on 03708 506506. Comment by A spokesman for the Environment Agency said there was a historic problem of pennywort in the River Cam. v fenwick You’ve accepted all cookies. The project began in 2018 which saw the creation of the Colne Floating Pennywort Management Plan. Floating pennywort (Hydrocotyle ranunculoides) is native to North America. The project was awarded £4,385 from Cambridge Water’s PEBBLE grant and was also funded and supported by eight other organisations, including the Environment Agency. Similarly, the Environment Agency has no duty to remove it. Riparian owners are also not obliged to remove it, unless it can be shown that they planted it, though if it is on their land they do have a duty to take reasonable action to ensure it does not cause damage to neighbouring properties. For the Cam we have a local coordinator who is part of the EA's team achieving Water Framework Directive objectives through local projects. Hartford church organ appeal hits right note . Look out for pictures on social media. Identification throughout the year Varies little throughout theyear, although in the winter it is most likely to be found at the water’s edge. We find that if we don't deal with these outbreaks promptly break-off strands drifting downstream cause new growth. posted on Removing floating pennywort Many Hands Make Light Work It’s not just the Environment Agency that has been involved in trying to eradicate this problem. It is a creeping, stoloniferous, perennial aquatic plant, with floating or emergent leaves arising from nodes on its stem which also produce a profusion of fine roots. Comment by This discretion can be exercised via statutory powers under s165 of the Water Resources Act to carry out flood risk management works. It can become so prolific that boaters, anglers and others can’t use the waterway, and it even clogs sluices, weirs and drains, potentially increasing flood risk. Make sure you remove every last piece. http://www.nonnativespecies.org/index.cfm?sectionid=47, Comment by on 21 October 2020. On the Great Ouse, teams with weedboats are harvesting and removing the pennywort onto the banks, where it can compost down safely and naturally. Comment by Introduced widely across Europe as an ornamental pond species, pennywort has now become established in the wild with serious economic and ecological consequences. Floating pennywort was first naturalised in 1990 as a result of discarded plants from garden ponds and has now spread to hundreds of water bodies throughout England and Wales, although it was banned from sale in 2014. As a result, small fragments of the plant were not removed and the plant regrows. on 20 May 2019. Hi Tony posted on The teams have also tackled 50 new patches that appeared this year on the River Witham between Lincoln and Chapel Hill. We approached Groundwork South, the driving force behind the Colne Catchment partnership, ColneCAN. The £10,000 fund forms an integral part of the Lower Colne Floating Pennywort project, which is overseen by Groundwork South and the Environment Agency. Well enough, but how does one find a contact point for a real person in the EA to discuss the practicalities of pennywort removal by a voluntary group? Preventing the Spread of Floating Pennywort We’d like to thank our partner organisations, local communities, and especially the dedicated volunteers who go out of their way to help with removing the weed. The Environment Agency’s work helps to protect and improve the environment. Please read our privacy notice to see how the GOV.UK blogging platform handles your information. Floating pennywort, originally from America, is an invasive plant that arrived in the UK in the late 80s and has since caused havoc in the environment. It grows very rapidly in late summer, up to 20cm per day, and is responsible for swamping waterways, blocking water flow, crowding out native plants and taking oxygen from fish and insects. We only ask for your email address so we know you're a real person, Join our amazing field operations team in Yorkshire, Improving the water environment in the north-western Lake District and Cumbria, http://www.nonnativespecies.org/index.cfm?sectionid=47, https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/map-of-water-management-catchments. Floating Pennywort has been found present at four sites around Yateley and efforts are underway to prevent it becoming established in the River Blackwater. Paul Separovic, team leader at the Environment Agency said: Floating pennywort can cause damage to our natural habitat, threaten our native ecology, and prevent people from enjoying pastimes that bring them closer to nature, like fishing, boating and canoeing. 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