Residential Fri 15th – 17th June 2012

The residential is approaching faster than expected. So far we only have a few definates and would like to fill more places. Please let us know if you would like a place or any more information. I would also like to arrange a meeting about the residential on 25th May, after the task at Newhall Park. Look forward to hearing from you, Nick

Cattle as Conservation grazers

At the end of February we spent a productive weekend helping with the management of Hutton Roof Crags, a Cumbria Widlife Trust site. Our task was to open up a ride in the woodland for the benefit of buttlerflies. Over the three days we were working there we enjoyed the company of a small herd of cows which live on the reserve, a mix of Redpoll and Shorthorns. 

You may be interested in reading a couple of related articles from recent copies of Conservation Land Management magazine which provide a bit more detail about the use of extensive grazing as a conservation management technique. One of the articles (and the cows featured in both) is by Bill Grayson, the grazier responsible for the cows at Hutton Roof Crags.

If you wish to get an idea of the type of articles in CLM have a look at this website, and then get in touch if you want to read anything in more detail. 

You are welcome to access our books and journals before or after task on Fridays, or at other times by arrangement. You are welcome to use the area outside the office, and you are able to make a hot drink. 


We are planning a residential, either 27th – 29th Jan or 24th – 26th Feb 2012 in Cumbria, please get in contact now, to express interest. A meeting will be held after task on Fri 18th Nov.

Hidden Bradford

This Bradford Facts site was pointed out to me today -it mentions Apple Day, and other places BEES volunteers may know. Whilst it was fun to read, it was also intriguing to know who has created the site. Does anyone know it's origin? If we could contact them we could ask them to link to our website so people can find out more.

Apple Day Volunteers wanted

It's just over a month to Apple Day (9th October). The fruit is ripening on the trees and the final preparations are being made for the event.

We rely heavily on volunteer help to make the day a success so we are interested to hear if you would like to be involved.

Tasks include setting up the marquees, signs and activities before the event starts; welcoming people to the event; helping with activities or in the cafe; and of course clearing up afterwards.

Please let us know if you would like to volunteer so that we organise the team effectively. Please indicate what time and how long you would like to volunteer for. We encourage volunteers to be at an event briefing at 11am, but this is not essential (especially if you want to help clear up at the end of the day), and volunteers will receive food and drink vouchers to use in the cafe at the event.

Thank you, we look forward to seeing you at Apple Day

Get involved in wildlife counts and discussion

Do you want to have your say?

There are just a few days left for you to join the forestry conversation
Following the change in decision to sell off public forests, The Independent Panel on Forestry has launched a "call for views" which ends on 31st July 2011. You can read more about this on the Woodland Trust website.

Big Butterfly Count. Spend 15 minutes in a sunny place and count the number of butterflies you see - but you must do it by the 31st July.  Butterfly Conservation have produced an id guide to help you. You can search the results to see what other people have seen across the country or even narrowinging it down to Bradford sightings. Check out their website.

Wildlife Wanders Programme Update

Wildlife Wanders is a new project funded by Big Lottery Awards 4 All programme. The aim of the project is to introduce new audiences to wildlife, whilst also giving people already involved a chance to learn more. There will be a mix of practical skills training and species identification.

The first few dates of the Wildlife Wanders programme have been confirmed as:

* Wednesday 13/7/11 5.30pm (or meet YMCA 5.00pm) Moorland Flowers and Birds

Baildon Moor, Top Car Park, Bingley Road.

A chance to visit the area of moorland that BEES have been controlling the bracken for several years. This visit will give us a chance to look in more detail at the moorland plants and birds.

* Wednesday 20/7/11 5.30 – 7.30pm Wildlife Recording with West Yorkshire Ecology

YMCA Building, Little Horton Lane, Bradford, BD5 0JG.

West Yorkshire Ecology will lead us through the natural history records held by the service, how we can access them and submit our own records in the future.

* Saturday 23/7/11 3 – 5pm Dragonflies and Damselflies

BEES Urban Nature Reserve, University Campus, Laisteridge Lane.

Steve Warrillow will lead this session at BEES UNR, which has two well developed ponds. We hope for a good number of dragonflies and damselflies for us to learn about and how to identify.

* Wednesday 27/7/11 8.00 - 10.30(approx) Bat Walk

Ian Butterfield will lead a walk to discover and identify bats in Roberts Park and the surrounding area. There wil be refreshments and an introduction about bats in the Half Moon cafe before we set off at around dusk.

Other elements of the programme are to be finalised but provisional dates are:

* Saturday 6/8/11 3 – 6pm

*Wednesday 10/8/11 5.30 – 7.30pm

* Wednesday 17/8/11 5.30 – 7.30pm

* Saturday 20/8/11 3 – 6pm

* Wednesday 24/8/11 5.30 – 7.30pm

* Wednesday 31/8/11 5.30 – 7.30pm

* Saturday 3/9/11 3 – 6pm

Topics to include: Urban sites, Flowers, Grasses, Insects, Moorland plants and Lichens

* Transport will be provided from the YMCA to the venues. Please contact the office to reserve a seat on the minibus

Wildlife Wanders

I can now confirm the first few dates of the Wildlife Wanders programme:

  • Wednesday 20/7/11 5.30 – 7.30pm Wildlife Recording led by West Yorkshire Ecology
  • Saturday 23/7/11 3 – 5pm Dragonflies and Damselflies at BEES UNR led by Steve Warrillow
  • Wednesday 27/7/11 8pm(tbc) Bat Walk at Roberts Park led by Ian Butterfield

Other elements are to be finalised but provisional dates are: 

  • Wednesday 13/7/11 time(tbc) Baildon Moor
  • Saturday 6/8/11 3 – 6pm
  • Wednesday 10/8/11 5.30 – 7.30pm
  • Wednesday 17/8/11 5.30 – 7.30pm
  • Saturday 20/8/11 3 – 6pm
  • Wednesday 24/8/11 5.30 – 7.30pm
  • Wednesday 31/8/11 5.30 – 7.30pm
  • Saturday 3/9/11 3 – 6pm

Topics to include: Urban site Flowers Grasses Insects Moorland plants Lichens

  • Please contact the office to reserve a seat on the minibus 
  • Transport will be provided from the YMCA to the venues

BEES Funding

We have received confirmation that our grant from the Council's Community Funding Unit has been extended until March 2012, with an 8.8% reduction from last year. This grant covers about 45% of the costs of the conservation volunteer programme, the wildlife field visits and a range of other community environmental education projects and events. We still have a significant task to raise more funds but the CFU grant gives us a great basis to build on.

Blossom Day Friday 6th May 2011 Bowling Park Community Orchard

Between 11-3 come and enjoy the orchard's tree blossom spectacle. We will carry out our spring maintenance tasks and there may be activities for visiting groups. Contact the office for further information.

Find out more about the orchard including directions here

P.S. fingers crossed there will be blossom on the trees - I have seen some already and it is only mid April! However it will still be a lovely time to visit the orchard

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