Cromwell Bottom

Cromwell Bottom


April 2015 Updated Link on The future of Cromwell Bottom Sign our PETITION (click) to help Cromwell Bottom
WILDLIFE SITING /IDENTIFICATION Send Details or Pictures of finds for identification click to email RECORDS

Wednesday, 27 May 2015

Return of The Damselflies Variable Damselfly

Last week 21st recorded the first of the Damselflies Shown below the Variable Blue Damsellfy

0648 White-shouldered House-moth Endrosis sarcitrella

This moth is generally found in the House where it is deemed a pest   Below is a typical headshot showing its adapted head structure

Wingspan 13-20mm

White Shouldered house moth 7603

White Shouldered house moth 7362

White Shouldered house moth 7603xx

Monday, 18 May 2015

The Orchid Ecology of Cromwell

I thought I would just add a piece on Orchid reproduction as relevant to Cromwell Bottom in view of a recent misconception by a Wildlife Group Member

Common Spotted Orchid 22030

Orchids reproduce using two potential processes -  vegetative multiplication and sexual reproduction. The degree to which different species of orchid are dependent on each of these processes varies widely.

Successful orchid seed germination requires the correct conditions to be present. Important environmental factors for orchid seed germination include moisture, oxygen, light and warmth. Orchid seeds also require the presence of mycorrhizal soil fungi for successful germination and growth. Mycorrhizal soil fungi are often present in healthy unimproved and undisturbed soils. 

Orchid seeds carry no food reserves   , the nutrients they require to germination and growth are   provided by the fungus. The relationship between developing orchids and mycorrhizal fungi is at first parasitic, but as orchids mature their dependence on the fungi decreases. The extent to which the mycorrhizal infection continues after an orchid reaches maturity is species specific. Some orchid species eventually expel the fungus, while others retain it.

Once infected with the mycorrhizal fungus the germinated seed develops in to a tuber. Once the tuber reaches maturity it produces leaves. These leaves feed the developing orchid tuber for several growing seasons until the orchid has stored enough energy to be able to produce flowers. These flowers attract specific insect pollinators to facilitate sexual reproduction and seed production.

The Ecology Of Cromwell Bottom

Orchids generally favour crude disturbed soils and the ruderal conditions on the capped tipped waste site of  Tag Loop provides aspects of this . The variuous soil moisture and temperature gradients  achieved on the slopes and bleeds into pockets of richer soil  can mean that distributions and densities vary. It is likely where crude soils exists with little sub soil bacteria or humic matter these densities result in vegetative multiplication equally there are areas in the reserve where beneration is by seed germination . There is no exact science here and further observations will provide valuable knowledge into establishing sucessful and sustainable orchid populations on the North Loop. As a generalised statment I suspect Orchid clsuters  found along the river on bankings are predisposed to seeding due to richer soils and those on the harder crude  clay vegetatively.
So before alterring the environment understand it !! 


Common Spotted Orchid
Early Purple Orchid
Broad leaved Helleborine

Follow The Countryside Code

  • Please stay on the paths provided.
  • Please do not pick flowers.
  • Please keep your dog on a lead and shut the gates when you go in and out of  the reserve.
  • Please don’t leave litter.
  • Becoming a Trust member or making a donation will also help us to continue to protect the orchids into the future.

Friday, 15 May 2015

Information On Rights of Way (ROW) adjacent to Cromwell Bottom LNR

Research by Glynn

Please note we are currently ensuring that the FP 042 is adequately signed , maintained and cleared . Its entrance from Elland Rd is to the Right of Cromwell Ho behind the bus stop to Elland  and onward through the wood yard please walk this route to keep this use of right 

The purple line is FP 118 downslope from Southowram  to Elland Rd .Cromwell Bottom Nature Reserve  can be reached by picking up FP042 from Elland Rd to the RIGHT of Cromwell Ho just adjacent to the onward Elland Bus Stop. Procede to the wood yard and move onward to the gates keeping left to the buildings . This is a use of Right and lawful right of way. FP 042 is also a Bridleway so a horse would not be out of place !!

Procede over the Canal Bridge and onward into the Nature reserve pass the Green shed on the right and you will approach the pedestrial brdge over the River Calder . Strangely Brighouse FP 042 changes its status from Bridleway half way accross the bridge where it becomes Elland 014 . Technically neither of these routes are suited  for cycling as they are defined as footpaths not carriageways

Brighouse 042 is a Bridleway
Elland  014 is a Footpath

"As we understand it you need to get  of thee horse alf way cross bridge as becomes footpath for use with thee  legs "

From the map you can see the route of Brighouse Public ROW 042 which is a Bridleway   merging with  Elland 114 ROW  Footpath

a “footpath” over which the right of way is on foot only;

b “bridleway” over which there is a right of way on foot and on horseback, possibly with a right to drive animals;

“carriageway” over which there is a right of way on foot, on horseback, and in or on a vehicle.

Monday, 11 May 2015

Cranefly Tipula varipennis

 Cranefly Tipula varipennis TBC

tipula_varipennis 6361

Todays Natural History

Today seen large numbers of Rhingia campestris a Beaked Hoverfly feeding on Bugle,

Rhingia campestris 6278

Rhingia campestris 6374

Web Like Tongue beneath the Beak ideal for long flower tubes


Cantharids or Soldier beetle where evident Rhagoncho limbatus and Cantharis pellucida   other Coleoptera included the Cream Streaked ladybird and the 7 Spot and Harlequin Ladybird . A large number of Brown Streaked Lochmania crategei Beetles where foun on the Hawtorn host as well as Phyylobius Nettle weevils on the Ground Layer . Mating Craneflies where observed Tipula lateralis TBC . The small Micro Moth 1234 Pammene regiana or Regal Piercer was also recorded . Peacock Butterflies where the main Butterfly in flight throughout the day. Bees such as the Common Carder bombus pratorum and Bombus Terrestris Buf Tailed Bee where on the move . Bluebell where in flower throughout.

Diptera included Bibio pomonae although the larger black B marci is now dying off and of course recognisable by the dangling leg in flight.

Bibio pomonae 6434

Brown Lacewing aslo noted as well as Green . A Soldier Fly was recorded Sargus

Tuesday, 5 May 2015

The Wych Elm Ulmus glabra

Often overlooked Witch Elm Ulmus glabra is potential laravl food for Butterflies like the White letter hairstreak

Wych Elm 6053

Wych Elm 6055

Wych Elm 6052

Wych Elm 6057

Return of The Ladies

Species observed bank Holiday include the Cream Streaked Ladybird , ubiquitous Harlequinnn and the 7-Spot Ladybird

Harlequin 6059

Cream Streaked Ladybird 6063