Looking down the ride in progress on the east side of Elliker Wood
Over the last three months a great effort has gone into creating new habitats in Elliker Wood. Rides have been cleared along the top, bottom and eastern sides, boundaries have been fenced, the old and decaying hedgeline along the eastern side has been laid and pedestrian and vehicular access gates have been installed.
The top ride; complete.
Laying the hedge.
The hedge, laid.
Pedestrian gate in progress.
We expect to commence work in Elliker Wood during October. The aim is to open up the wood to increase the variety of habitats and flora.
Elliker Wood, September 2015
At the moment inside the wood is very dark with the ground flora consisting almost solely of Dogs Mercury. Starting in the south western corner of the wood, the aim is to create short east-west rides at the top and bottom of the wood linked by a north-south ride along the eastern edge of the wood. We will also remove dead and dying trees, mainly elms, and some of the bushy undergrowth will be thinned. In order to do this a felling licence has been requested and approved.
Most of the work will be funded by a grant from Green Leeds and will be carried out by volunteers and our chain saw contractor. During the winter we will be holding two “Family Work Party” days, one on a Saturday and one on a Sunday, and hope that local people will take the opportunity to visit the reserve and help with some of the work. Keep an eye on the website’s Upcoming Events and the Newsletter for dates.
Following the preparations earlier in the year, those seeds that were the earliest to germinate are now in full flower…. Corncockle, Cornflower, Corn Marigold, and Poppy are now in full bloom. It is hoped that even more species will flower next year.
Ground preparation at Elliker entrance in April 2015
Elliker entrance…. The first flowers, September 2015
After delays in obtaining grants and installing the fencing, on Saturday 14th Feb 2015, twenty eight young and old attended the family work party to complete the fencing and hedging in Elliker field so that the field can finally be stocked with cows and sheep.
These animals will do their job of “conservation grazing” which is beneficial to many wild flowers, invertebrates and ground nesting birds by eating last year’s thick grassy sward.
Planting saplings in Elliker field
Dexter cows in Elliker field
The animals will stay on the reserve untill late March when the Spring flowers start to appear.
Enthusiasm was not in short supply…. Frank Shire’s field was similarly treated by the youngsters planting a new hedge along the north-eastern edge of this reserve.
Hedge planting in Frank Shire’s
A well earned rest!
Further information can be obtained at… http://www.grazinganimalsproject.org.uk/what_is_conservation_grazing.html
Local Volunteers joined together in Elliker Field to clear scrub and continue erecting the stock proof fencing in preparation for conservation grazing with Trust member’s rare breed Soay and Hebridean sheep.
The new hedge in the Elliker Field is well underway. Many thanks to those who helped in the rain on the 26th Jan.
Planning the work. all the saplings are bagged into separate species and ready for dividing into lots for planting.
Sue and David from Green Leeds (who funded the hedging project) visitind the Friday Work Party volunteers to see how the project was progressing.
It’s all hands to the deck for the Friday workparty…. dig the hole, plant the tree, insert the cane and fit the spiral guard.
The weather was not so kind two days later during the Winter Work Party on Sunday 26th January.
We are pleased to report that the purchase of Elliker Wood was completed a few days ago. We hope to improve the various habitats to make a haven for wildlife and an inviting place for visitors.
15th September 2013. We invited the local community to come and see the latest plans for Elliker Field and add their comments. Many joined the day’s workparty. Young and old helped to sow seeds and identify wild flowers while the more active helped to clear brash from our initial scrub clearance.
The event was aided by funding from Green Leeds.
Back in August, the local magazine “Wetherby Matters” featured a two-page article about the East Keswick Wildlife Trust.
The two pages are included below.
To see the latest issue of the Wetherby Matters magazine, go to http://emagazines.hibu.com/wetherby.
Corrections to details re- Frank Shire’s Quarry above: “magnesium limestone” should read “magnesian limestone”, “Broomrape thistle” should read “Thistle Broomrape”.
Elliker Fields Community Work Party
Thank you for your support so far.
Management work has now begun.
Please join our work party or just come and have look at the plans.
Sunday 15th September 11am to 3pm
All ages are welcome
Wear sturdy footwear or wellies and bring gardening gloves and loppers if you have them.