Over the years I have noticed that ground nesting warblers like the Willow Warblers and Chiffchaffs have been looking at territories in spring at Raw Nook LNR but few have actually bred.
One of the reasons for this is Bramble that has encroached into their favourite nesting areas within the site. So on Saturday it was our groups conservation morning and we all set about clearing the dense Bramble and cutting down some small saplings to let more light into the area. It was hard work! but worth it as we all hoped that when the males arrived back in spring they should find a more suitable nesting habitat.
Following on from my sighting of a Barn Owl in our area on the 22/10/23. There has been another excellent sighting…well in fact a video of a Barn Owl (Thank you Tracey) this time in the Cleckheaton area.
I suspect this is the same bird that I sighted at East Bierely and a member of the public who reported a ‘ Whitish looking owl ‘ at Caldene fields Low Moor in November 23.
In winter a Barn owl will move further for it’s food than it will in the breeding season when food will be more plentiful.
The distance between the Cleckheaton site and Raw Nook LNR is approximately 4 miles as the crow(Owl) flies, which is well in the range of a winter feeding owl.
I remember a few years ago seeing a Common Buzzard in our area which was a site first! and now last year I found a juvenile been fed by an adult which was excellent news.
Fingers crossed the same happens with the Barn Owl and it breeds in the south Bradford area.
I more than welcome any further sightings in our area and the Spen Valley.
Today at Toad Holes Beck I heard the call of a Nuthatch. This is the third report now of the rare species to our area. The first brief view was of a bird in my garden during August.
The bird must be feeding well and liking the habitat in our area lets hope like the recent arrival of the Tree Creeper that now breeds in Toad Holes Beck the Nuthatch finds a mate and well…let’s nature take it course!
Any sightings of our guest in our area please let me know, Thank you.
A fungi walk was arranged with the Bradford Environmental Education Service for the 24th of October at Raw Nook NR and there was a common theme…IT WAS RAINING!
But we were not deterred and while I showed the group around the site it was down to John Gavaghan who is certainly more knowledgeable on fungi than I am.
We started in the meadow area with not that much found. However, I manage to show them the lovely Saffron milk cap which found previously by YWT by a small number of Scots Pines. John gave some valuable tips to the group about firstly identifying the species of trees/habitat and then asking the question does it match with the habitat of your species ?
One of the group found a great example of the very common The Candlesnuff fungus.
What is slightly unusual here is you never really get a good view of the black base of this fungi whereas with this find you do.
Despite the rain John identified more and more species like The Fiery Milkcap which lived up to it’s name!, Blushing Bracket, Hairy Curtain Crust, Snowy Waxcaps lots of Sulphur Tuft, Brown Birch Bolete, an emerging Blusher, Deceivers, Fly Agarics (they like birch woodland), Pipe Clubs, and Lilac Bonnet.
As we walked along the path I had a trick up my sleeve. Earlier in the month YWT had found a stained turquoise coloured twig of the Green Elf cup fungus and I kept it to show the BEEs group, sadly though we didn’t find the actual fruiting body.
I knew an area by the pond which has the aptly named Ugly Milkcap. Whilst looking for this species I saw a small orange fungi sticking out of the ground. I had a good idea that it was the Scarlet Caterpillar club fungus but thankfully John confirmed the sighting.
We all managed to get photo’s and we discussed all about the species which is a parasitic fungus that grows on the larvae and pupae of moths.
By now had reached the pond but there was one more surprise a A sulphur knight was confirmed by the Oak tree.
We had not had any dinner we were soaked and reached the half away point of the reserve and sadly the decision was taken to call it a day.
However, we had found a respectable 29 different species (with a couple still not ID ) and one new species for the reserve Hairy Curtain Crust – Stereum hirsutum.
I would like to thank John for his ID skills and the rest of the group for making the walk, despite the weather a really enjoyable day.
On Saturday the 14th of October the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust held our annual Fungi walk at Raw Nook NR Low Moor Bradford.
It was lead by fungi expert Kat Woolly with Jess, Sarah Goldsmith and Peter Gurney.
Thankfully the weather was fine however, as I walked through RN to meet Kat I didn’t see too many fungi and commented to Kat ‘ There may not be many fungi about ‘
As we had only been in the meadow a few minutes when an excited Kat found a Snowy Waxcap ( A site first). As always Kat explained to the group about it’s identification and status.
For those that know RN, within the meadow is our ‘Hidden hideaway’ which an dark area surrounded by Hazel and Willow shrubs and is excellent for fungi and we soon found our first fungi a White saddle Helvella crispa
I was keeping the notes and recorded the species found and it wasn’t long before another new species appeared ‘ Jelly Rot’
My list quickly got up to 15 as we moved to the meadow area near to the railway where there is small group of Scots Pines.
We all started to search this area when suddenly Jess let out a rather excited shout!
We all gathered round as she explained that she had found an Earpick Fungus ( Again another new species) which grows on conifer litter and conifer cones, so searching the pines proved successful.
We then walked towards the pond area for lunch finding many common fungi on the way.
What was interesting for the group was learning about the different smells some fungi have from Kat.
A great example of this was the Coconut Milkcap which as you have guessed smell exactly like a coconut! and is regular at the site.
So we had a short lunch by the pond as like always at Raw Nook when searching for fungi…time just goes!
We now headed to the Oak and meadow area at the top of the site to look for Waxcaps but sadly there were few about. However, Peter found a rather strange Puffball which turned out to be a Pestle Puffball Lycoperdon excipuliforme which again was a new species for the site.
As time was catching up we started to walk back but taking a different path.
Whilst more common species were recorded there was still excitement in the air.
As more new species were found like Fool’s Funnel and Penny bun.
Before the start of the walk our fungi species list was 109.
We recorded 43 species on the day of which 13 were new for the site As below.
Jelly Rot Fungus- Phlebia tremellosa
Snowy Waxcap Cuphopphyllus virgineus
Earpick Fungus Auriscalpium vulgare
White Fibrecap Inocybe geophylla
Purple Jellydisc Ascocoryne sarcoides
Sulpher Knight Tricholoma sulphureum
Green Elfcup Chlorociboria aeruginascens
Scarletina Neoboletus luridiformis
Penny bun Boletus edulis
Pestle Puffball Lycoperdon excipuliforme
Brown Birch Bolete Leccinum scabrum
Grisette Amanita vaginata
Fools Funnel Clitocybe rivulosa
However, there was one more excellent surprise for the group when hawk eye Sarah Goldsmith found a small greenish piece of wood.
This was identified by Jess as Green Elfcup Chlorociboria aeruginascens.
Then a further search and a bigger piece of wood was found showing the individual fruit bodies.
So all in all it was an excellent walk and for me 13 new species were found bringing our total to 122 different species of fungi recorded.
We would like to thank Kat, Jess, Peter and Sarah at Yorkshire Wildlife Trust for all their ID skills and organising this wonderful annual event.
Had PC problems so been off-line for a week or so. Thankfully all is well now.
It’s October and that means migrating birds are passing over our area and the last week has been good. It started on the 2rd when a Peregrine flew S and a total of 16 Crossbills also moved S.
On the 9th there was an early arrival of Thrushes from the N with a total of 9,559 recorded either overhead or viewed from the watch point.
The Pink-footed geese started to arrive again from the N on the 10th with a final total of 1,989 recorded.
The weather before dawn on the 11th was 5c well down on the previous few days and this inspired Wood Pigeon to move down to the S with 1,281 observed.
On a local note I received some interesting news from Josie who lives in Oakenshaw. She stated that she has had a Nuthatch feeding in her garden! and even sent a photo of her special visitor. Our area in general does not have the habitat for Nuthatch however, I had a bird briefly in my garden in June at Low Moor which ‘MAY’ be the same bird as Josie’s. It would be lovely if the species takes hold in our area…Let’s hope he/she finds a mate in Spring.
Privacy & Cookies Policy
Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. This category only includes cookies that ensures basic functionalities and security features of the website. These cookies do not store any personal information.
Any cookies that may not be particularly necessary for the website to function and is used specifically to collect user personal data via analytics, ads, other embedded contents are termed as non-necessary cookies. It is mandatory to procure user consent prior to running these cookies on your website.