Monthly Archives: November 2012

Results of the AGM and the fate of the Library

Fifteen attended; not an unexpectedly low number for a November meeting on a cold night and considering it was the AGM.
    Dr Paul Ruffle of Jodrell Bank and Manchester University was elected President. He lives at Mytholmroyd. Two other people were elected new members.
All the other existing officers and recorders accepted nomination and were re-elected.
   We looked at about 50 slides from Frank Murgatroyd’s collection of about 1500!
I had found some pictures of past members as well as orchids of Britain; views in Calderdale, Cumbria and Wales; historic buildings in Calderdale; fungi and ferns. Just some of the many things represented in Frank’s collection of slides.
                                           __________________________________

The following night, Wednesday, I went to shout at the demonstration outside the Town Hall against the library demolition. I even got a ticket to go in and witness the full Council Meeting. The public area was full.
Unfortunately, as expected, the minute “to relocate the library in a new building adjacent to the bottom edge of the Piece Hall, next to Square Chapel” was passed. ( Not the official wording.) Several Councillors spoke passionately in favour of renovating the existing building, to loud applause and cheers from the public and other councillors, but to no avail. There was feeble applause for those speaking in favour of demolition – they knew they had the majority.

This could take many years to take place. (The Broad Street Development took 20!) And the Economic situation could change or some other factor come in to delay or alter the decision.

The proponents of the scheme think they have given the opponents a big consession by saying the lending library and the archives will now be kept together in the same building, and not seperated, as once proposed, but they are completely  vague about the archives. They never refer to the 3 collections: the Archives of Halifax in the Reference Library; the books/archives of Halifax Antiquarians, and last but not least, the archives and books of Halifax Scientific Society. Apparently one councillor looked at our book cases and assumed these was the whole of the the three collections!
The Library Archivist told me there are over 3,000,000 items in their collection alone, on the top floor of the library.

Anyway, many of us may not see it happen. We must be stoical and keep on meeting, recording and reporting on scientific subjects including Natural History while keeping our options open about the future. We survived a major upheaval in the early 1980s when our predecessors moved everything down from the old Central Library at Belle Vue near Peoples Park. We can survive this as well.
Steve Blacksmith, Chair.

2012-11-29T18:55:00+00:00November 29th, 2012|0 Comments

A Red Data List Fungus in Calderdale

Violet Coral Clavaria zollingeri

We need to pinpoint where this appears by satellite navigation. Michael Sykes, our Fungus Recorder, found it a few years back. The only other person who saw it was the late Colin Duke, our other Fungus Recorder.

If Michael feels up to it, and dependant on weather, I propose to go looking on December 15th, instead of the Stoodley Glen foray. We’ve been up there once already this autumn. The more pairs of eyes the better.

We will be meeting at the same place, on the main Hebden Bridge – Todmorden Road, at Eastwood Cricket ground, 10.30 for 10.45. We will drive along a short way and walk from another parking spot.

The rare Clavaria grows near Blackshaw Head. Mike took the above photo on 30th October 2006, but there is a chance, if it came up this year, that it might be still visible.

2012-11-24T16:27:00+00:00November 24th, 2012|0 Comments

Fascinating Earth-tongue Fungi

Cordyceps militaris or Scarlet Caterpillarclub id by MWS.
It grows an the body of a dead butterfly or moth larva or pupa, its mycelium replacing the 
insides of the dead insect.

These come in a wide range of colours. Sometimes intermingled as if the mycelia are associated in some way.

 An altenative name for the group is the Fairy Clubs.

And a little mushroom. All these were in the same lawn – a nice, unfertilised, closely-shorn lawn with plenty of moss!  It’s at Saville Park, Halifax.

2012-11-23T23:42:00+00:00November 23rd, 2012|0 Comments

Hardcastle Crags. 10th November 2012.

The highlight of the walk through the Crags for my son Oliver, was when he found a Jelly Ear, Auricularia auricularia – judae. It felt so amazing, he even took a piece to bed with him!

FROM STEVE: that’s a lovely story about Oliver. He’s definitely a budding mycologist 🙂

Auricularia auricularia-judae – Jelly Ear


Oyster Mushroom (Pleurotus ostreatus)

This was growing out of a hollow at the bottom of a tree. Tongue shaped caps and it had a very tough stem. Maybe Hen of the Woods.

One of the smaller Inkcap Coprinus species.
                  Flammulina velutipes, Velvet Shank

 A Scleroderma – Earthball
Thanks for your posting, Alison. Sorry, haven’t done them all – have to get my tea now.
(I’ve solved the problem of invisible text on my screen – downloaded Google Chrome, so you can just send it at the normal size.)

2012-11-19T10:37:00+00:00November 19th, 2012|0 Comments

Mycena capilaris

Found by Michael this morning in Crimsworth Dean, who photographed and identified it.
He says it’s not uncommon on fallen Fagus (Beech) but it’s so very tiny, it’s not often noted.

Mycena are a  numerous group. Bonnets is the common name. Named after an ancient tribe – the Mycenae – who wore a distinctive bonnet.

2012-11-19T00:53:00+00:00November 19th, 2012|0 Comments

A little mushroom on the HSS walk on Sat.17th Nov

It was also seen on the October walk, the foray to Stoodley Glen, but not identified then.
I think it’s Hare’s Foot Inkcap Coprinus lagopus. (Hares and rabbits are Lagomorphs.)

Both specimens were on high, open pasture, recently grazed.

It’s said to be edible but not worthwhile. The cap’s only up to about 4cm high (1.5 inches).

P.s. HSS stands for Halifax Scientific Society.

2012-11-19T00:18:00+00:00November 19th, 2012|0 Comments

Pictures from the HSS monthly walk on Sat. 17th

Looking East from Pudsey Clough towards Todmorden. Stoodley Pike just visible. 
All pictures of Pudsey Clough

Viburnum bodnantense in its November glory. Flowers all winter 
and has a gorgeous scent. This is at Back Rough Farm, by the track.

A waterfall, name unknown, and a Wych Elm, not yet leafless.

Winter sun.

Not many birds about, but Raven seen well and its “pruck pruck” call heard; nuthatch down here in the valley. I  found a singing male Ring Ouzel up by the quarry once in spring.  It’s the most mountainous corner of Calderdale.
The stream was strongly coloured with peat as it poured through the cylindrical stone culvert under the quarry track. This is a rare type of construction in the Pennine Hills .Only 2 people on the walk.

2012-11-18T23:52:00+00:00November 18th, 2012|0 Comments

A big Waxwing winter ?

Ten are feeding at Brighouse, in Sainsbury’s car park. I’m just going along there now.
Watch out for them on any berried trees and shrubs. They especially like urban plantings.

UPDATE: Still there Tuesday morning 19th Nov. according to a text from Dave Sutcliffe.

2012-11-18T16:27:00+00:00November 18th, 2012|0 Comments

Saturday’s Walk

Pudsey Clough is at the furthest western edge of Calderdale.

If anyone is daunted by the distance and would like a lift, there will be pick-up points outside the Central Library in Halifax, and Russel Dean’s Car Park in Mytholmroyd.

Ring me on 01422 348222 or mobile 0771 500 5379 to arrange lifts.

We will be walking only about 3 miles exploring the deep cloughs always on paths, some slighty wet and slippy, and some steep.

There will be opportunities to foray for fungi, view the unusual goeology in the form of steep cliffs and dramatic rock outcrops, and see the woods of native trees, where I have seen Spotted Flycatcher nesting. There may be wintering as well as native birds about. Part of the way takes us out on to the open tops, as far as Burnley Old Road (Long Causeway) and back down to Cornholme.

Bring a packed lunch and something damp-proof to sit on. Meet on the Burnley Rd. at 10.30 for a 10.45 start.

2012-11-15T20:37:00+00:00November 15th, 2012|0 Comments
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