A Later Start

Sunday, July 17th 2016

Yesterday's blog showed a net ride with a difference.  Compare it to a net ride at Foxglove.  From now on the bird ringers get some extra minutes in bed before heading to carry out CES.  It was 0415 this morning, an extra fifteen minutes sleep after three 4am starts.  The nets were taken down after ten and a half hours.

Taking down the nets

Twenty four different species were processed during that time.  Thirty seven Chiffchaffs and twelve Willow Warblers, mainly juveniles, were newly ringed.  Interestingly, after recording many Great Tits that were ringed in the nest box this year, only a few returned to us today.  It is sometimes 'negative' results that are also of importance.  There were no Reed Buntings or Garden Warblers caught and only one Blackcap.  All our CES results are forwarded to the BTO and a preliminary report is published during the autumn followed by a more detailed study later.

Thak you to everyone who helped today and to the volunteers who keep the nets rides in pristine condition.

We do not just catch birds in the mist nets.  This Narrow-bordered Five-spot Burnet moth was returned to the ringing room.  It was most co-operative and remained on the leaf for a photograph to be taken.  The food plants of the caterpillar include Greater Bird's-foot-trefoil, Meadow Vetchling and Red Clover, all of which grow on the reserve.

Narrow-bordered Five-spot Burnet moth

Although warm when the sun came out from behind the clouds the breeze was cool so there were not many other insects about.  Those that were, were busy.  A bumblebee was hanging onto the Meadow Sweet flowers.

Bumblebee on Meadow Sweet

This hoverfly was eager to land on the thistle.

Hoverfly near thistle

And finally some of the orchids growing are white and we have waited patiently for a specific clump of white orchids to open.  It was important to keep an eye on them as they were not in flower for long as something always came and chewed them.  We presumed that they must be tastier than the pink ones.  They have eventually blossomed and they are no longer white!

Once white, now pink orchids

Our orchids keep us guessing as to their parentage but now we have an added query, how or why do they change colour?


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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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Owl Pellet Discovery - CANCELLED

Wednesday 8th April 2020 | 10.30am 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.

Come and learn all about the different  owl species that live in North Yorkshire. Find out what they eat by dissecting their pellets and identifying the contents.  Recommended for ages 7 years upwards. 

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Suggested minimum donation of £5 per person. Please donate in advance to secure a place.

This event is free for Volunteers and Friends of the reserve.



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Thursday 9th April 2020 | 9.00am - 12 noon

Due to the current situation, the coffee morning has been postponed. The next is planned for October 22nd.

Come and enjoy a relaxing cup of tea or coffee and a 'sticky' at Richmond Town Hall.  There will be a raffle, tombola and a stall selling delicious homemade cakes!  All proceeds from this fundraising event go towards the running costs of the reserve. 

If you would like to donate any cakes or items for the raffle or tombola please take them to the field centre beforehand or to Richmond Town Hall on the day.  No need to book, just turn up!



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