The community website for Ovingdean, East Sussex
Those of a certain age will recall the 1960’s Gerry Anderson marionette series ‘Captain Scarlet’ in which the presence of the Mysterons (evil space aliens) was accompanied by spooky circles of light. Of late, similar circles have been appearing on the Beacon Hill nature reserve. Nothing to do with the Mysterons, but marking the evil deeds of mysterious dog owners ( or at least their dogs) who persistently leave little aliens dotted around the reserve. Some might argue that this does no harm and provides a natural fertiliser to the reserve, ignorant to the fact that the flora typical of chalk downland thrives on a paucity of nutrients and that dog poo, apart from being nasty to tread in, is actually detrimental to the health of Beacon Hill. The following statement was issued by our own ‘Captain Scarlett’, Ranger Charlie Yates…
There have been many complaints by patrons of Beacon Hill that the dog mess has become a serious problem. This hasn’t gone unnoticed by me, but up to now I have been at a loss as to how to address the continuing problem. Now that the sheep have grazed a large section of the reserve I intend to circle all dog mess with a fluorescent biodegradable spray. This will draw attention to the problem and hopefully push those that do not pick up their dog waste, to do so. I appreciate that this process may have an unsightly appearance, but I can assure you that it will only be short lived. I have spoken to several dog walkers and pedestrians all of whom agreed that this sounded like a great idea. I believe it has worked elsewhere in the country and I hope that it also has the desired effect on Beacon Hill.
I shall also be issuing spot fines to anyone caught allowing their dog to foul the reserve or leaving dog waste bags on the ground. Beacon Hill is a nature reserve and not a public toilet for dogs. Please could all dog waste be picked up and disposed of in the bins at either end of the reserve or at home.
Park Ranger for Beacon Hill