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Keeping wildlife wild at the Pavilion Gardens

Plans to help strike a balance between visitors and the waterfowl at Buxton's Pavilion Gardens have been announced by High Peak Borough Council.

The move follows comments the Council has received from visitors to the park about the birds, and in particular the impact of the Canada Geese on the grounds, and two opinion surveys that were carried out last summer.

To help ensure the Gardens remains a place that visitors and wildlife can enjoy, the Council is planning several measures to help manage the space to the benefit of everyone.

Plans include:

  • Signage advising people not to feed the birds
  • Planting along the edges of the lakes; fencing off a section of grass close to where the birds feed; and creating a picnic area with limited access for grazing birds
  • Installing bird identification panels and making free bird count sheets available

Councillor Damien Greenhalgh, Deputy Leader and Executive Councillor for Regeneration, Tourism and Leisure, said: "The surveys, together with the comments we've received from visitors, revealed a wide range of views and suggestions on managing the waterfowl in the Gardens.

"Our aim is to strike a balance between the people who enjoy spending time in the park and the wildlife that call it home so we're introducing several measures which we think will help achieve that.

"The first thing we're doing is asking people please to not feed the birds - to keep our wildlife wild. Signs have gone up around the Gardens advising people of this and I would ask everyone to respect that so we can all enjoy this public green space at the heart of Buxton."

The planting measures will be taking place over the coming months.

Executive Councillor for Climate Change and Environment, Jean Todd, said: "We do want people to be able to engage with the birds in ways other than feeding them as this can be harmful to the balance of nature.

"The information panels about the water birds will help people to identify what they can see in the Gardens and free bird count sheets will be also available from the Pavilion Gardens complex to encourage people to record what they spot.

"The planting schemes will also help define and harmonise spaces for visitors to spend their leisure time whilst retaining space for the birds."

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