Below are aggregated posts from various wildlife blogs created by people within the Forest of Bowland (bowlandwildlife.org.uk accept no responsibility for any content not created directly by bowlandwildlife.org.uk)

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July 6th, 2015

Backsbottom Farm

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Tree Trunks!

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July 4th, 2015

Backsbottom Farm

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Meadows in Roeburndale

It may sound obvious but 100 years ago Britain’s countryside was a very different place.
Back then it would have been awash with colourful flower-rich meadows and grasslands that were an intrinsic part of our agriculture and people’s daily lives.
The scale of the decline is breath-taking

Fast forward to today and over 97% of wildflower meadows have been lost since the 1930s, that’s a startling 7.5 million acres (3 million hectares). Species-rich grassland now only covers a mere 1% of the UK’s land area.
And what remains is mostly scattered fragments of just a few acres and vulnerable to disappearing under the plough. The seriousness and causes of the decline has been outlined in a report by the charity Plantlife.
According to the charity’s botanical specialist, Dr Trevor Dines, all that remain are just 26,000 acres (10,500 hectares) of lowland wildflower meadow and 2,223 acres (900 hectares) of upland hay meadow in the UK.
“The scale of the decline is breath-taking,” he says.
This loss of meadows and species-rich grasslands is without parallel in the history of nature conservation in the UK according to Save Our Magnificent Meadows, a partnership project led by the charity Plantlife to promote and protect our vanishing meadows.
They also say that in the UK, more priority species for conservation are associated with grasslands than with any other habitat type.
So to celebrate these now very rare and special spaces and to raise awareness of their striking decline, the first ever National Meadows Day is being held on Saturday 4 July.

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June 25th, 2015

Cobden Farm Bed and Breakfast

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Cobden Farm Bed and Breakfast 2015-06-25 21:55:00

Some people have only plants in their garden. Ours has a nest of eggs hiding under a bush. Thank you, cheeky hen. Perhaps she’ll hatch them.Cobden Farm B and B website

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June 22nd, 2015

Height Top Farm

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height top farm 2015-06-22 16:01:00

HEIGHT TOP FARM HOLIDAY COTTAGESKens little owl waiting patiently for his walk around our fields…………..and they’re off

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June 15th, 2015

Elizabeth Louise Mills

Macro moths

Barrie has got some extension tubes for his camera so he can take macro shots of our garden wildlife. We put the moth trap out Friday night and were really pleased to get some Elephant Hawkmoths, among many other moths.Elephant HawkmothBuff Ermine

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June 7th, 2015

Backsbottom Farm

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Hen Harriers

Desperate days as 5th male hen harrier ‘disappears’

A male hen harrier Another male hen harrier has ‘disappeared’ from an active nest – the 5th this year.
Three males vanished from nesting territories in Bowland in late April/early May (see here).
Another male vanished from its nesting territory on Geltsdale last week (see here).
And now the 5th – last seen on the United Utilities Estate in Bowland on 29th May (see here).
Is it shocking news? Yes, but not because we didn’t expect it. It’s shocking because the persecution of this species is so, so brazen.
It should now be clear (as if it hasn’t been for decades) that the people responsible, and the grouse-shooting industry that shields them, need to be brought to their knees.
We can all do that.
We must do that.
We will find a way to do that.
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June 4th, 2015

Elizabeth Louise Mills

Ebb and Flo

Our guests are soon going to be leaving us. In two weeks the change has been amazing we literally wake up to different ducks every day. They have got very bossy- they ran out of food in the pen (they eat a lot!) and they made sure we heard about it. Th…

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June 4th, 2015

Elizabeth Louise Mills

Bioblittz in the garden

Sort of bio blitzed our garden today ie walked around with a camera and photographed as many insects as I could. Not got round to identifying them all yet but amazed by the variety and how beautiful even the tiniest little fly can be. A patch of nettle…

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May 28th, 2015

Seaman

Comment on Wanted: Your thoughts on our new Skydancer film

Anything that draws attention to the plight of these fantastic birds,along with other raptors,must be welcomed with open arms.Our local club’s recording area covers a large part of the “Yorkshire black hole for raptors” and we worry every time we get …

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May 27th, 2015

Elizabeth Louise Mills

Growing up

Over the Bank holiday weekend Ebb and Flo’s adult plumage has come through, it started just below their wings and then on their shoulders and chests. Then spend ages in the pond ducking underwater – lots of down is floating on the surface. On the bank …

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May 21st, 2015

Backsbottom Farm

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Henry in Bowland 2

Courtesy of Mark Avery’s blog

Henry is pining for a ringtail. He’d heard that the Forest of Bowland was his best chance for a hot date.  ‘this one looks rather cute’ Henry told me. ‘I’m sure you’re right, Henry’, I said ‘They all look much the same to me’. Henry gave me a bit of a glare, I thought.
He came across these interesting figures in John Armitage’s blog which show that it is the United Utilities land where Hen Harriers have most often nested successfully in Bowland in the period 1981-2005 in this area. Two thirds of successful nests were on the UU land and the other third on the three sporting estates of Abbeystead, Bleasdale and Clapham.
Natural England’s excellent report (before they were muzzled, castrated and chained up), A Future for Hen Harriers in England? shows that Hen Harrier nesting success was far higher on one side of the Bowland fence, the United Utilities’ side of the fence, than it was on the other side, the grouse moor side. Isn’t nature remarkable? How can such big differences, 65 pairs raising an average of 1.96 chicks/breeding attempt on UU land, compared with a mere 18 breeding attempts, producing an average of 1.22 chicks/breeding attempt on the grouse moor side of the fence, have come to pass in the period 2002-2008?
I told Henry to be careful.
#HaveYouSeenHenry?

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May 19th, 2015

Elizabeth Louise Mills

Ducklings

Discovered how much ducklings like worms, they were fighting over them in the polytunnel. They also had a whale of a time in the pond, they are getting used to being herded into the carrier to be taken out, much harder to get them to go back in though.

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May 19th, 2015

Elizabeth Louise Mills

Learning to quack

This morning we put the ducklings in the new pen round the pond – they were so happy dabbling in the mud, diving under water and having a general good clean, flicking water over their backs and waggling their stubby little wings and tails. I also put t…

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May 19th, 2015

Backsbottom Farm

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Missing Hen Harriers on Forest of Bowland

Three male hen harriers disappeared form this area. The RSPB are offering a reward for information:http://www.birdwatch.co.uk/channel/newsitem.asp?c=11&cate=__15936

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May 18th, 2015

Elizabeth Louise Mills

Ducklings

We now have two ducklings living in the bathroom and are busy building a pen for them to go out into. This doesn’t seem to surprise anyone. On Wednesday evening I thought the drake seemed to be playing a little rough with the ducklings, when they dived…

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May 13th, 2015

Elizabeth Louise Mills

Ducks back and Lidl wildflowers

Pleased to say the duck returned with her ducklings the same evening, though sad to say she was down to two by the next day, we do wonder if she had got seperated from them during the bad weather and then buzzards or crows noticed them. Anyway they are…

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May 10th, 2015

Alison Kelsall

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Sightings from the bird hide

3 lapwing chicks and several adults, 2 kestrels, hares

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May 10th, 2015

Alison Kelsall

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Bird hide viewings

Lapwings 5 and curlew 1

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May 7th, 2015

Elizabeth Louise Mills

Missing Birds

Really sad today as our lovely duck turned up with no ducklings – to be honest we had been expecting it from past experience but had hoped it least one would make it. Doubly sad as on breakfast news this morning it said that three male hen harriers had…

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May 6th, 2015

Alison Kelsall

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Bird hide sightings

Lapwings 30+, curlew 4, rooks 20, swallow, kestrel, partridge, hares, snipe, pheasant, geese (flying past) 20, pipits

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Dean Wood

A deep narrow wooded clough typical of those found on the West Pennine Moors. Dean Wood is an impressive site; this deep, narrow, wooded clough is typical of those found on the West Pennine Moors. has an unusually rich variety of flora for the West Pennines area perhaps because it has experienced relatively little disturbance for many decades. 69 species of bird have been recorded on site many of which are known to breed in the wood. Grid ref. (SD628152)

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