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Another Early Morning

Sunday, May 15th 2016

Well wrapped up bird ringers arrived at Foxglove at 5am.  A different walk, over the moor saw a delightful sky.  There is a hint of blue in the sky and on the ground on the Bluebell bank.  Bluebells are indicators of ancient woodland.  I wonder what the moor looked like when covered in trees?

Sky over the moor

Great Spotted Woddpeckers were drumming.  The first Cuckoo of spring was heard.  A Roe Deer was barking.  It then jumped the gate to the middle moor before elegantly stretching its legs to fly over the boundary fence and disappear onto the training area.

CES 2 is always quiet as many of the birds now have territories and are not moving around.  Females are sitting on nests and the males are guarding them.  The resulting data shows more retraps and more males on this day.  In total 161birds were processed including the first juvenile Song Thrushes.  Other birds included Siskin, Robin, Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff, Blackcap and our first Sedge Warbler of the year..  Interestingly the Lesser Redpolls have moved on and not a single one was caught. This was the fourth highest total for CES 2 in 24 years.

Ringing room

Some of the bird ringers were out checking nest boxes and the cold weather has obviously had an affect;  some nests were not finished yet and the females were not sitting on their completed clutches of eggs.

This is the entrance to a Nuthatch's nest.  The hole is made smaller by lining it with mud.

Nuthatch nest

The large nest boxes have all now had one visit and plans are ready for their next.  Today was the start of the small boxes and emails and phone calls will happen over the next few days to organise visits to various woods.  A really busy time for the ringers.  Thank you for all your hard work.

Already some of the spring flowers are setting seed as this Dandelion shows.

Dandlion flower and seed heads

Cotton Grass is beginning to flower in the Scrapes but does not look as appealing as it will later on once the seeds set and the white fluffy cotton heads dance in the gentle breeze.

Cotton Grass Flower

Judging by the temperature over the weekend 'our clouts' must remain to hand as May is only half way through and the May blossom still has some developing to do.

May blossom buds


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Friends of Foxglove

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
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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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