Vandals spotted damaging a tree at Fenland nature reserve

Vandals were seen using a hammer to severely damage a tree at a Fenland nature reserve.

A nest box was also destroyed and it is thought the tree is so badly damaged that it may topple over in strong winds.

Visitors to the Ring’s End Nature Reserve near March are now being urged to report such behaviour to police.

Emma Nolan posted on the Friends of Ring’s End Nature Reserve Facebook page after her parents spotted a group of youths defacing the tree on Saturday (October 3).

She said: “Today while walking at the reserve my parents caught a group of young teenage boys using a claw hammer to severely damage a tree.

“One of the few remaining nest boxes nearby was also destroyed.”

“They were shouted at and told to leave, which they did, at speed on their bikes. The hammer was thrown into the undergrowth as they ran for their bikes.”

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She added: “The tree looks like it is now potentially going to fall in a strong wind (the damage is worse than it looks in the picture).

“My parents regularly come across youngsters (having arrived in cars, on foot or on bikes, most often when the weather is wet like today), or at dusk.”

March town councillor Robert White said there had also been a fly tipping incident at nearby Graysmoor Pits at the weekend.

He said: “Both incidents have been dealt with and I have personally raised the incident with Cambridgeshire police.

“The youths responsible should be aware that we have MULTIPLE trail cameras placed at random times and locations on all our reserves and we will be reporting all such incidents directly to the Police who no doubt will prosecute with impunity.

“Perhaps if the youths feel the need to vandalise the reserve to the extent that they actually take tools down and go to such lengths then their efforts would be better placed in taking their litter home and helping us with said tools to manage the reserve.

He added: “All we can do as a community is work together educate and without emotion repair the damage and carry on. Remember it’s your reserve let’s help conserve nature together not tarnish it.”

Vandalism has previously been an issue at the Ring’s End reserve.

In 2018, a forest school was targeted with willow fences broken and low-level bird feeders moved higher up in trees where nobody could get to them.

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