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, 21 December 2016

Deer Sightings & Christmas News

A number of Reindeer have been sighted in the Calderdale Area and have made there way close to Old Earth primary School and onto  the Nature reserve

Children in Cumbria ( Year 3 ) have also this year been tasked to sing a traditional Christmas Song -  in Japanese,. We used this as a Tune witrh a little help from Mrs Ashton on Piano


Santa Tracking Anyone who does not know our friends at NORAD run a free Santa Tracker which goes on line 24 hours before Mr Claus begins his journey you can follow him accross the world as he makes his journey to deserving Children

Satelite Tracker Active 24 hrs before Christmas day journey

Chistmas elves or santas elves, are magical creatures clad in red or green (Christmas colors),and  live and work in the North Pole. They are Santa's little helpers, making toys in Santa's workshop.

Also included in their job description is taking care of Santa's reindeer, maintaining the sleigh, sorting through Santa's letters from the children and making sure that those children are asleep before Santa delivers presents on Christmas Eve.

Merry Christmas

Cryptic Crossword For "Moth" ers

Christmas is coming Nothing Much is moving on the Moth Front -  but here is an opportunity to Brush up on  50 British Species albeit in a Cryptic Way . This is a great opportunity for Moth Gurus to show their Skill Prowess and Knowledge !!!!!!!!! 

I wonder if anyone can complete it ( apologies in advance for the Cryptic Clues but be thankful it was'nt a crossword on Craneflies :-)  ) Best of Luck !!

Apologies on quality of grid Please save from image click and print off to complete the Grid . The saved image can be blown up on Windows viewer if you need to make numbers clearer


  2 Something speckled best served with seasoning ?  
  5 Flown to close to the Lamp ?  
  6 A score of Feathers ?  
  8 Not a Brussels Sprout but same Family  
  12 Spick & Span nicely polished  
  13 A seasonal expectation this time of Year ?  
  17 Combustion at the sides of neck ?  
  19 This one is a big green Jewel  
  20 Two Birds in one !!!!!!  
  22 High Flier with the Cartography  
  24 German Folk likely seen around Whitby ?  
  29 Invasive suite plays its cards right this year  & returns
  31 Calderdales flooring dilemma  
  35 Works in the Woodland ?  
  36 Regal Oriental  
  38 Underneath the Bridge on a dimly lit night ?  
  40 This Common moth is no slow coach  
  42 Geometry in sun glasses ?  
  44 Female Geriatric  
  45 Not a newspaper or revealing angel  
  46 something of a nosy creature ?  
  47 Lawn all in a Tangle ?  
  49 Something of a Romany ???  

  50 A quick sweep and clean up


  1 Citrus gets chilled on cold winter day  
  3 Weather looking overcast at the edge ?  
  4 Fast Citrus  
  7 Butler with healthy complexion  
  9 One fat ladywell proportioned & not much more?Bingo ?
  10 Dull Stain on the best Crockery ?  
  11 here we go round the planet ?  
  14 Moon beneath the flight structures ???  
  15 Nellie and the Raptor ?  
  16 Lets paint the bridge beige and admire its structure ??  
  18 An obvious Stone ?  
  21 Criss Cross across the Moor ?  
  23 Not quite a Popular Raptor ?  
  25 Hot footed flooring ?  
  26 Just as you thought you have bailed the criminal !!  
  27 Bright one on the sea shore ??  
  28 Not a water carpet but a small stream ?  
  30 A maker of Flour ?  
  32 This moth has things in common with Santa Reindeer  
  33 Beware the ides of March ? Get the Point ?  
  34 A ribbon at Sea  
  37 The answer could be right at the side of your Head ???  
  39 The answer would be on the end of your Nose  
  41 Two pints and a Packet of Crisps please ?  
  43 Spooky Candidate  

  48 What the Farmer works with !!!

Thursday, 27 October 2016

All The Leaves Are Brown ?

This is a very simplied view to leaf Colour. With the Season under way Natures Canvas paints its own Picture with the surrounding Hillslopes and  nature reserve settling into Autumn

GREEN- Is due to a pigment know as Chlorophyll the chlorophyll's green color dominates and masks out the colors of any other pigments that may be present in the leaf during the grow season. As Autumn approached Trees undergo practical changes due to harsher temperature and lower light levels allowing other colours to appear Chlorophyll, which gives leaves their basic green color. It is necessary for photosynthesis, the chemical reaction that enables plants to use sunlight to manufacture sugars for their food. Trees in the temperate zones store these sugars for their winter dormant period.


Veins that carry fluids into and out of the leaf are gradually closed off as a layer of special cork cells forms at the base of each leaf. As this cork layer develops, water and mineral intake into the leaf is reduced, slowly at first, and then more rapidly. It is during this time that the chlorophyll begins to decrease.

Often the veins will still be green after the tissues between them have almost completely changed color.

As the chlorophyll breaks down, the green color disappears, and the yellow to orange colors become visible and give the leaves part of their fall splendor.Orange Yellows can be due to carotenes and xanthophyll. Carotenoids, which produce yellow, orange, and brown colors in such things as corn, carrots, and daffodils, as well as rutabagas, buttercups, and bananas.


At the same time other chemical changes may occur, which form additional colors through the development of red anthocyanin pigments. Some mixtures give rise to the reddish and purplish fall colors of trees such as dogwoods.Anthocyanins, which give color to such familiar things as cranberries, red apples, concord grapes, blueberries, cherries, strawberries, and plums. They are water soluble and appear in the watery liquid of leaf cells.

Weather Affects Color Intensity

Temperature, light, and water supply have an influence on the degree and the duration of autumn color. Low temperatures above freezing will favor anthocyanin formation producing bright reds in maples. However, early frost will weaken the brilliant red color. Rainy and/or overcast days tend to increase the intensity of fall colors. The best time to enjoy the autumn color would be on a clear, dry, and cool (not freezing) day

Saturday, 27 August 2016

The King of Fishers

Size and Colour

Common Kingfishers measure 17 – 19 centimetres in length, weigh between 34 – 46 grams and have a wingspan of 25 centimetres. Their beak is around 4 centimetres long and pointed. Kingfishers have short, orange coloured legs.

Lens Standard 300mm Tamron non-stabilised lens

Kingfisher 2837

Kingfishers have very keen eyesight. The kingfisher has monocular vision (in which each eye is used separately) in the air and binocular vision (in which both eyes are used together) in water. The underwater vision is not as a sharp as in the air, however, the ability to judge the distance of moving prey is more important than the sharpness of the image.

Where To see Them

Kingfishers are found by still or slow flowing water such as lakes, canals and rivers in lowland areas. In winter, some individuals move to estuaries and the coast. Occasionally they may visit garden ponds if of a suitable size. They can be seen all year round. Cromwell Bottom is an ideal location for theses birds with a unique comnbination of the River Calder, Canals and Lagoons

General Facts

Kingfishers are  vulnerable to hard winters and habitat degradation through pollution or unsympathetic management of watercourses. Kingfishers are amber listed because of their unfavourable conservation status in Europe. It is estimated there are 3,800-4,600 breeding pairs in the UK

This image catches the Kingfisher just as it expresses in the  afternoon during its preening ritual
 the white liquid faeces is forcably ejeted in a dramatic fashion seen ejected just behind this bird

Kingfisher 3011

Preening Ritual 

Kingfisher 3091

Kingfisher 3094

Kingfisher 3068

Like all small birds the Kingfisher remains wary of  overhead activity to avoid presation by raptors

Kingfisher 3016

Kingfisher 3017


The common kingfisher hunts from a perch 1–2 m (3.3–6.6 ft) above the water, on a branch, post or riverbank, bill pointing down as it searches for prey. It bobs its head when food is detected to gauge the distance, and plunges steeply down to seize its prey usually no deeper than 25 cm (9.8 in) below the surface

Kingfisher 3021


Like all kingfishers, the common kingfisher is highly territorial; since it must eat around 60% of its body weight each day, it is essential to have control of a suitable stretch of river. It is solitary for most of the year, roosting alone in heavy cover. If another kingfisher enters its territory, both birds display from perches, and fights may occur, where a bird will grab the other's beak and try to hold it under water. Pairs form in the autumn but each bird retains a separate territory, generally at least 1 km (0.62 mi) long, but up to 3.5 km (2.2 mi) and territories are not merged until the spring.

The courtship is initiated by the male chasing the female while calling continually, and later by ritual feeding, mating usually following.

More Videos On The Kingfisher

Thursday, 25 August 2016

The Missing Loop

The status of North Loop is not an Nature Reserve and could readily become another section of Lowfields Ind Estate it is therefore important that it is without delay it is  manged formally by agreement as a LNR. Other than contractual agreement with the Environemnt Agency to restore it to its original natural status the site in short a crudely capped entity with very little biodiversity . Whilst  many may think that the much appreciated and valued time they give to landscape it is for the betterment of conservation and the exsisting reserve whose status in any case expires relatively soon  should think carefully . It is clear that the council have shown no commitment to mentorring this site in this formal way as an LNR , . Furthermore it is becoming increasingly apparent that Countryside Services a service already paid for by the people of Calderdale are charging particularly children to engage in activities elsewhere in the borough. Many may not like the analysis but there has been no progress or comittment to advancing the status of this site , It is concerning that the Biodiversity Officer for Calderdale has not secured the future of  this site through the Local Development Plan 

Update - There has been some short term grace on the adjacent Brickwork site with a recent refusal on the n = 58 development which would have in my opinion impacted on the LNR and overall setting of the area Thank you to all our members and others who supported  FEET in bringing forward objection duly made 

Local Nature Reserve is a statutory designation made under Section 21 of the National Parks and Access to the Countryside Act 1949, and amended by Schedule 11 of the Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act 2006, by principal local authorities.

All district and county councils have powers to acquire, declare and manage LNRs. Parish and town councils can also declare LNRs but they must have the powers to do so delegated to them by the principal local authority. To qualify for LNR status, a site must be of importance for wildlife, geology, education or public enjoyment. Some are also nationally important Sites of Special Scientific Interest.

LNRs must be controlled by the local authority through ownership, lease or agreement with the owner. The main aim must be to care for the natural features which make the site special.

To establish a LNR the declaring local authority must first have a legal interest in the land concerned, for example, they could own it, lease it or have a nature reserve agreement with the owner. The land must lie within the area which the declaring authority controls.

LNRs are of local, but not necessarily national, importance. LNRs are almost always owned by local authorities, and they often pass the management of the LNR onto County Wildlife trusts. They also often have good public access and facilities. An LNR can also be an SSSI, or may have other designations (although an LNR cannot also be an NNR). There is no legal necessity to manage an LNR to any set standard but management agreements often exist.

An LNR can be given protection against damaging operations. It also has protection against development on and around it. This protection is usually given via the Local Plan, (produced by the planning authority), and often supplemented by local by-laws. Unlike national designations, the level and type of protection afforded an LNR is decided locally, and varies from site to site.

To find out more, including the process of designation, see the Natural England LNR website.

Sunday, 7 August 2016

Lucy's Lemurs

Brave Girl Lucy Ryan  Takes on great Challenge for conservation  Heres Lucy's story and how you can help her

Lucy's Fund Raising page


Lucy's Story

We say GOOD LUCK to LUCY on her trip

My name is Lucy Ryan, at 11 I was diagnosed with a cerebral folate deficiency. A rare metabolic disorder which effects the muscles and nerves in the hands and feet. Symptoms include cramps and muscle and nerve pain. As a result I use a wheelchair or crutches and was unable to complete my GCSEs. However this has not changed my ambitions and has only made me more determined to succeed.

10 years on, I am currently completing a BSc in Wildlife Conservation at LJMU, with a 2nd year grade of 75%. I have gained experience in a range of ecological surveying and wildlife management techniques. With a particular interests primate and community based conservation.

In September i will embark on an 11 month scientific research expedition to Madagascar. This will allow me to gain vital and invaluable experience within my chosen field. Day to day activities will include Lemur conservation, Environmental education, reforestation, habitat protection and the replantation of native species.

I also have the opportunity to complete a scientific research project on the Endangered Collared Brown Lemur. Greatly dependent upon habitat quality, population densities of this species in the selected area are currently unknown. My project aims to not only identify these but to establish a long term monitoring program for the species. To fill the current gap in knowledge, with the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) identifying population trend data as a research priority for this species.

Originally intended as a work experience placement with uni, funding would have been greatly supported by SFE. However due to complications with university insurance, the placement was unable to go ahead. Now considered a gap year and separate from university the whole expedition must be self funded.

Donations go towards project equipment, forest permits, accommodation, living costs and flights. Please share my story, all donations are greatly appreciated (min £2).


Not What You Want - New Zealand Pygmyweed Crassula helmsii

New Zealand Pygmyweed Crassula helmsii AKA  Australian Swamp-Stonecrop

Found in the Lagoon with seeds remaing stertile the best way to remove this is by raking as it spreads vegetativly

This is an Invasive Plant  under  Schedule 9 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act in England and Wales therefore, it is also an offence to plant or otherwise cause to grow these species in the wild.

More here NZ Pigmyweed

NZ Pigmyweed    whats happening elsewhere Potteric






A few Day Flying Insects 6th August 2016


Pale Straw Pearl Udea lutealis




Common Blue Damselfly


Speckled Wood


Tuesday, 21 June 2016

The Hawk Moths

At Cromwell the Poplar Hawk Moth and the Lime Hawk Moth can be seen at this time of year

69.001 BF1979    Lime Hawk-moth Mimas tiliae




The less colourful Poplar Moth

69.003 BF1981
Poplar Hawk-moth Laothoe populi

1981 Poplar Hawkmoth 9210

69.016 BF1991 Elephant Hawk-moth Deilephila elpenor. 


Sunday, 12 June 2016

Cromwell Dayfinds Moths Today 12 June 16

A few things on the reserve today

72.002 BF2474 Straw Dot Rivula sericealis


White-barred Gold (Micropterix aruncella)


48.001 BF385 
Anthophila fabriciana


70.202 BF1881 Early Tooth-striped Trichopteryx carpinata Click on image To enhance

Found at Moth Point Lagoon 1


Saturday, 28 May 2016

Worthy Macro from Group Member

Here is a selection of Macro Shots from Glynne W (FEET CB Member) many of the creatures featured are found througout the reserve . his macro is worthy of comment for a number of reasons . not just the diffculty in getting close to the subject per se but the fact that Glynne is using an improvised manual lens system and shooting manually no autofocus with his own technique . All in all this work is giving a high end lens a run for its money and producing good results that are more than fit for purpose well done

Plecoptera - Stone Fly

Sawfly - Symphyta probably Selandria serva 

Chrysolina sp A leaf Beetle

Cuckoo Flower -  Key Food for the Orange Tips

Tephritis neesii or 

Lesser / Wood Stitchwort

Cantharis Soldier beetle

Nettle Weevil

Profile View of a Shield Bug Nymph likely P rufipes Forest Shieldbug 

Birds Foot Trefoil Larval Food for the Common Blue


Heather Groundling Imaged elsewhere35.017 BF797
Neofaculta ericetella

                                                    hope you like the mixed bag of images