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Thursday, 18 September 2014

Autumn Crocus Walk to Ogden, Soil Hill and Oats Royd.

There will be a walk this coming Saturday the 20th of September to see the Autumn Crocus. There should also be plenty Fungi to see. Meet School Lane / Riley Lane junction at 10:30 or Bradshaw Church at 10:45 for a 3 to 4 mile gentle stroll. Bring refreshments.  Bruce.

These are just below Dean Lane, Sowerby, only re-found recently.

The Autumn Crocus are very early this year, which Bruce alerted us to. Any sightings would be gladly received. Take care not to mix them up with Colchicum which is grown in gardens, and misnamed Autumn Crocus by some garden centres.

A good display of them for less mobile people is usually in a roadside field on the left just before the former Withens Pub above Wainstalls at Cold Edge. They have been known there for over 100 years. Steve.



Beautiful Yellow Underwing

 One of the many poetic moth names.


Caterpillar of Beautiful Yellow Underwing c.3cm long

Found on Whirlaw Common, Todmorden, on Sunday last among the Bilberry and Cowberry, where it was put back.

The name is apt for the caterpillar as well. 

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Ring Necked Parakeet

There were 2 of these birds seen over Mytholmroyd last Thursday and today there is one calling and being chased by 2 Jackdaws over Todmorden near the Tudor Chippy.

Monday, 15 September 2014

Autumn Crocus Walk to Ogden, Soil Hill and Oats Royd.

There will be a walk this coming Saturday the 20th of September to see the Autumn Crocus. There should also be plenty Fungi to see. Meet School Lane / Riley Lane junction at 10:30 or Bradshaw Church at 10:45 for a 3 to 4 mile gentle stroll. Bring refreshments.

Thursday, 11 September 2014

Latest update on Hedgehogs in Calderdale

A big thank you to everybody who got in contact with their hedgehog records and a special thank you to Hugh Firman, Steve Blacksmith and Laura Price who have helped and supported me along the way and by creating all the wonderful maps! I'll be leaving the countryside team to return to university but all your records are still in high demand so please send in your sightings with its location/postcode and date to countryside@calderdale.gov.uk


Downloadable distribution map (click on link below)


Betony

Earlier post
When have you last seen a hedgehog? Have you seen or heard a hedgehog rustling around in your back garden or woodland (or even a squished one on the road)? If so, Betony Atkinson, a student placement working with Countryside Services, would like to know. Please send details, including the location and date of the sighting, to betony.atkinson@calderdale.gov.uk to help her draw up a picture of their distribution in Calderdale.








photo – credit to Mrs. Pat  Morris, BHPS





Wednesday, 10 September 2014

Radio Programmes

Book Of The Week: Sapiens - A Brief History Of Humankind

Ep 1-5/5
Tuesday 9 September,Thursday 11 September,Wednesday 10 SeptemberFriday 12 September and Monday 8 September
9.45am-10.00am
BBC RADIO 4
Adrian Scarborough reads from Yuval Noah Harari's ground-breaking account of humankind's remarkable history, from insignificant apes to rulers of the world.
100,000 years ago, at least six human species inhabited the earth. Today there is just one. Far-reaching and provocative, Sapiens challenges everything we thought we knew about being human - ending with a look at what lies ahead for humankind.
Abridged by Penny Leicester.
Reader/ Adrian Scarborough,  Producer / Gemma Jenkins for the BBC
BBC Radio 4 Publicity


Heard this today - very thought provoking - especially after our meeting last night with Neil KIngsnorth's talk on Fracking and Climate Change. Steve B. (Don't know why the schedule is garbled on the right, but you can look it up if you're interested.)

Wednesday, 3 September 2014

Pure white Rose-bay Willowherb seen last month


 Chamerion angustifolium (White variety )

This patch has been known a long time at Ogden. We used to look for it with Frank Murgatroyd who had seen it, but it never seemed to be there. I refound it shortly before he died. It's in a little overgrown quarry at the junction of Keighley Rd. and the Ogden Golf Course turn-off.


On the same day, just after refinding the Ogden patch I found another just 1.5km away in Mixenden. It's not so extensive. The light was going when I visited it this year, but you can see the white flowers against purple heather.

I tend to drive east from the M74 to the Ardrossan ferry port when going to the Hebrides along a winding road, the A70 from Douglas, with many patches of Rose-bay. You can tell how big some of the patches have got, each from a tiny flying seed, as they vary in the pinkness and sometimes flower-spike size. But there's no white along that long road. I've never seen it anywhere else in the wild, and only once in a garden where it was being cultivated. It's probably possible to order it from specialist nurseries.

If we didn't already have the Autumn Crocus, it could be Halifax's Flower.
 (Somebody is going to tell me there's loads of it in Bradford.)

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

Canary Grass; Phalaris canariensis

This Canary grass photo was not taken in Calderdale but just over the hill at Ball Grove Country Park at Cottontree. It was growing in 2 patches at either side of the path. I haven't seen this grass for a while but it is worth looking for it in pavements cracks and stony ground at this time of year.

It is an annual and is mainly seen in gardens, or where bird seed is scattered. To look at, you wouldn't connect it with the same genus as the common Reed Canary Grass Phalaris arundinacea, as it looks entirely different.

Originally from the Canary Isles and Africa, it has been in this country for 400 years and was grown commercially in the early 19thC for bird seed.