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Coombes Valley

Coombes Valley
Do you love our Coombes Valley nature reserve? Share your thoughts with the community. Or if you're thinking about visiting and would like to find out more, ask away!
Results for woodland
  • Blog Post: Barn Owl Family - 5-6 weeks old and growing

    I'm in the priveleged position of regularly reviewing the footage that we record from the barn owl nest box cameras. If, when you read that line, you thought 'what barn owls?', then have a look at our recent blog post here Barn Owl blog or our posts on our Facebook page Coombes...
  • Blog Post: Recent Sightings: from Kestrels to Grannies toenails!

    Last week we were graced with some weather that reminded us that it is in fact Summer, this made it a great time to view the huge variety of wild flowers around Coombes. The warmer weather also stirred some invertebrates into life that really emphasises the diversity of life that we have here in this...
  • Blog Post: The microscopic world of moss

    Visitors joining us on Saturday 9th March got the chance to take part in an informative guided walk on the subject of bryophytes . The word bryophytes is used as a collective term for mosses and liverworts that have no internal vessels. They extract all they need from the atmosphere, so generally...
  • Blog Post: Photography Competition Winner

    As you'll realise if you're a regular reader of our blogs, our nature reserve offers a chance to see a wide variety of wildlife. Many of our visitors do come here to look at birds, but the following guest blog shows that you just never know what's waiting to be discovered. The blog...
  • Blog Post: Recent Sightings: Flutterbies

    The warm and sunny weather over the bank holiday weekend was extremely welcome after a very wet week. This was the perfect time to get out and do our weekly butterfly transect as part of the UK butterfly monitoring scheme. The harsh winter has pushed back the emergence of butterflies all accross the...
  • Blog Post: Discover another world at Coombes Valley

    Common spotted orchids are visible in larger numbers than I've seen before. Look out for these charming blooms on your way to the Valley Viewpoint. If you hurry you can still catch our greater butterfly orchids before they go to seed. The best place to see orchids is below the Valley Viewpoint...
  • Blog Post: Recent sightings: buds and bark

    As this week is National Tree Week, let us take a closer look at some of our wonderful trees! Winter is almost upon us, and most of the trees are now bare, having lost their colourful assemblage of autumn leaves. Leaves are very distinctive characteristics of trees, and are thus one of the easiest...
  • Blog Post: Oh, Deer!

    I have been growing ever more curious about the occasional deer sightings on the reserve. We know that we have three species moving around and through Coombes and Churnet valleys, but it's very rarely that they're actually seen. The carpet of snow deposited in recent weeks gave me new insight...
  • Blog Post: Recent Sightings: The calm after the storm

    Yesterday we had to endure howling gales and torrential rain. Okay, maybe a bit of dramatic licence used there but it wasn't nice was it? Inspecting the damage it was clear that quite a few trees had fallen over or lost branches. But it’s not all bad news. Dead wood provides great habitat...
  • Blog Post: Sounds like winter

    I headed out to explore our snowy reserve on Friday (25th), a cold, crisp day. The cloud levels were gradually increasing, forewarning of the heavy snowfall that was forecast through the afternoon and evening. I was alone, it was blissfully quiet and I was able just to spend my time exploring with a...
  • Blog Post: 50 years on, Coombes Valley is still Stepping up for Nature

    Fifty years ago the RSPB stepped up for sparrowhawks by buying the home of the last remaining pair in the Midlands. The fortunes of sparrowhawks have taken a turn for the better and many of us can now enjoy the amazing speed, power and agility of these top predators from our kitchen windows. Hopefully...
  • Blog Post: Woodland management at Coombes Valley

    Woodland requires continued active management to retain the desired condition, and the species that depend on this environment. During the last 50 or so years, there has been a country-wide decline in many woodland species, such as the argent and sable moth and the pearl-bordered fritillary. This can...
  • Blog Post: Coombes Valley - the ALL NATURE story continues. Argent and Sable moth is flying high :+)

    Lots of news about the success of our 50th birthday coming up - but here's some hot off the press NATURE SUCCESS The photograph above isn't great - but then this moth (which flies during the daytime) can be hard to capture on camera. This one was taken at Coombes in 2010. While we've...
  • Blog Post: Discover the Butterflies of Coombes Valley

    Volunteer Adam Machin goes barmy over the prospect of our Beautiful Butterflies Walk, happening this Saturday, 14 July. One not to miss! You might not have guessed it, but this is the middle of our summer! This means our butterfly species should be peaking in numbers around about now. If you catch...
  • Blog Post: Celebrate at our 50th Anniversary Open Day

    Tomorrow, Saturday 9th June, you're invited to come and celebrate with us, in this our 50th anniversary year. We already know what a wonderful, inspiring place Coombes Valley Nature Reserve is, and we'd like you to come along and share in its magic at our Open Day. We have lots of brilliant...
  • Blog Post: 50 Shades of Autumn

    Sit at the valley viewpoint on a bright October day, and you will be blown away. Not by the fresh autumn breeze, but by the magnificent autumnal landscape stretching before your eyes. Autumn is a beautiful season, especially in woodlands. Particularly in this woodland, as the many viewpoints provide...
  • Blog Post: Fungal Foray!

    Our residential volunteer Audrey Duckworth tells about the wonderful variety of fungi species found on our Fungal Foray last Sunday! One of the highlights of autumn is the sight of the weird and wonderful fruit bodies of fungi in the woods and meadows. But it’s not all about mushrooms and...
  • Blog Post: Recent Sightings: Mosses and Muntjacs

    Despite the snow and chilly temperatures over the past week keeping most of our visitors at bay, there has been plenty to see as we move (slowly!) into Spring. There are still many fungal fruiting bodies hanging on through the cold though, in the forms of turkey tail and birch polypore, of which I have...
  • Blog Post: Recent sightings: Three of a kind!

    The amazing insight that we got into the lives of our barn owl family inspired me to see how I could find out what was happening deep in the night. Otters have been seen in recent years on the River Churnet so who knows what I might find?! To investigate, I have placed a small camera trap that is triggered...
  • Blog Post: Top 5 things to do this Autumn!

    Become a Nature Detective: Join us at Coombes Valley for one of our Scavenger hunt days from Sat 27th Oct to Sun 4th Nov 10am—4:30pm (£2 per child with a daily prize draw). Grow a Sapling from Seed: Collect seeds from under trees (such as acorns or conkers) simply place in a yoghurt pot...
  • Blog Post: Creatures of the Night - Date with Nature Evening Walks

    The Coombes team are bringing the night alive with our Creatures of the Night 'Date with Nature'. We're exploring what exactly is out and about on the reserve when most of us are heading for 8 hours of slumber. We have marvellous night flying moths, which we're bringing up close for...
  • Blog Post: Recent Sightings: Telltale Signs

    During the chilly Easter that we're experiencing, the dawn chorus that we've been delighted with has been relatively subdued. It's not only the lack of song that's been noticable; when the snow started falling and the winds picked up, a bird wasn't seen on the feeders for a good few...
  • Blog Post: Recent Sightings: Kings, Rubies and Devils!

    The long hot spell has culminated in a succession of humungous thunderstorms giving our brook and pond some much needed help. The high temperatures have meant that the moth trap has been heaving with a huge variety of species, dragonflies are whirring around the river banks and birds of prey have been...
  • Blog Post: Recent Sightings: Ravens, Whites and Worts!

    We're in the last Summer month and rains have soaked the reserve but that dosen't mean theres nothing to see! Great black birds dive in the sky and poisonous plants spring from the earth. Theres been a wealth of sightings recently at Coombes but heres a pick of some of the best: Ravens - These...
  • Blog Post: Recent Sightings: Hawkers, Hollies and Stinking Horns!

    A couple of nights ago I was sitting on the bench outside the visitor centre watching a brown hawker dragonfly hover over the nettles until it settled. A small white butterfly emerged from the vegetation and soared up into the air, the brown hawker burst into the sky! Zigzagging, judging the flight path...