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Island Adventure

Thursday, March 5th 2020

One of the remaining items on the list of habitat management jobs for this winter was to coppice some of the Willow on an island in the Scrapes area. As can be seen in the 'before' photo, the Willow was all one height. Cutting it down to ground level encourages the root system to develop and causes the root stock to thicken, creating new growth from the base. It was decided to cut some of the stems this year and some next year in order to vary the height and not only to look better but to benefit the most wildlife species too.  Another advantage of removing some stools is that more sunlight can reach the ground allowing the wildflowers to flourish.

The first challenge of the day was to get onto the island! An improvised bridge was soon made!

The 'after' picture shows what a positive difference the team have made. The old Sand Martin colony is now once again visible from the main red route. This is no longer used by the birds as there are too many trees in front of it however, plans to build a new one by Spigot Mere where there is much more open water are currently being debated.

It was a beautiful sunny day and the temperature rose during the afternoon. Young people from Northdale helped out by filling bird feeders and looking out for signs of frogs stirring from hibernation.

Volunteers have been working hard all week; continuing to clear up after the storm damage, maintaining net rides, carrying out vital repairs to buildings and fences, organising displays, filling in paperwork and feeding the Exmoor ponies. All of this effort and support is what makes Foxglove the fantastic place that it is for both visitors and wildlife and it is greatly 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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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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