Monthly Archives: May 2019

Ash trees are dying.

This year Ash Dieback (Hymenoscyphus fraxineus) has progressed from killing saplings and into mature trees. I hardly see any mature tree that is not showing dieback or is nearly dead; wherever I go.

In nearby limestone areas where Ash is a major component of the landscape, there will shortly be huge devastation. All the field trees will be gone and the landscape will be laid waste. We have been suitably warned about this and should have been planting field and boundary trees as replacements.  But this isn’t happening.

No shortage of new ‘woodlands’ but trees are out of favour and forgotten.

2019-05-31T17:32:00+01:00May 31st, 2019|0 Comments

This wool is alive

The bark of this tree has white waxy woolly areas, which has been secreted as a covering by the Felted Beech Scale insect (Cryptococcus fagisuga). It only inhabits Beech species.

No male insects have ever been found and fertilisation is not required for the offspring (parthenogenesis).

The scale insect makes small incisions and feeds on the soft tissues of the bark but does not cause serious damage to the tree. Damage occurs when the Nectria coccinea fungus spores gain entry to the tree through the feeding holes. This fungus then blocks the tree’s vascular system, causing serious injury or death.

Damage was so serious that in 1902 the Rev. Wilks feared that –“Beech is doomed all over the country and the next generation will only know by pictures how gloriously beautiful our forest Beeches have been”.

Look out for this often seen woolly covering and think what damage a tiny 1/16″ insect can precipitate in such a huge tree.

2019-05-27T21:56:00+01:00May 27th, 2019|0 Comments

Matt Grass

Matt Grass–Nardus stricta, does not advertise itself and is easily missed when growing in a meadow. But during flowering its white anthers capture attention.
Photo taken near Grassington
2019-05-27T13:59:00+01:00May 27th, 2019|0 Comments

Female Pied Flycatcher

The mate of the male posted last week. Today seen entering the nestbox.
Not such a great picture but shows her brown and white appearance. She has a bold white patch on each closed wing. Admittedly this might sound like the description of a female Chaffinch, but this small image maybe captures the typical flycatcher shape, ‘sweet’ face and beak. Noticed the ring?

2019-05-23T21:32:00+01:00May 23rd, 2019|0 Comments

Beech seedlings

Many people see Beech tree cotyledons and wonder what plant they are. This is because they bear no resemblance to the ‘true’ leaves which grow a few weeks later.

In this photo you can see the cotyledons (which are not dependent on photosynthesis but use the stored nutrition in the seed for growth) and growing above them the beech leaves we all recognise.

2019-05-22T23:47:00+01:00May 22nd, 2019|0 Comments

Further to the Moorland Fires earlier post

Consultation of Public Space Protection Orders to prevent moorland fires
Following our previous email correspondence, we can confirm that we have added two additional drop in sessions next week, meaning we now have four sessions in total and continue to utilise social media and other outlets to promote our consultation.
Drop in sessions, where anyone is welcome to attend and share their views, will be held as below:
Tuesday 21st May, 5pm – 7pm at Ripponden Parish Council Offices
Saturday 25th May, 10am – 1pm at Ripponden Parish Council Offices
Sunday 26th May 1pm – 3pm at Todmorden Town Hall.
Should you have any queries please do not hesitate to contact us in the Community Safety Team.
Sarah J Barker
Senior Community Safety & Resilience Officer
Neighbourhoods
Public Services
Calderdale MBC
Spring Hall Mansion
Huddersfield Road
Halifax

HX3 0AQ

2019-05-21T20:56:00+01:00May 21st, 2019|0 Comments

Double Flowered Cuckoo Flower

Sadly we didn’t find the Cuckoo Flower today.
It may flower at little later so could still appear.
Here are some pictures taken in 2015.
These aren’t the tyical “Double Flowered” variety which has several layers of petals
An entire flower grows from the centre of the other

The grassland along this stretch of Black Brook has changed a lot in the last 12 months.
This was clearly once excellent unimproved grassland but had become rank,
covered in brambles, docks and thistles with a lot of scrub hawthorn and gorse moving in.
Much of that has now gone and cattle have been put on.
Hopefully this grassland will now return to it’s former glory
and we may even find it a good Waxcap Fungi site in the Autumn.
2019-05-18T15:36:00+01:00May 18th, 2019|0 Comments

A little beauty that returns in spring

These were photographed on 16th May in one of our Upper Calder Valley oakwoods.
It’s not all that common in our area but now known in 3 or 4 cloughs, probably more if they are searched carefully, with ears ready for a slightly feeble repetitive little song.

Pied Flycatcher male

Same bird. He visited two boxes trying to get a female interested. 
We saw him mate with her but it was so quick I didn’t get a picture. Females are brown and white.
They take readily to nestboxes. Taken with a compact Lumix DMC-TZ60
I saw my first Spotted Flycatchers of the year on the same day! First time I’ve got them both on the same day for a new season’s sightings.
2019-05-17T21:15:00+01:00May 17th, 2019|0 Comments

Swifts

My first sighting of 6 swifts over Centre Vale at Tod; this teatime.
2019-05-10T18:27:00+01:00May 10th, 2019|0 Comments

A post from Hugh Firman, Calderdale Council

Public Spaces Protection Orders (PSPO)

Working together to prevent moorland fires – everyone has a part to play

Calderdale Council is working proactively with West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service and West Yorkshire Police to prevent moorland fires, but all agencies also depend on the vigilance and care of those who are out and about in our wonderful countryside to play an active part in protecting it.
To take part in the consultation and for more information, see: Moorland Fires and the PDFPublic Spaces Protection Order [PDF 706KB].
The Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) replaced the:
This was introduced under the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014, on 20th October 2017.
If there is evidence of behaviour in a public space that has, or is likely to have:
  • an adverse effect on the quality of life of the community;
  • and the behaviour is persistent / ongoing and not reasonable;
a PSPO can be introduced by the Council. These can include specific behaviour restrictions and/or requirements for people to abide by, on any public space in question.
Note: All anti-social behaviour can be considered for a Public Spaces Protection Order, not just dog or alcohol issues.

Existing Designated Public Place Orders (DPPO) and Dog Control Orders (DCO)

The change to the law came into effect on 20th October 2017. From this time, current DPPO and DCOs were treated as provisions of a PSPO.
Signage for the DPPO and DCOs has been changed to help raise public awareness. The Council will review current orders and consider amending conditions by 20th October 2020. unless extended before this date, the orders will expire.
2019-05-09T22:40:00+01:00May 9th, 2019|0 Comments
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