Our response to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Situation More details

Spring Has Sprung!

Wednesday, April 22nd 2020

Although the reserve remains closed, there are signs of spring everywhere. The Blackthorn blossom is at its best just now especially along the red route.

Willow is also in flower and is stunning against the blue skies.

In the Willow Carr, the air is full of song from Willow Warblers and Chiffchaffs.

The trees that were donated by Bettys Tearooms are beginning to poke their heads above their protective tubes! The mini hedge outside the field centre is doing exceptionally well.

On closer inspection, the trees are really healthy.

A variety of species were planted and all appear to have been a success.

The orchard trees also donated by Bettys Tearooms are growing well too.

These orchards will provide valuable food for winter thrushes such as Blackbirds, Fieldfares and Redwings in the future.

The reedbed that was cut earlier in the year by staff and volunteers is beginning to grow back already.

If you look carefully, you can see plenty of green shoots appearing. Below these, the water is teeming with tadpoles.

Out on the wetland, there are plenty of birds breeding and the first young of the year for the reserve are two delightful broods of Mallards.

There are ducklings scrabbling about on the banks and scooting over the pools!

They seem to be most complacent and have been wandering far from their parents!

All of the above are thanks to the dedicated team of Foxglove volunteers who have worked so hard over the winter months to improve and maintain the mosaic of habitats that make up the reserve. The sad part is that due to the current restrictions, they are unable to visit and to see for themselves what an amazing difference they have made to a very special place. However, it will all be here waiting for when the situation improves.

A quick update on the owl: the Jackdaws buried her several times but have finally got the message and she is doing well with five eggs so far. It is time to leave her undisturbed and hope that she is successful in raising some chicks. Lastly, the beetle that was on the last blog has been identified as the Bloody-nosed Beetle, also called Blood Spewer or Blood Spewing Beetle (what lovely names!) Timarcha tenebricosa. The larvae of which feed on bedstraws.

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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.

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Upcoming Events

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.

Family Pond Dipping 1 - FULLY BOOKED!

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. 


Undergrowth Newsletter

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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