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A swarm at Foxglove

Thursday, June 11th 2009

What a day at Foxglove today! We started the day with the moth trap. After we had over 70 last week there were high hopes for today, but alas, there were only 6 moths in the trap. These did include another Ruddy Highflyer and a beautiful Eyed Hawkmoth (which unfortunately flew away before we got a good picture!). Pictured here is an Angle Shades moth.

Angle Shades moth

Then 3 children from Colburn School came with their teacher to have a look around with a view to doing some conservation work here. They will be coming once a week till the end of term.

Whilst on a habitat walk with them along Risedale Beck Andrew spotted something up in a tree. As you can see, it was a swarm of bees.

After ringing Richmond Beekeepers we found out that it was one of Sandra's hives which had swarmed. This afternoon was spent re-capturing the bees by making them fall into a temporary basket called a skep. We then had to wait to see if the queen had been caught.

Bee hive

As you can see in the second picture the worker bees were congregating around the opening and fanning with their wings. This told the main swarm that the queen was in the basket and so called the rest of them in.

We closed off the paths and left the bees there for an hour or so to see if they would settle. On going back at 4 o'clock there were still some bees not in the skep. Sandra has left them there to be checked on later tonight when all the bees should be in the basket; they will then be gathered up and carried to a new hive.

Bee hive

This has been an exciting day for us at Foxglove as we don't usually see a hive swarm. Everyone who was there felt that they had learned a lot more about the bees and their behaviour thanks to Sandra.

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The Friends of Foxglove Covert is for those individuals, families and organisations who would like to support the reserve through an annual membership subscription. Friends receive a regular newsletter and invitations to attend our various activities and social events.

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Upcoming Events

Meadow Mayhem

Saturday 4th July 2020 | 10.00am - 12 noon

Celebrate National Meadows Day!

Join us for a morning exploring the many wildflower meadows found at Foxglove. We will be learning how to ID wildflowers and grasses, as well as sweep netting for butterflies and insects and identifying them. This event is part of the Flowers of the Dales Festival

A minimum donation of £5 per person in advance to guarantee a place. Card payments can be taken by phone.

This event is free for Volunteers and Friends of the reserve.

Damsels and Dragons

Sunday 19th July 2020 | 1.00pm start

Have you ever wondered what the difference is between a Dragonfly and a Damselfly? Can you tell the difference between the different species of blue damselfly? Would you like to learn more about theses fascinating animals that have been around since prehistoric times? Join Keith Gittens for a walk around the beautiful Foxglove ponds (some of which are usually out of bounds to visitors) and observe as many different species as you can. Last year, a new species for the reserve was discovered on this event!

Booking is essential as places are limited. There is a donation of £5 per person to be paid in advance in order to secure a place. Payments now can be made on the phone.

This event is free for Volunteers and Friends of the reserve.


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The Dragonflies of Strensall and Foxglove Covert

This book has been published with the aim of enabling people visiting these, immensely important Flagship Pond Sites in North Yorkshire, to identify the dragonflies and damselflies they encounter - by reference to a simple text and photographs. Credits - Yorkshire Dragonfly Group & Freshwater Habitats Trust

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