Minutes of the Meeting Held on Tuesday 27th May at 7-30pm at the University of Hull Scarborough Campus
The President, Robin Hopper, welcomed the 17 Members and Guests present.
Luke Rothery, our Student Representative from the University, would be leaving after final exams. The President thanked him for his contribution and wished him well on behalf of the Society.
Minutes of the Meeting Held on 13th May: As this was an outdoor excursion, no formal minutes were taken. A short description and pictorial display of the Notable Trees was displayed for the benefit of Members.
Correspondence: Several publications had been received.
The YNU 2012 Bird Report.
The April edition of “The Naturalist” from the YNU.
Argus 69 – Yorkshire Butterflies and Moths 2013.
Yorkshire Geological Society Field Meetings Guide 2014.
YGS Yorkshire Geology Month May-June 2014.
Yorkshire Wildlife Trust Spring Magazine.
Records and Reports:
Mick Carroll reported up to eight Cuckoos in Langdale Forest. Linnets, Goldfinches and Bullfinches appeared to be doing well. About 30 pairs of Lapwing on Fylingdales Moor were successfully raising chicks. Only one Red Grouse had been recorded. Chaffinches were in abundance and appeared to be nesting in loose colonies. Mistle Thrushes were common, and Song Thrushes, Blackbirds, Meadow Pipits and Pied Wagtails were doing well. A solitary Raven flew south over May Moss at 16-05 hrs on 16th May. Five Greylag Geese with ten goslings were on Lockton High Moor, and a Common Crane had been seen flying over RAF Fylingdales. Also on the Moor were five pairs of Whinchat and a pair of Yellow Wagtails.
Luke Rothery had also had a Cuckoo in Langdale, as well as two Skylarks. A Wheatear was at Holbeck.
Cedric Gillings had found Great Brome at the Hospital, Knotted Clover at Lebberston, and Sweet Flag in the forestry (only three or four previous VC62 records).
Len Aukland had seen two Red Kites over Staxton, and a Cuckoo. He had found Lily Beetles on “Crown Imperials” and had brought the vivid red insects for Members to see.
Brian Walker offered to lead another trip to see the ancient trees at Helmsley. He showed photographs of Dipper and a fledgling Goosander or Merganser from the Yorkshire Dales, and of Butterburr female flowers – a rare sight in our area.
Robin Hopper had seen several Orange-tip Butterflies near Hutton Buscel and Wykeham Lakes, and reported on the Blyth’s Reed Warbler caught at Hundale on 26th May – a new bird for the Scarborough area. Also present there was a Red-breasted Flycatcher – a rare Spring record.
Steven Bushell reported the Hoopoe seen in Troutsdale, a Wheatear at Surgate, and four Fallow Deer hinds. At Malton Cote Farm there were two Lapwings with three chicks, along with two Yellow Wagtails.
Janice Morritt had seen two Tawny Owls in Woodlands Ravine.
After a short break the speaker for the evening, David Renwick, Director of Conservation at the North York Moors National Park Authority, gave a talk about the Park’s “Connectivity Programme”.
Despite apparent protection offered by National Park status, wildlife was still declining in many areas. Environments had become fragmented and smaller, which meant many specialist species unable to adapt to change were suffering, whilst those of a more generalist nature were doing well. Farmland birds had declined rapidly, and butterflies were showing a slow decline. The fragmented environment meant threatened species could not move into new suitable habitat due to their isolation. The idea was to re-connect wildlife corridors such as hedges and grassland to give a coherent and resistant ecological network. David outlined the Park’s approach, which was to map the environment and target certain threatened areas. Discussion with landowners would lead to proposals for improvement, which would then attract a budget. This was time-consuming, and due to budget restraints and lack of manpower, alternative approaches to mapping were needed. Volunteer groups were important, but new technology, such as satellite imaging and the use of unmanned aerial reconnaissance vehicles (drones) was being explored. These devices could image the ground with different frequencies and build up an accurate picture of terrain and vegetation, which would allow accurate selection of threatened areas to be targeted for improvement.
After questions, The President thanked the speaker, and the meeting closed at 9-15pm.