Selfish Gardeners Put Animals At Risk

The head ranger of Northam Burrows has condemned the fly-tipper who dumped garden waste.



At the Appledore end of the Burrows, located where the old recycling centre used to be, head ranger Shawn Corrin found a huge pile of grass cuttings almost certainly dumped by someone who had driven there with a trailer.

 When Shawn arrived, some horses were already helping themselves to the fresh cuttings. He said, “The problem is that when horses, sheep or cattle see such a feast laid out before them, they tend to gorge themselves. When this happens, it can create a build-up of gas in the stomach causing a condition known as bloat which if not treated will cause the animal’s death.”

 Fly tipping is illegal of course, especially on the Burrows which is a Site of Special Scientific Interest and falls under the Countryside and Wildlife Act. Grass cuttings like this can contain seeds which can then geminate, introducing a foreign body onto the Burrows. 

Shawn said, “It’s possible that the person who dumped the heap of grass cuttings thought it couldn’t harm the animals, but I can assure them it can. A pile like this can also interfere with the natural flora and fauna found on the Burrows so I would urge people to use their green wheelie bins for their garden waste, or take their grass cuttings to the nearest recycling centre.”

 Torridge’s Enviro-Crime officers will be stepping up patrols around the Burrows and won’t hesitate to stop people they see fly tipping. And they are actively investigating a similar fly tipping incident of grass cuttings in Scratchface Lane in Bideford.

 Head of Operational Services Ricky McCormack said, “Fly tipping is behaviour that is totally irresponsible, unnecessary, selfish, and potentially dangerous for our people, our animals, and our environment. As a council we are committed to protecting all of the above and we will prosecute those who thoughtlessly endanger any part of it."

 Anyone who has any information on any fly tipping incidents can call the Environmental Protection team on 01237 428810, or specifically about Northam Burrows please call the Burrows Centre on 01237 479708.