AGM and talk about Wildlife near Farnham, Thursday 25th Oct 2018

Join us for our brief AGM at 7pm followed by a talk entitled ‘Surrey Safari –garden birds and local wildlife near Farnham.  Our entertaining speaker Geoff Lunn will begin with photographs of birds and other wildlife taken in the garden then move to the countryside near Farnham for the more wary animals and birds.  Non-members are welcome and drinks and nibbles will be available during the evening.

There will also be a display showing some of the flora and fauna seen in Froyle and a pictorial review of this year’s events.  The talk will start at 7.30pm and doors open at Froyle Village Hall from 6:30pm, entrance fee £2 members, £3 non members.

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Wasp spider in Froyle August 2018

A Froyle resident spotted an unusual spider this summer while out walking and sent us some photos. Forbes said:-

“Living in Westburn Fields I regularly walk my dog Stanley around the Froyle Recreational Ground and especially enjoyed the wildflower area during the summer.  This summer I was fortunate to spot a wasp spider on the poppy stems.  With striking yellow and black markings and an impressive spiral orb web, the wasp spider makes for an impressive sight and I was pleased that the photos came out.  It was mid August with the early morning dew really showing off the spiral orb web.”

Forbes also included some photos of the cornfield annuals with poppies in full bloom at the beginning of July.

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Walk at Magdalen Hill Down 1st August 2018

Join us on Wednesday 1st August 2018 for a walk at Magdalen Hill Down near Winchester. Enjoy a leisurely amble (about 1 mile) over chalk downland that is managed by Butterfly Conservation.  We anticipate seeing wildflowers and butterflies including the Chalk Hill Blue which breed on Horseshoe Vetch.  Some of the paths are steep and uneven in a few places so sturdy footwear is recommended and close focus binoculars are handy. Meet 2pm at the small gravel car park on B3404 (Arlesford Road) SU511294.

Update after the walk: Guided by reserves manager Jayne Chapman we had lovely views from the steep, south-facing hillside. Ten species of butterfly were seen including Chalkhill Blue and Small Heath as well as 3 day flying moth species, a Wasp Spider and wonderful wildflowers such as Clustered Bellflower, Harebell, Common Rockrose, Horseshoe Vetch and Kidney Vetch.  Two species of Robberfly were photographed, the Downland Robberfly (a rare species) being new to the reserve.

Hornet Robberfly
Downland Robberfly has caught a Common Blue
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Pond dipping Froyle 26th August 2018

Update 25th August CANCELLED: The weather has beaten us again with a forecast of heavy rain.

Family fun –join us for a 1h dipping session on Sunday 26th August (postponned from 29th July) to see what underwater creatures we can find in the wildlife pond near Gid Lane, Froyle (see plan). Children will need to be accompanied by a responsible adult.  All equipment will be provided and numbers are limited so it is essential to book by emailing info@froylewildlife.co.uk, stating preference for 2pm or 3pm session.

Dragonflies have thrived in the new habitat as well as pond skaters, water boatmen and whirligig beetles. Advice from wildlife pond experts is to let the pond colonise naturally over time. So please do not introduce any fish, aquatic species or pond plants because this could bring in diseases or potentially invasive non-native species.

The wildflower meadow surrounding the pond will be in flower attracting butterflies and other insects. Explore the paths to see what you can spot.

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Wildflowers, butterflies and dragonflies thrive in Froyle, July 2018

One of our members, Simon sent us photos about his afternoon in Froyle, he wrote …

Visiting the wildflower area on Froyle Recreation Ground this Friday revealed a wealth of diverse wildlife. The meadow had a lovely mix of Common Poppies, Corn Flowers, Oxeye Daisies, and Corn Marigolds amongst others. Can you also see the Meadow Brown hiding in the wildflowers meadow picture. The Common Poppies are in various stages of development, from just appearing out of their buds as they un-crease and unfold, to losing their petals for bees to collect the remaining nectar, whilst others have lost all their petals with a 7-spot lady bird and soldier beetle racing to the top. Finally a Gatekeeper and hoverfly gathering nectar from Corn Marigold.

   

   

I then decided to visit the wildlife pond near Gid Lane, Froyle which was teeming with life. There was an abundance of Blue-tailed Damselflies around, as well as Emperor Dragonflies laying eggs in the pond. There was a Meadow Brown butterfly resting on a Knapweed, as well as a freshly emerged Common Blue butterfly on a spent Ox-eye Daisy. You can see many wild flowers in various stages of development, shown here with a dead and new Ox-eye Daisy side by side. There was also a pretty pink and white wildflower -Wild Carrot (usually white flowered). As I then rested on the wooden stump watching the Damselflies and Dragonflies, there was a crack of thunder, followed by a rapidly increasing downpour. That was my time to leave!

   

 

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‘Drop-in’ at wildlife pond, Froyle 1st July 2018

On Sunday 1st July 10-12am & 2-4pm call in to visit the wildlife pond and meadow, near Gid Lane, Froyle. There will be plenty to see especially if it’s a sunny day, so do come along and see what’s flying and flowering.  Members of Froyle Wildlife will be on hand to assist with identification of dragonflies, butterflies and wildflowers. Species to look out for include; knapweed, lady’s bedstraw, rough hawkbit, self heal, purple loosestrife, water figwort, bird’s-foot trefoil, emperor dragonfly, four-spotted chaser, azure damselfly, meadow brown.

Last year we recorded 22 butterfly species, 13 dragonfly species and over 80 flowering plants at ‘Froyle Park Pond’, see species list 2017.

The pond area is open at all times to members of Froyle Wildlife and can also be seen from the adjacent public footpath. This project was funded by developer contributions through East Hampshire District Council and completed with the kind permission of Froyle Park Ltd.

Conditions of our access licence include visitors using only the stile for entry/exit (see plan) and no fires, BBQs or picnics. Advice from wildlife pond experts is to let the pond colonise naturally over time. So please do not introduce any fish, aquatic species or pond plants because this could bring in diseases or potentially invasive non-native species.

 

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Heathland walk at Broxhead Common 27th July 2018

Join us on Wednesday 27th July 2018 for a walk at Broxhead Common. Enjoy a leisurely stroll (about 1 mile) over this SSSI heathland to see Silver-studded Blue butterflies which breed on the heather. Specific to heathland habitat this rare butterfly is small so close focus binoculars are handy. Meet 2pm at the layby on B3004 (Broxhead Farm Road) SU803373. Parking is limited so share lifts from Froyle Village Hall leaving at 1.40pm if you wish. The weather forecast is sunny 25C, so you may need hat, sunscreen and water.

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Wild Orchids of Hampshire talk 15th May 2018

Bee Orchid

On Tuesday 15th May 7.30pm, we welcome Rosemary Webb -wild orchid expert and top photographer as our speaker. We’ll find out about some of the 30+ species of orchid found in Hampshire over a variety of habitats that include chalk grassland, heathland, marshland and woodland.  Come along and be enthused to seek out some of these beauties for yourself.

All welcome, teas and coffees, entrance £2 members of Froyle Wildlife, £3 non members. Doors open 7pm for talk to start at 7.30pm.

White Helleborine Froyle

Several orchid species including white helleborine and bee orchid have been recorded in Froyle, along with other wild flowers (see list of species).

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Hampshire’s Amphibians and Reptiles talk 19th April 2018

Do join us for a talk about ‘Hampshire’s Amphibians and Reptiles’ by John Buckley at Froyle Village Hall on Thursday 19th April 7.30pm. John is a dedicated conservationist of our native amphibians and reptiles. Find out how to identify our frogs, toads, newts, snakes and lizards and the importance of suitable habitats.

All welcome, teas and coffees, entrance £2 members of Froyle Wildlife, £3 non members. Doors open 7pm for talk to start at 7.30pm.

A familiar visitor to Froyle, John advised us about the design of the wildlife pond near Gid Lane. Previously he also led our small mammal identification walk near Mill Farm, Isington. John is collating records for an Atlas on the distribution of Hampshire’s amphibians and reptiles which is due for publication in 2 years time.  John would really like us to help by sending in records of all species from those seen in our own gardens to those we encounter whilst out and about. Every record counts from the lone frog to a pond full!

There are free identification guides from ARC that can be downloaded as .pdfs for amphibians and reptiles. John co-authored ‘Amphibian Habitat Management Handbook‘ that can also be downloaded as a .pdf.

A handy form with instructions on how to record your sightings is here.

Note after the talk: We were encouraged to record sightings of these creatures (in our gardens or elsewhere in Hampshire) on ‘Living Record’. Alternatively records can be sent to Hampshire Wildlife Trust, thereby contributing towards an Atlas of Hampshire’s amphibians and reptiles to be published in 2020.  Data collected from such surveys inform conservationists which species are doing well and which are in decline and prompt further investigations.

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