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Frost

Monday, January 14th 2013

Frost covered the vegetation this morning and turned the heath from brown to white. 

Frost on the heath

The Juniper trees were also white and if you look closely at the photograph you can see some strands of a spider's silken web coated in frost.  Are these the remains of webs from late autumn or is there a spider hidden deep in the prickly leaves?

Spider's web in Juniper

Frost and low temperatures can cause problems for the bird ringers as they put up the mist nets. The aluminium poles can become very brittle and break easily.

Outting up the nets

When the data from retrapped birds are entered into IPMR (the data handling programme) their first capture details are shown.  From this information we can work out the age of the bird.  Today we recorded a Blackbird that was six years old, a Long Tailed Tit that was at least 5 years old and a Coal Tit and Blue Tit both 6 years old. 

In recent weeks there have been large numbers of Coal Tits caught.  These birds have come in from the surrounding conifer blocks to feed.

Several Lesser Redpolls, some with bright red heads, were processed.  A Chaffinch whose wing length and weight were greater than usual, raised the question 'Was it a migrant from Europe?'

Great Spotted Woodpeckers can be very loud when being handled. It is unusual for three to be in the ringing room at the same time and for them to be so quiet!

3 Great Spotted Woodpeckers in the ringing room

Visitors to the ringing room were briefed about ringing and the information we can gain from ringed birds.  Children were encouraged to look closely at the birds and to try to identify them.  There were many interested visitors today.

A ringing day is not complete without many cups of tea, a variety of food, bag counting and tidying up - many thanks to everyone who contributed throughout the day.


(1) Comments:

Tony Crease responded on 14th Jan 2013 with...

Thank you to Elizabeth for scribing, to those who brought in butties, cakes and other stickies, to volunteers who cleaned out and counted the bags, to E again for writing the blog so often and for making fantastic quitled covers for the new magnifying glasses, and to Eleanor and Johanna’s Mum for helping to put out the nets - not forgetting those who helped with the visitors and the cleaning up.  Quite a team effort very much appreciated.


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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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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.



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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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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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