Sunday, 22 August 2010

Kennet spawning grounds at risk

The attraction of our waterways to bicycles and shopping trolleys has long been recognised, but the continuing low levels along the riverine and non-canalised sections of the lower Kennet has now revealed a new group of water users.  Pub chairs. 

This latest addition to the list of groups seeking greater access to English and Welsh rivers has thus far only been confirmed at one location, but suspicions remain that this anti-social element has been indulging in nefarious waterside activities, with evidence cited in the shape of the growing number of beer can spraints that can be found alongside the Kennet.

A spokesperson for the trolleys has stated that SAFFA (the Supermarket Assisted Four-wheel Furniture Act) legislation may be used to stop pub chairs from damaging environmentally sensitive spawning grounds.

Shopping trolleys spawn undisturbed in the shallow water gravel bed of a River Kennet side stream in July 2009.

Navigation of the River Kennet by a pub chair prevents a trolley from emerging from its gravel nest site in August 2010.

Pub chairs have been associated with beer can droppings along the banks of the River Kennet.

After dumping, young supermarket trolleys make their way downstream on their side where they are at risk from fringe extremist wing backs who may show a blatant disregard for the trolleys' inability to get out of the way.

Related to more cumbersome four-wheeled species, bicycles also find it difficult to manouever on their sides in water, and are prone to damage from passing motorised La-Z-Boys or speeding armchairs.