Ringing at the Crater

Sunday, September 12th 2021

This morning some members of the Swaledale Ringing Group arrived at Wilmire Crater, a conservation area on the MOD training area, right on top of the Pennines!  Meadow Pipits use this migration route from their summer breeding grounds out on the moors, right across the Pennines and beyond.  After a quiet start the 'Mipits', as they are affectionately known, began to arrive in the nets.  The majority of the birds caught are juveniles; the adults started south before them. 

Their diet includes many invertebrates and seeds, which are abundant in and around the area.  They need to build up fat stores for their migration.

One of the distinguishing characteristics of these birds is the long hind claw which can be easily seen in this photograph.

Other birds were also caught but in fewer numbers such as a single juvenile Goldfinch seen here.  If you look closely you can just see its red feathers coming through on its head.  A charm is the name given to a group of Goldfinches.  They can often be seen feeding on thistle seed heads.


5 Reed Buntings were also ringed. The UK population of Reed Buntings fell by 31% between 1970 and 2007. This decline was probably caused by the reduction of damp habitats and food sources on farmland. There has been a partial recovery over the last 15 years.  They feed on a variety of seeds and insects. 

Thank you to everyone involoved in this special conservation project including Brian and Ian who strimmed the net rides.

(0) Comments:

There are no comments for this blog post yet. Why not start the discussion? - use the form below:

Leave a Comment:

Please complete this field, it's required. Your email address will not be displayed but it's required.

Your email address will not be displayed but it's required.

Remember my personal information

Notify me of follow-up comments?

Back to Top

Help Support Foxglove

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.

More Details

Upcoming Events

Butterflies and Moths Treasure Trail

Friday 22nd July 2022 | During Reserve Opening Times

Enjoy a walk around the red route (easy access trail) and find the clues to learn all about these wonderful insects. 

Pick up a clue sheet from the Field Centre for only £1 and check your answers at the end.

No booking required as this is a selg guided activity! Please remember to bring a pencil from home.

The clues will be out for the duration of the school summer holidays (North Yorkshire dates).

Pond Dipping 1

Wednesday 27th July 2022 | Various sessions available starting 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 of only £5 per group in advance will confirm your time slot.


Undergrowth Newsletter

Undergrowth Newsletter Autumn 2021 - Issue 56

The reserve's newsletter for Autumn 2021.

Read this Issue

Undergrowth Newsletter Winter 2020/21 Issue 54

Find out what has been going on at the reserve during the lockdown!

Read this Issue

View All The Newsletters

Recent Blog Posts

Blog Archive