Sett for success

BADGERS are benefiting from the Baldock bypass. Tunnels act as a crossing for wildlife, according to a recent survey by the Herts and Middlesex Badger Group. Three special tunnels allow badgers to get from one side of the bypass to the other when they ne

BADGERS are benefiting from the Baldock bypass.

Tunnels act as a crossing for wildlife, according to a recent survey by the Herts and Middlesex Badger Group.

Three special tunnels allow badgers to get from one side of the bypass to the other when they need to. Other measures to protect local wildlife include fencing to prevent deer and badgers straying onto the carriageway.

During the construction of the £43 million road, which opened in 2006, a significant investment was put into improving the road scheme including sowing native wild flowers and grasses along the entire 6.5km length of the bypass.


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It is hoped that this will benefit the local populations of animals such as bats and lizards.

There are signs that badgers are using one of the tunnels on a regular basis. Also, while one of the local setts is showing signs of less activity, another has expanded.

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The Herts and Middlesex Badger Group have also reported that the fencing alongside the road is intact with no sign that badgers have tried to burrow underneath.

Stuart Pile, county council executive member for transport, the environment and rural affairs, said: "Any major road construction project inevitably affects the wider environment in significant ways, but the example of the Baldock bypass clearly demonstrates that building a new road does not necessarily mean that you have to compromise local wildlife habitat in the process.

"It is most gratifying, in particular, that since the bypass has opened, no badger casualties have been reported on the bypass thanks to the fencing and tunnels."

The Hertfordshire Biological Records Centre (HBRC) continues to work closely with Hertfordshire Highways to provide advice about the wildlife and future monitoring of the wild flowers and grasses sown along the bypass.

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