Blog Archive (3) Posts Made in March 2023


Heligoland Trap

Friday, March 24th 2023

The Heligoland trap at Foxglove is a large, funnel-shaped structure used to catch birds for ringing. The name is taken from the German island of Heligoland where the first trap of its kind was developed as a way of monitoring bird populations and migration. Over recent years, the Foxglove trap has become increasingly overgrown with large trees poking through the mesh roof and ivy covering the wooden structure. 

Earlier in the winter, tree surgeons from Yorkshire Tree Specialists skillfully pollarded in front of the trap revealing the true scale of the structure. It is huge!

The work by the tree surgeons resulted in a huge mess to be cleared up.

Staff and volunteers worked hard to clear the brash and built several log piles. These will provide important habitat for a range of wildlife, including invertebrates and amphibians.

The inside of the trap was also pollarded and a second tidy up operation began!

Even the cold snowy weather didn't put the volunteers off.

After a massive effort, all the brash was cleared ready for the spring. The extra light reaching the ground will benefit wildflowers and we can't wait to see how it looks in a few months time. 

With the habitat work complete, the next task is to work on the structure itself and ensure that it is safe before any bird ringing takes place. Thank you to everyone who has been involved in this project so far!

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Steps in the Snow!

Monday, March 13th 2023

A team from the Personnel Recovery Centre were not put off by last week's cold snap. They have been working hard in the woodland repairing some steps in desperate need of some TLC. 

Meanwhile, back at the Field Centre, students from the Personalised Learning College made the most of the snowy conditions to have some fun. 

Meet the newest addition to the Foxglove Team!

Thank you to everyone who braved the cold to volunteer on the reserve last week.

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Bilberry Bumblebee Project

Sunday, March 5th 2023

At the end of last summer, Foxglove hosted 'Every Buzz Counts', a fun filled day to celebrate the 2022 Great Big Green Week and the rare Bilberry Bumblebees that we hope to attract to the reserve in the near future. There were crafts and activities for all ages, all made possible by the hard work of an enthusiastic team of volunteers.

The project continues this year with volunteers searching for the Bilberry Bumblebee around Richmondshire. This beautiful bee is a localised and declining species found almost exclusively on moorland in association with Bilberry plants. 

The project is looking for more volunteers to help with gathering data about local bee populations through pollinator surveys in the local area. This will include a training session on bee ID and pollinator transects at Foxglove free of charge thanks to the Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust. Booking is essential for this event. To find out more and book a place, please contact wildwhashton@gmail.com. 

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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


Winter Worky Day

Sunday 3rd March 2024 | 10am - 3pm

The final winter worky day of the season, join Foxglove staff and volunteers for a fun day of practical habitat management. Bring old clothes and sturdy footwear you don't mind getting mucky and a packed lunch. 

Booking essential for this free event. 



Spring Crafts Day

Wednesday 27th March 2024 | 10am-3pm

Spring themed crafts for kids during the Easter holiday. Come along to enjoy the reserve as spring breaks through and have a go at some kid-friendly crafts in the Field Centre classroom.

No booking required. Donations welcome.



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