Previous Visits

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.

The list below shows information about past visits. For reports and photos about these visits please visit:
* Blog
* Photos

Otley Chevin - Butterflies, moths and flowers

Tuesday 16th August, 2016

Our visit to Otley Chevin will start from the Surprise View car park. The Chevin has many diverse habitats including woodland, heathland and meadow. Our plan would be to visit three areas of meadow that have been created by the addition of native wildflowers and seed to encourage the butterfly population. A warm day will be required. We hope to see species such as Meadow Brown, Small Copper and Common Blue which feed on Thistle, Common Sorrel and Birds foot trefoil respectively. Much of the Chevin is covered with Bilberry the food plant of the Green Hairstreak butterfly which is on the wing earlier in the year. Please be aware the tracks are rough and stony and there are some steep slopes. Protection in the form of a sun hat and sun screen will be needed on a sunny day. Distance covered will be less than 2 miles.

Leaders: Margaret Rees, Alice Gingell
Minibus transport; depart Unitarian Church 9.30am.  Cost £7


Shipley Glen & Trench Meadows

Tuesday 9th August, 2016

We will make our way up the path beside the Shipley Glen Tramway, to the Glen where there is a café with toilets. (Unfortunately Tuesday is maintenance day, and the tramway is not able to open for us).  We can look around the garden of the Bracken Hall Countryside Centre, ( the centre itself will probably not be open).  After which we will make our way down through the Glen to Trench Meadows which is an SSSI. Although too late for the orchids there are a number of interesting grasses to be seen.  We will then return to the minibus via the riverside to Roberts Park, where there should be another café and toilets. Parking is in the car park next to Salts’ School near the bottom of the tramway. Walk 2 to 3 miles.

Leader: Vera Clark
Minibus transport; depart Unitarian Church 9.30am.  Cost £5


Planning Meeting

Tuesday 2nd August, 2016
Culture Fusion, 125 Thornton Road BD1 2EP

Planning Meeting 10a.m, at YMCA Thornton Road.  

All welcome. 

Southerscales NR & Ribblehead Quarry

Tuesday 26th July, 2016

Our visit today is to the limestone pavement of the Southerscales Yorkshire Wildlife Trust Reserve, part of the Ingleborough NNR.  We will park at The Old Hill Inn on the B6255.  We have less than 100m of gradual climb to the limestone pavement and the walk is about 2 miles in total on relatively good paths. Once on the plateau the terrain is flat, but obviously very uneven with a need for extreme care to be taken as we explore the pavement flora. We will look for an array of limestone pavement specialities, and hope to find Dark Red Helleborine. We can hope for great views of the hills and valleys if the weather is on our side. There is no real shelter so dress with this in mind. In lieu of a parking fee we will have a drink at the Hill Inn before making our way to Ribblehead Quarry. Again it will be short easy walking and we hope to see Marsh Helleborine.

Leader: Julia Pearson
Minibus transport, depart, Unitarian Church 9.30am.  Cost £8


Extended day out to Foulshaw Moss & Meathop Moss, South Cumbria

Tuesday 19th July, 2016

Tuesday 19th July

Today we are visiting two Cumbria Wildlife Trust sites near the tip of Morecambe Bay. For the past few years Ospreys have nested at Foulshaw Moss, which will be our first stopping point (grid ref SD 458 837).We hope to get views of the chicks in the nest from the viewing platform ,this is several 100m from the nest so telescopes will be needed. You can watch the nest on a live webcam for a sneak (and close-up) preview – search for Foulshaw Ospreys on the internet.  

In recent years CWT have been working to restore the wetland habitat by removing conifers and increasing water levels. There has been a gradual improvement in the abundance of bog vegetation and associated insects. We will be led by the CWT warden on a short, flat walk around the boardwalks.  

We will also visit nearby Meathop Moss where we should see similar species. Again the walking will be flat and short. There are no toilet facilities at the reserves but we will stop at Kirkby Lonsdale on the way and call for a chip supper at either Settle or Skipton on the way home.

Leaders: Julia Pearson, Margaret Rees and Madeleine Massey (meal)
Minibus transport; depart Unitarian Church 9.30am.  Cost £11


Cromwell Bottom, Calderdale

Tuesday 12th July, 2016

This reserve is bounded by the River Calder & the Calder & Hebble Canal & is on reclaimed industrial land. We will be guided around sensitive parts of the reserve not normally accessible to members of the public. Special plants we hope to see are the rare Yellow Birdsnest & Round-leaved Wintergreen. The site is very good for dragonflies & has a good variety of birds, particularly warblers. Toilet facilities are a few minutes away from the Angler's Car park.

Leader: John Gavaghan   Advisor: Hugh Firman
Minibus transport; depart Unitarian Church 9.30am.  Cost £7

Slaidburn & Stocks Reservoir

Tuesday 5th July, 2016

We will be on the edge of the Forest of Bowland for today’s visit. We will park in the car park in Slaidburn (Grid Ref SD 7136 5235) where we can use the toilets before setting off on a two mile circular walk of the Bell Sykes Hay Meadows. We will be accompanied by the Bowland Hay Time Project officer. We start off alongside the river before crossing into the meadow area where we expect to see a fine display of wildflowers.  The walk takes us up hill, a steady climb on good paths, to Bell Sykes farm, where we eat our lunch. Tea and cake may possibly be available for a donation.

Above the farm are open fields, before the descent through areas that have been regenerated as hay meadows as part of the Coronation Meadows Project. There is a short section of path that we can expect to be wet whatever the weather. There are a couple of ladder stiles and the final descent is relatively steep and uneven, but not long so can be taken slowly.   

Once we have completed this walk we will drive a short distance to Stocks Reservoir. We plan to visit the churchyard which is managed for wildflowers, and walk along the banks of the reservoir.          

Leaders: Julia Pearson, Joan Dobson
Minibus transport; depart Unitarian Church 9.30am.  Cost £10


Wharram Percy & Wharram Quarry

Tuesday 28th June, 2016

The medieval deserted village of Wharram Percy is on the western edge of the Yorkshire Wolds. (car park Grid Ref.SE 867645). The walk is no longer than 3 miles but has a quite steep section and can be muddy. Farm livestock is likely to be on the path. Stout footwear is essential and, as the area is exposed, be prepared for any kind of weather.

Wharram Quarry is a Yorkshire Wildlife Trust species rich grassland site. We may find three types of orchid, thistle broomrape, restharrow and if very lucky, the endangered red hemp-nettle. On a sunny day butterflies abound: buzzards, linnets and yellow hammers may also be flying. Toilet stop on route.

Leaders: Alice Gingell, Joan Dobson
Minibus transport; depart Unitarian Church 9.30am.  Cost: £10


Langcliffe & Stainforth

Tuesday 21st June, 2016

Our destination is the picturesque village of Langcliffe (grid ref.SD823651) which is a few miles north of Settle. We will take a circular route with fairly level walking of about 3.5 to 4 miles in total. (There are some stiles along the route, but nothing too challenging). There will be plenty of interest; industrial architecture, botanical, avian, as well as butterflies & dragonflies. From Langcliffe we will take field paths and tracks towards Stainforth. It is on this section of the walk that we will see remains of Lime Kilns and infrastructure including the famous Hoffman Lime Kiln. Also here is the large quarry under Stainforth Scar, where the peregrines nest (binoculars needed). Toilets are available in Stainforth. Our return route takes us past Stainforth Force and along the river on the Ribble Way, where the path may be muddy in places.

Leader: Julia Pearson
Minibus transport; depart Unitarian Church 9.30am.  Cost £8



Tuesday 14th June, 2016
Allerton Bywater

Today we will be continuing our exploration of the S.E. Leeds sites which are owned by Leeds City Council and managed in partnership with Yorkshire Wildlife Trust. Letchmire Pastures at Allerton Bywater (WF10 2BW) is a 13 hectare site on low lying land near the River Aire, which was a former coal-stocking area. It consists of ponds, wet grassland, grassland scrub and hedgerows. The site is good for bird-watching; Lapwing, Common Snipe and Ringed Plover nest here and many other birds can be seen. The site was originally landscaped by Leeds City Council and the soil which was translocated contained rare plant species such as Grass Vetchling, Wood Small-reed and serval Orchid species. (Map ref. SE424274)

We will access toilets at Kippax Leisure Centre before the walk. 

Leader: John Gavaghan
Minibus transport; depart Unitarian Church 9.30am.  Cost £7