In late April, visitors to the Country Park may have been mystified by the sight of volunteers and Park Ranger Chris making, and then deploying on the lake, strings of straw “sausages”. We make these by putting the straw into tubular netting.
Our lake doesn’t have a constant flow of fresh water, and we have a lot of ducks and other water birds that poo into the water. Consequently, the water becomes enriched with strong fertiliser and algae likely to grow in warm weather.
The algae cause oxygen depletion and can also be poisonous to fish, birds, and higher aquatic plants. The barley straw releases natural chemicals that slow the growth of, but don’t kill, the algae.