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Interesting Information

Sunday, June 30th 2019

The first call this morning was not for a bird but a flower.  Eleanor had spotted a Bee Orchid.  To say that we were surprised is putting it mildly.  This is the first ever Bee Orchid found on the reserve.  How it has arrived where it has arrived will lead to much discussion.

After this excitement we returned to main event of the day, CES 6.  It has been said before that bird ringing is not a numbers game, but the numbers caught do give indications of the populations of the species within the reserve.  For several outings very few Bullfinches were seen, never mind caught but today 30 were newly ringed, which brings the total for the last few months to 121.  I think from this we can assume they have had a good breeding season and are doing well.

Tawny Owls are usually ringed in the nest boxes, but there are always exceptions to the rule and over CES 5 and 6 we have processed three.  Another call over the radio was to inform us that a female Sparrowhawk was in the net and would arrive shortly in the ringing room.  Females are much bigger than males and tend to bounce out of the net.  She is the only female caught in six years. 

A juvenile Linnet received its ring and again it is the first for six years.

Redpolls can be seen in large numbers during the late winter but they then disperse for the breeding season.  It was a surprise to see our first juvenile.

Careful planning between net rounds allowed the bird ringers to ring the Barn Owl chicks.  As with all owls the eggs are brooded as soon as they are laid so the young hatch at different times. You can see that the eldest chick is beginning to show its feathers through the down, whilst the youngest is still covered in down.  All four young were well fed, so the parents have been successful in finding plenty of food.

The vounteers had worked hard to ensure that the net rides were in perfect condition for CES 6.  This was much appreciated by the bird ringers.  Thank you also to John, Ken and Linda for their invaluable help during the day. 


(1) Comments:

Tim Randall responded on 30th Jun 2019 with...

A wonderful floral discovery - the first of many, I hope.


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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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Damsels and Dragons CANCELLED

Sunday 19th July 2020 | 1.00pm start

The events programme has been temporarily withdrawn. For up to date information this website, FaceBook and other forms of social media should be consulted. If you have donated in advance to secure a place on an event you will be contacted over the next few days and offered a refund. We apologise for this inconvenience.

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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Wednesday 22nd July 2020 | 45 minute sessions on the hour

Come along and find out which animals are living in some of the Foxglove ponds. Book a pond dipping session for your family bubble of up to six people. There will be a socially distanced brief to set you off and then you can use the equipment for the remainder of the session. You will be requested to use hand gel on arrival and the net handles will be cleaned between sessions. Please call the Reserve Managers on 07754 270980 to book your allocated slot. You are advised to arrive 15 minutes before your allocated time. A donation in advance (card payment by phone) of £5 per family bubble is required in order to secure your booking. 



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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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