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

Saturday, 20 February 2016

Winter Bloomer

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The first yellow flowers of Spring where seen today the Marsh Marigold Caltha palustre is flowering on the damp areas of the reserve despite the grey overcast day

Recording the Lichens  Mosses and Liverworts continues

Oak Moss (Evernia prunastri)


Capilary Thread Moss Bryum capilare




Common Jellyspot - Dacrymyces stillatus TBC  A fungi was also found on decaying wood


An pale green algae was also identified on the Rail Embankment

On the subject of Lichens which are a shared organism consisting of an Alge and Fungi two external parasitic - Lichenicolous fungus have been identified

1. Evernia prunastri and the parasitic fungi  Unguiculariopsis lettaui.
2. Physcia tenella  and the parasitic fungi  Illosporiopsis christiansenii

Thursday, 18 February 2016

Life in the Hedgerow

*****Please contribute to the future of the reserve send any records or sitings to with date or location and help protect the future of the reserve  ****

Another Round this afternoon in the very Crisp Blue Sunshine ended in a cold grey down pour. Nevertheless Cromwell Bottom consistingly provides records for all seasons and provided a contrast to the mirky scene of the spaghnum bog damged by flood - the fly ash particles seen settling out as a milky water and sludge quicksand

This afternoon provided more Bryophyte - Simple Plant Records as well as a liverworts were made

Bristle-moss Orthotrichum sp possibly affine on bridge walling  

Noted in the  moss at about 2-3 mm was red mites possibly Trombola species 

This young Robin again came to the hand but the foot  he had noticed that whislt photographing the Mosses a large earth worm had become dislodged and fair game he came without hesitation to the end of the green wellies picked up tea and progressed to the branch to onlook and dine . Robins clearly notice how humans dislodge or disrupt food in the environment are quick to capitilise on this 

Sited on the Water Ski Lake was two Cormorants unfortunately captured with the wrong lens but as always with the work of the FEET an evidential record is always made .

The evening now is also punctuated with the distinct calls of thrush whose distinct memory of vocal patterns make each one distinct and recognisable like a voice

Saturday, 13 February 2016

On The Record .....

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Last Years Records 2015

The purpose of this afternon Round Robin was to record generally Bryophytes and Lichens which are particularly evident at this time of year however such work was not overlooked by this curious Robin who eventually perched on my hand to pick up some seed which was still in my pocket from our off site feeding programmes

Springy Turf Moss Rhytidiadelphus squarrosus 

This Image shows a piece of Springy Turf Moss Rhytidiadelphus squarrosus  which is a fairly common moss

This shot shows a Brittle Moss Ulota  likely Ulota crispa

Rough-stalked Feather-moss Brachythecium rutabulum

Didymodon Beard Moss TBC

More To Be Added

Much of the Birch is covered by a Plentiful supply of Xanthora parieta - A Yellow Lichen a number of Tits also appeared to to hedging their bets in the brief window of afternoon light albeit a few minutes of sun. Its not uncommon this time of year to see our small birds hunt for minute insects or caterpillars which are not apparent to the casual rambler at ground level

These British Soldier or Matchstick  Lichens are common this time of year and as the name suggests looks as described likely Cladonia floerkeana

This Leaf Mine is actually a minute caterpillar of one of the Stigmella moths eating this Bramble Leaf

This Grey inconspicuous Lichen was seen growing on the bark of willow most likely
Lecidella sp - Lecidella elaeochroma

Stands of Broom and Harts Tongue Fern still remain throughout the areas along River and near Carr edges

Another objective of the Round  was to measure and evaluate the damage to the spaghnum and adjacent woodland, When the fly ash areas where remediated there was supposed to be a top layer of 300 mm sub soil which is now not evident at all , however , natures arrangement of Birch and Willow in these Carrs have somewhat contributed to the stability and leaf layer arising in a different array of flora and fauna - however you do not need look too far to find evidence of the substantial ammounts of Fly Ash which was deposited in the Nature Reserve after the closure of the Elland Power Station. There is nothing at all that establishes in this layer of Ash and it remains as it was form the day it was burnt . A lot of this recently surfaced ash will blow off when it becomes sun scorched as it is a very fine light ash

Initial assessment shows significant impact by the flood storm damage with the shallow root basis of many birch and other trees being undermined by the water damage This tide Mark of Fly Ash was at least 7 ft above base level of the bund at Lagoon 2 .as seen on Image below  The evidence of water ingress as a back flow at this junction of the River can be seen from the direction of trees disrupted from East to West which implies a substantial ingress and back flow from the Calder at the time of Peak Storm and it is interesting to note that ingress was through fly ash layers and the ground layer through weak channels which are evident
Such quick sand channels are dangerous and should be avoided . The area of spaghnum is substantially covered in sediment which will likely agregate when the significant water mass in there at the moment subsides, The extent to which this redistribution of top layers will impact on some of the rarer Bryophytes and Lichens is concerning but it remains to see how this area recovers from the disruption but such areas are key feeding ground for the like of Willow Warbler who should be feeding from early Hoverflies and other insects early in the season. The effect on colonies of solitary bees will also be significant it is difficult to quantify this imapct but our records should be able to detect anual decline in some of these groups as a consequence of flood . The Reed Bed in Lagoon 2 seems to be substantially intact and monitorring of Reed Moths such as the Wainscotts should hopefully show no decline as a consequence of the flood event . A more detailed ecological assessment is available to FEET members