How can I help?
We’re so lucky to have this heathland paradise on our doorstep, it’s definitely something worth protecting. Even for people not interested in wildlife, if you value wild spaces, spare a thought for the rare ground-nesting birds. Without them, these places wouldn’t have such robust protection from development. By working together we can all enjoy this fragile landscape into the future.
Birds are nesting from March to mid-September. You can avoid disturbing them and give chicks the best chance of survival by:
- Sticking to main paths. Keeping to main paths reduces the risk of disturbing the rare birds that nest on the ground. If walking a dog, throwing a stick or ball down the track rather than into the heather is a great way to help.
- Keeping dogs under your control. Keeping dogs on main paths, close to you and in sight, or on a lead, from March to mid-September avoids disturbance, and helps avoid adder and tick bites.
- Always bagging & binning. As well as being unpleasant and spreading disease, dog waste fertilises the ground, killing the heathland plants that make the Thames Basin Heaths special. Please always bag it & bin it, any bin will do. And if there’s no bin, or the bin is already full, please take it home.
- Using ‘Greenspace on your doorstep’. Our directory lists over 60 dog-friendly, safe and sociable circular walks that have been set aside for you to explore and enjoy, where dogs can roam off-lead without disturbing sensitive wildlife. All entries have at least 2 hours free parking, nearly all have poo bins and many have surfaced paths. If you haven’t done so already, they’re well worth seeking out.
- Reducing the risk of fire. Please never discard cigarettes, bring BBQ’s or light camp fires.
- Helping to spread the word. By joining a community group such as Heathland Hounds.
- Becoming an ambassador for fire prevention. By joining the K9 Fire Patrol with Surrey Fire & Rescue Service.
- Getting involved as a conservation volunteer. Checkout our page of volunteering opportunities.