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Sylvia Warblers

Tuesday, May 5th 2020

In bird taxonomy the warblers are a large family of insect-eaters. Sylvia warblers live in dense thorny thickets and woodland and there are three species that can be found at Foxglove during May. The Garden Warbler (Sylvia Borin) is a summer visitor and has only just arrived back from tropical Africa. It has an 'anonymous' appearance; an olive brown-grey colour and has no obvious features. 

The Whitethroat (Sylvia communis) is also a summer visitor spending its winters South of the Sahara. The female (pictured here) has a brownish head whereas the male has a grey head. 

The Blackcap (Sylvia atricapilla) is similar in build to the Garden Warbler but is grey above and olive-grey below. The male has a black cap and the female has a rufous brown one. Since the 1960s, the number of Blackcaps which spend winter in the UK has increased. They can now be seen in some gardens all year round. Scientists believe this could be due to the bird food put out by people which makes spending the winter here a viable option for Blackcaps.

If you see a Blackcap during winter, you can add details of your sighting to Birdtrack, a BTO, RSPB and Birdwatch Ireland project. By collecting information about where birds are when, more can be learned about their changing behaviour and populations.


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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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Minibeast Safari 1

Wednesday 5th August 2020 | 45 minute sessions on the hour

Come along and find out which minibeasts are living in some of the habitats at Foxglove. Book a minibeast 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 equipment 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. 



Minibeast Safari 2

Wednesday 12th August 2020 | Various time slots available

Come along and find out which minibeasts are living in some of the habitats at Foxglove. Book a minibeast 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 equipment 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. 



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The Dragonflies of Strensall and Foxglove Covert
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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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