Wildlife Field Visits - Current Programme

BEES hosts a Wildlife Field Visit Programme throughout the year. The programme aims to explore a range of habitats to study their natural history and management issues relating to their upkeep. The programme is organised and delivered by a committed and knowledgeable group of volunteers. Planning meetings are held regularly to agree and distribute the programme.

Please see details for up and coming visits below.
Bookings must be made in advance (please ring BEES office for details).
Where minibus transport is offered there is a charge which varies from £5 - £12 depending on the distance of the trip.

The Minibus Bus departs at 9.30am from the Unitarian Church, Russell Sreet, BD5 0JB (unless indicated otherwise).
If you are on foot you can meet the minibus Culture Fusion (125 Thornton Road, Bradford BD1 2EP and corner of Westholme Street) no later than 9.10am.

On occassion the minibus will pick up passengers on route out of Bradford. Please discuss with the office (or driver) to find out the pick up points.

* Please ensure you bring adequate food and drink for the day.
* Wear strong footwear and waterproof clothing.
* All trips must be booked and paid for in advance where applicable.
* We ask for a donation of £2 if you chose to use your own transport when the minibus is offered.
* All people irrespective of background and experience are welcome
* Parking is available for a limited number of cars at the Unitarian Centre, Russell Street. PLease make a donation of £2 for this facility.

BEES is a district wide environmental education and training centre funded both by Bradford Council and our own project work – for further information please contact Julia Pearson.

Hardcastle Crags

Tuesday 1st May, 2018

Our destination today is the Hardcastle Crags estate, which encompasses a wide variety of terrain with oak, beech and pine woods and some of the best examples of upland meadows in the country.  Once parked we shall walk to Gibson Mill (toilets available) and then take some of the many footpaths through the site to hopefully see bluebells in all their spring glory.  Spring migrants will have returned so there should be opportunity for our birders to watch the unfolding frenzy of the nesting season.  Walking distance will be in the region of 2 - 3 miles, perhaps on some uneven surfaces, with the possibility of mud, depending on conditions.

Leader: Sally Tetlow and Steve Casling
Minibus transport; depart Unitarian Church 9.30am. Cost £7.


High Batts

Tuesday 8th May, 2018
north of Ripon

This is a private reserve set up in 1973 located on the west bank of the River Ure and within the Norton Conyers Estate. Since 1983 it has formed the northern section of the Ripon parks SSSI. Essentially it is a woodland habitat with ponds. It has an impressive bird list and the flora is abundant and diverse; perhaps we may see the Common Star of Bethlehem. Moth trapping has recorded over 400 species. Five species of Amphibia and a wide range of mammals are on record including the occasional sighting of otters. We will be guided around this new site by the site chairman. A donation would be appreciated. 

Leader: Steve Casling and Sally Tetlow
Minibus transport; depart Unitarian Church 9.30am. Cost £9.


Threshfield Quarries

Tuesday 15th May, 2018
near Grassington

Our walk is a circular walk of approx. 3.5 - 4 miles, down country lanes, past woodland, across grassland and following a short uphill climb emerging at Thresfield Quarry. The Millennium Trust has restored the rail line used in the past by the Quarry also a lime kiln. The flora will be varied spring flora including early purple orchids. Toilets are situated at the Yorkshire Dales Information centre in Grassington.

Leaders: Margaret Rees and Madeleine Massey
Minibus transport; depart Unitarian Church 9.30am.  Cost: £8

Pick-ups along The Branch - Keighley route 


Malham Tarn Boardwalk

Tuesday 22nd May, 2018
Yorkshire Dales National Park

This lies on the north bank of the tarn. Though we have visited the tarn numerous times for various reasons, we have never made it to the lengthy splendid boardwalk. Parking will be on the road behind the Estate buildings.

The habitat is a mixture of calcareous fen & raised acid-bog therefore supporting a rich array of wetland plants incl Birds-eye primrose, Globe Flower & Marsh Cinquefoil.  Birdlife too is well represented, with several species of warbler, Tree Pipits & Spotted Flycatchers. Green Hairstreak butterflies may also be seen at this time.  If time allows we will look for Yellow Wagtails (nowadays a scarce bird) around Lower Trenhouse Farm. Toilet stops will be at the NT car park In Malham village. 

Leaders: John Gavaghan and Alice Gingell
Minibus transport; depart Unitarian Church 9.30am.  Cost:£8

Pick-ups along The Branch - Keighley route 


Cross Hill & Salthill Quarries, Clitheroe

Tuesday 29th May, 2018

Today we visit the limestone quarries of Cross Hill and Salthill, situated on the northern edge of Clitheroe in the Ribble Valley.  An industrial site now, thanks to work by the Lancashire Wildlife Trust, reclaimed by nature.  Part of the Cross Hill site runs alongside the River Ribble and in the main quarry area are plants which thrive in lime-rich, shallow soil; we could see cowslips, sanicle, burnet saxifrage as well as, in damper areas, moschatel. There is also a small woodland area.  The Salthill reserve is also rich in lime-loving wildflowers.  The circular walk will take us through flower-rich grassland, scrub and ash woodland.  A sunny day should see plenty of butterfly activity.  Walking distance will be approximately 3 miles on designated pathways. Toilets will be accessed en route.

Leaders: Sally Tetlow and Alice Gingell
Minibus transport; depart Unitarian Church 9.30am; Cost: £8 

Pick-ups along The Branch - Keighley route 


Scar Close, Ingleborough limestone pavement, National Nature Reserve

Tuesday 5th June, 2018

Scar Close is a botanically rich limestone pavement (fenced to prevent sheep grazing), part of the Ingleborough National Nature Reserve and managed by Natural England. We can hope to see lily of the valley, spring cinquefoil and bloody cranesbill. We will park near the Hill Inn and walk less than a mile, including a stile. This pavement can be treacherous so participants will have to be extremely careful while botanising, and the use of a pole will be advised to give support. If it is raining we will have to change our plans as it will not be safe. 

Leaders:  Julia Pearson and Alice Gingell
Minibus transport; depart Unitarian Church 9.30am.  Cost: £10

Pick-ups along The Branch - Keighley route 


Troller's Ghyll & Tibet Wood

Tuesday 12th June, 2018
near Appletreewick

We will start by visiting Tibet Wood, a small area of hilly woodland, very close to Parcevall Hall. The sole reason for visiting this wood is to see a rare local plant 'Chickweed Wintergreen', neither a chickweed nor a wintergreen!   Access to this wood is by a stile. We will then proceed to Troller's Ghyll which is an area of limestone with much botanical interest. When we last went in 2016 we had sightings of various warblers & a Green Woodpecker. 

Leaders: John Gavaghan
Minibus transport; depart Unitarian Church 9.30am.  Cost: £8

Pick-ups as far as The Branch only 


Waitby Greenriggs and Little Asby Outrakes – Cumbria extended day

Tuesday 19th June, 2018

We will first visit Little Asby which is just west of Kirby Stephen, NY699 101. This is a small area of rough grazing notable for colonies of Small White Orchids, Heath Fragrant Orchids & several other orchid species. The terrain is rough cattle grazed pasture so be careful where you put your feet.

After lunch we go to the nearby Waitby reserve (owned by Cumbria WLT). It occupies a disused railway line so it is linear.  A delight for the botanists as there are numerous orchid species incl Frog, Fly & Lesser Butterfly. The lowest of the site's paths can be waterlogged so bring appropriate footwear. There are steps connecting the separate paths.  There is a possibility of seeing Red Squirrels in the adjacent woodland.  Toilet stops will be en route.  We will stop for fish & chips in Settle on our way home.

Leaders; John Gavaghan and Julia Pearson
Minibus transport; depart Unitarian Church 9.30am.  Cost £12

Pick-ups along The Branch - Keighley route 


Bingley South and North Bogs

Tuesday 26th June, 2018
Parking will be on John Escritt Road.

Today we will be using public transport and sharing cars. Parking will be on John Escritt Road. 

Bingley South Bog is a SSSI and abounds with plant and animal life. BEES has never visited either of these sites. The South Bog is an alkaline fen mire with a mosaic of damp grassland and wetland communities. The regionally rare Marsh Cinquefoil grows here with Marestail and Arrow grass. Orchids may be found. The North Bog is fed from an acid stream running off the hillside, and we would hope to see Lesser Pond-sedge, Ragged-robin and Water Figwort. 

Leaders;  Joan Dobson and Lorna Leeming   No Minibus transport; £2


Planning Meeting

Tuesday 7th August, 2018
YMCA, 125 Thornton Road

Planning Meeting 10 am, at YMCA Thornton Road.   

The meeting begins at 10am and will last until early afternoon. You may wish to bring lunch with you. The kettle will be to hand.