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Yorkshire Countrywomen’s Association

Friday, July 6th 2018

I combined this morning's usual trip to see the ponies with putting up some new interpretation boards detailing interesting facts and figures of lowland Heaths in the UK, including information regarding the continued maintenance work carried out by Lark and Taurus.

Meanwhile Colin was busy creating more Mink Rafts in the Workshop where I joined him before too long to continue painting and decorating.

On my travels I couldn't help but admire one of our most persecuted plants; like many other wildflowers, Ragwort is poisonous to animals. This poses a problem if it gets mixed into dry hay that is later fed to livestock. In fields however, livestock will avoid it in its green state, and it is in fact mildly poisonous.

One thing that is rarely mentioned is the benefit of Ragwort to nature as a great source of food for pollinator species, such as bees and butterflies (much the same as the equally persecuted Thistle). On top of this there is also the fact that Ragwort is the principle food source for the Cinnabar moth caterpillar (seen below). In the UK the exceptionally vibrant and wonderful Cinnabar moth has seen a dramatic decline of 83% in the last 35 years!

It's now safe to return to reading the blog after my mini rant on persecuted plants (sorry!), and just in time to make mention of our visit by the Yorkshire Countrywomen's Association who enjoyed a talk regarding the Reserve led by Steve, before an extended guided tour taking in all of the wonderful habitats that make up Foxglove.

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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The events programme has been temporarily withdrawn.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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