Back from the Brink, Roots of Rockingham 

Events and training

Here you can see the programme of planned events together with a record of those that have already taken place.
 
The latest news about the Rockingham Forest project is here.
There is more background information about the project here.

For more information, or if you would like to attend any event please contact 

Susannah O’Riordan, BftB Rockingham Forest Project Officer 

 

Email:             soriordan@butterfly-conservation.org 

Direct line:      01780 444067           Mobile: 07483 039324 (limited reception)

Based at:        Forestry Commission Office, Top Lodge, Fineshade, Corby, Northamptonshire NN17 3BB

Beautiful Birds - Creative Writing Workship

Friday 8 November 11:00-13:00
Top Lodge, Fineshade NN17 3BB

A creative writing workshop celebrating woodland birds.
Calling all authors and creative writing enthusiasts – spring chickens and seasoned writers are all invited! Develop your skills as an author, inspired by nature.

Join celebrated professional author Julia Thorley and Back from the Brink for a creative writing workshop inspired by the woodland birds of Fineshade Wood as part of the Roots of Rockingham project.

The session begins with a walk to soak up inspiration and continues indoors in the Little Barn venue for exercises in creative writing.

This is a free event, booking essential.  Car parking fee payable

rootsofrockingham@butterfly-conservation.org
01780 444067
 

Beginners Wildlife Film and Photography Workshops

Volunteers Workshop:      Fri, 2 August 2019, 10:30 – 15:30

Public Workshop:             Sat, 3rd August 2019, 10:30 – 15:30

 Top Lodge Cafe, Fineshade, nr Corby, NN17 3BB

Join award-winning photographers Alex Hyde and Neil Aldridge for a fascinating introduction to the world of wildlife photography and film.  Alex and Neil will talk you through the basics of capturing images and footage followed by hands-on training in Fineshade Wood.  Learn how to tell your own stories and show the rest of the world the wildlife on your doorstep!

 

Tea and coffee will be provided, please bring your own packed lunch to keep energised in the field. 

 

The Friday 2nd workshop is for Roots of Rockingham project volunteers, if you are not a volunteer not to worry - the same workshop will be running on Saturday the 3rd August for everyone! 

 

Wildscreen is a UK-based conservation charity that convenes storytellers with conservationists to create compelling stories about our natural world that inspire everyone to feel part of it and protect it Booking is essential. Please book thorough Eventbrite:

 

Fri 2nd August     https://volunteerworkshoproots.eventbrite.co.uk 
Sat 3rd August    https://publicworkshoproots.eventbrite.co.uk

Sunday 14th July 10.30am-1pm
Top Lodge, Fineshade NN17 3BB

Butterflies of Fineshade

Join Butterfly Conservation to discover some of the butterflies that can be found at this fabulous site.  Last year we saw 23 species on our walk, so we’ll be looking to see if we can beat that this year!  Species we’ll be hoping to see include Silver-washed Fritillary, White-letter Hairstreak, White Admiral, Purple Hairstreak and Dark Green Fritillary.

Meet in the courtyard of Top Lodge Grid Ref. SP981983 (Postcode NN17 3BB)

This is a free event.  Car parking fee payable (£4).

Silver-washed Fritillary and Painted lady

Bat-survey training

Wednesday 10th July 3.30 - 11 pm  

Marholm Village Hall PE6 7JA & Castor Hanglands NNR

An opportunity to take part in some bat monitoring in the Rockingham Forest area to identify and quantify the species that are present and gather data for our target bat species, the Barbastelle  bat. 

 

Attendees will be trained on how to use bat detecting equipment, plan a transect route, identify Barbastelle in the field and carry out a transect survey in the evening. Once trained, all attendees will have all the necessary skills to monitor other sites throughout Rockingham Forest.

No previous bat surveying skills needed.  All equipment will be provided.

Free event but booking required.

Contact Liz Morrison at rootsofrockingham@butterfly-conservation.org or on 01780 444067 to book your place or for more information.

Barbastelle Bat

Photo Phil Richardson

Butterfly ID & Survey training  

Friday 3rd May 10.00am - 2.30pm  
Top Lodge, Fineshade, nr Corby, NN17 3BB

Join Back from the Brink, with Butterfly Conservation, to learn how to identify and survey for some of our rare butterflies – Grizzled Skipper, Dingy Skipper and Wood White. 

This workshop will focus on the habitat requirements & identification of these species and how to survey for them using timed counts and species transects.  You’ll then have the skills needed to help us survey and monitor the populations of these species within Rockingham Forest.  

 

Free event but booking required.

 

Contact Susannah O'Riordan soriordan@butterfly-conservation.org  or

phone 01780 444067   to book your place or for more information

Grizzled Skipper
Iain H Leach, Butterfly Conservation

Reptile Ramble

Saturday 13th April 10.00 - 12:00 am
Top Lodge, Fineshade, nr Corby, NN17 3BB

Discover the secretive world of our native lizard and snake species with John Baker from Amphibian & Reptile Conservation.  John will provide a fascinating introduction to this group, their ecology and how to find them as we explore the woods to see what we can discover.

 

Free event but booking required.

 Contact Susannah O'Riordan soriordan@butterfly-conservation.org  or

phone 01780 444067   to book your place or for more information.

Adder
Photo by Dave James

Bird Survey training  workshops March 2019

Thursday 21st March 10.30am-3.30pm  
Top Lodge, Fineshade, nr Corby, NN17 3BB

Wednesday 27th March 10.30am-3.30pm
Welcome Centre, Little Stanion, NN18 8FZ

Help monitor some of our threatened species!

We’re looking for willing surveyors with birding experience to help survey and monitor Marsh Tit, Spotted Flycatcher & Lesser Redpoll across woodlands within the Rockingham Forest area. The training will involve learning survey methods, identification tips and habitat evaluation before choosing a site to survey.  The methodology is based on the Common Bird census so ability to be able to identify the target species by their song/call is necessary.  Part of the day will be spent indoors and part out in a nearby woodland.

The workshop is running on two dates at different locations (you only need to come along to one of these).

This workshop is free of charge.  
Email soriordan@butterfly-conservation.org to book

Spotted Flycatcher at Fineshade

Reptile identification and surveying workshops 2019

Tuesday 12th March 10.30am-3.30pm  
Top Lodge, Fineshade, nr Corby, NN17 3BB

Saturday 16th March 10.30am-3.30pm
Top Lodge, Fineshade, nr Corby, NN17 3BB

Help monitor two of the UK’s rarest species!

WLearn how to identify and survey for reptiles.  Lizards and snakes, particularly adders, are among the key target species for the Roots of Rockingham project.  Reptiles can be elusive animals so we need your help to find out more about where they occur in the Forest and to monitor their populations.  This course is suitable for volunteers who would like to undertake reptile surveys.  It will involve some work outdoors.  No previous experience necessary

The workshop is running on two dates at different locations (you only need to come along to one of these).

This workshop is free of charge.  
Email soriordan@butterfly-conservation.org to book

Male Adder on a monitoring mat

Bird Survey training Jan-Feb 2019

Thursday January 31st 10.30am-3.30pm  
Top Lodge, Fineshade, nr Corby, NN17 3BB

Wednesday February 6th 10.30am-3.30pm
Benefield Village Hall, Main Street, Lower Benefield, Peterborough PE8 5AF

Help monitor two of the UK’s rarest species!

We’re looking for willing surveyors with birding experience to help survey and monitor Willow Tits and/or Lesser Spotted Woodpeckers across woodlands within the Rockingham Forest area. The training will involve learning survey methods, including the playback method for Willow Tits, and habitat evaluation before choosing a site to survey.

The workshop is running on two dates at different locations (you only need to come along to one of these).

This workshop is free of charge.  
Email soriordan@butterfly-conservation.org to book

Willow Tit.  Photo: Bob Bullock

Habitat creation in Fineshade

Here's an opportunity to help to benefit the wildlife in Fineshade Wood. We've all seen the amazing difference that widening the rides has made in Westhay, the southern part of Fineshade. Much of this work has been done by heavy machinery, but now we need to do some work by hand. 

Come and help us clear vegetation along a fence line to enable the fence to be removed, so that a ride can be widened.  All tools and training provided, along with tea and biscuits!  Wear sturdy footwear and clothing you don’t mind getting dirty, and bring a packed lunch with you.  Please let Susannah know (details above) if you’re planning to come, as this enables her to bring enough tools and contact you if there are any last minute changes.  Hoping to see you there!

Meet next to Visitor’s Centre, Top Lodge, NN17 3BB.

Date: Tuesday 8th January

Time: 10 a.m. - 3.30 p.m (Stay for as little or long as you like).

Winter work parties

Susannah says:

Our programme of winter work parties is about to start – with our first event taking place next week at Fermyn Woods!  Here's a list of dates and locations for the next few months.  If anyone could spare some time, it would be great to see you and have some willing pairs of hands.

 

  • Wednesday 31st October  - Fermyn Woods – Raking & Scrub clearance

  • Wednesday 14th November - Bedford Purlieus – Strimming & raking

  • Tuesday 4th December - Bedford Purlieus – Glade/Scallop work

  • Wednesday 19th December – Bedford Purlieus – Glade/Scallop work

  • Tuesday 8th January - Fineshade – Vegetation clearance

  • Tuesday 22nd January - Castor Hanglands – Scallop creation

  • Tuesday 12th February - Castor Hanglands – Scallop creation

  • Wednesday 13th March - Castor Hanglands – Scallop creation

 

All work parties run from 10am to 3.30pm (but you don’t need to stay for the whole time).  All tools and training provided.  Wear sturdy footwear and clothing you don’t mind getting dirty, and bring a packed lunch with you!  Please let me know if you’re planning on coming along, as this enables me to bring enough tools and contact you if there are any last minute changes.

November 2018: Managing woodlands with wildlife in mind

8 November 2018 9:30am - 4:30pm at Top Lodge, Fineshade

Learn about the importance of woodland habitats for a variety of species, including birds, plants, butterflies, bats and reptiles, and how even simple changes to land management can provide vital habitat for rare and common species.

 

This free workshop is aimed at landowners, land managers, foresters and anyone involved in woodland conservation.  The aim is to provide attendees with an understanding of the importance of woodland habitats for a variety of species and provide them with advice on how management can be tweaked to benefit wildlife.  There will be short talks in the morning focusing on species ecology and habitat management techniques. Lunch will be provided, followed by a site visit in the afternoon. 

Download the agenda here:                 

 

Booking essential.  Contact Susannah O’Riordan

September 2018: Bat workshop
 

Introduction to Call Analysis
12 September 2018 12:30-4:30pm at Top Lodge, Fineshade

This session is a great opportunity to learn how to identify British bat calls. You will learn how to analyse data recorded on full spectrum bat detectors using call analysis software. The software provides images of the calls (sonograms), allowing you to look at the call shape and parameters of each bat pass in detail. The training is free and refreshments will be provided. Please bring your own laptop installed either with Windows 7, 8.1, and 10. Or for macOS you will need version 10.8 or later.

Booking essential.  Contact Susannah O’Riordan

September 2018: Reptile walk

15 September 2018 10:00-11:30am at Top Lodge, Fineshade

Discover the secretive world of our native lizard and snake species with Brian Laney, Northants County Recorder for Reptiles & Amphibians. 

 

Brian’s enthusiasm and knowledge will provide a fascinating introduction to this group, their ecology and how to find them, as we explore the woods to see what we can find.

Booking essential.  Contact Susannah O’Riordan

15 September 2018 6:45-9:00pm in Fermyn Wood 
Grid ref  SP96498589

Come and join us for an evening of bat hunting and moth trapping at Fermyn Wood as part of the Roots of Rockingham Forest project.  This is a fantastic opportunity to find out more about the different species of moths and bats living in and around the wood. 

Please bring a torch.

Booking essential.  Contact Susannah O’Riordan

This event is being run as part of the Nene Valley Festival 

September 2018: Moths and bats
 

16 September 2018 9:00-10:30am in Fermyn Wood

Join us at this free event to discover the magical world of moths - over coffee and croissants! Our team will have set up moth traps the previous evening, so come along and test out your identification skills, with the help of the experts, or simply marvel at the variety of shapes, colours and sizes.  County moth recorder Mark Hammond will be on hand to help identify all our finds before we release them back into the wood.  

Booking essential.  Contact Susannah O’Riordan

This event is being run as part of the Nene Valley Festival 

July 2018: Bat Survey Training
 

18 July 2018, 3:30pm to 11:15 pm in Fineshade Wood     ...  or .....
25 July 2018, 3:30pm to 11:15 pm in Old Sulehay Nature Reserve 

An opportunity to take part in some bat monitoring in the Rockingham Forest area to identify and quantify the species that are present and gather data for one of the project's target bat species, the Barbastelle Bat.

 

Attendees will be trained on how to use bat detecting equipment, plan a transect route, identify Barbastelle in the field and carry out a transect survey in the evening.

Once trained, all attendees will have all the necessary skills to monitor other sites throughout Rockingham Forest. No previous bat surveying skills needed, equipment will be provided and tuition is free.

Booking essential.  Contact Susannah O’Riordan 

Barbastelle Bat

Photo Phil Richardson

23 June: Bat and Moth Night
 

June 23, 2018 9:0pm till late in Fineshade Wood

Come and join an evening of bat hunting and moth trapping at Fineshade Wood as part of the Roots of Rockingham Forest project.

This is a fantastic opportunity to find out more about the different species of moths and bats living in and around the wood with Sonia Reveley from Bat Conservation Trust and Mark Hammond, our county Moth Recorder.

Please bring a torch. Stay as late as you like.

Booking essential.  Contact Susannah O’Riordan 

Privet Hawkmoth

22 and 23 June: Plant identification and surveying
 

Two free training sessions at Wakerley Woods NN17 3BA
10:00 - 1.00 
Either Friday 22nd June or Saturday 23nd June

 

This workshop, led by Plantlife's Tim Pankhurst, is aimed at anyone who would like to get involved in helping us survey and record Roots of Rockingham’s target plant species in woodland sites within the Rockingham Forest area. Target species include Basil Thyme, Fly Orchid, Man Orchid, Yellow Bird’s-nest and Crested Cow-wheat. 

 

During the morning session you will learn how to identify the key species and be introduced to the methodology we will be using to survey and monitor them. 

 

Once trained, all attendees will have the necessary skills to monitor other sites throughout Rockingham Forest. The session will take place outdoors

 

Fly Orchid

Photo (c) Andrew Gagg, Plantlife

April 2018: Reptile identification and surveying
 

Two free training sessions at Top Lodge, Fineshade NN17 3BB
10.30 - 3.00 at Top Lodge
Either Wednesday 4th April or Saturday 14th April

 

Learn how to identify and survey for reptiles with John Baker from the Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Trust (ARC)

 

Lizards and snakes, particularly Adders, are among the key target species for the Roots of Rockingham project.  Reptiles can be elusive animals so we need your help to find out more about where they occur in the Forest and to monitor their populations. 

 

This training is suitable for volunteers who would like to undertake reptile surveys and will involve some work outdoors.  No previous experience is necessary.

 

Adder at Fineshade.

Photo: Jandy Photography of Stamford.

March 2018: Introduction to Bats
 

Training at Fineshade Wood for volunteers
10.30 - 5.00 at Top Lodge

The Bat Conservation Trust (BCT) is the leading NGO solely devoted to the conservation of bats in the UK and the landscapes on which they rely. On Friday 23rd of March 2018 from 10.30 am, BCT will be providing a day of talks and workshops for volunteers who would like to help BftB Rockingham Forest monitor their target bat species.

Introduction to Bats

This training is aimed at those who are new to bats and would like to know more. During the day we will cover the following:

  • What is a bat?

  • How do bats use woodland?

  • Bat identification in the field

This will be followed by a workshop (Using your ears) introducing the four main elements of bat calls that are used to help differentiate between species in the field when using heterodyne detectors.

Timetable

10.30 am   Arrival – tea and coffee

11.00 am   Overview of the day

11.10 am   What is a bat? – bat biology and ecology

12.10 pm   How do bats use woodland?

12.45 pm   Lunch – bring your own lunch

1.30 pm     Walk around Fineshade Wood – look at tree features

2.30 pm     Coffee break

2.50 pm     Bat identification in the field

3.20pm      Break

3.30 pm    Using your ears workshop

4.45pm     Any questions?

5.00 pm    Finish

The day in March will be followed by a practical session in July. 

Two Fineshade bat species - Common Pipistrelle above and Brown Long-eared below.

Photos: Phil Richardson

January 2018: Bird Survey Training at Top Lodge

 
Repeated 8 February at the Wildlife Trust Field Centre at Ring Haw
Time 10:30am-3:30pm

The aim of the day is to provide  an introduction to the project and, in particular to the identification and habitat requirements of the target bird species: Willow Tit, Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Lesser Redpoll, Marsh Tit and Spotted Flycatcher.  Three different surveys are being planned to assess current population levels in the Rockingham Forest woodlands. These surveys will include the use of playback and will be able to be carried out by anyone with basic birdwatching skills and interest in monitoring birds in woodland.

 

Part of the day will be spent indoors and part out in the adjacent woodland. Everyone is welcome to these free training events.

For more information, or if you would like to attend, please contact Susannah O’Riordan (Back from the Brink Rockingham Forest Project Officer) Tel: 01780 444067 or 07483 039324, or email: soriordan@butterfly-conservation.org.

Which tit is this? - click here to see what we thought in February 2016

November 2017: 2nd event - a conservation work party

On Sunday 19th November the Cambs & Essex Branch of Butterfly Conservation are organising a work party at Castor Hanglands National Nature Reserve, Nr Peterborough. It will concentrate on habitat management aimed at the re-introduction of the Chequered Skipper butterfly. What better way of spending a Sunday morning than by helping out with some practical conservation work?

 

Meet at 10am at Castor Hanglands (NNR), Helpston Road, nr Ailsworth. 
Grid reference is TF12500167. Nearest post code: PE6 7EZ.

There is a layby in front of the gate and some parking will be available inside the reserve. 

 

For more information, or if you would like to attend, please contact Susannah O’Riordan (Back from the Brink Rockingham Forest Project Officer) Tel: 01780 444067 or 07483 039324, or email: soriordan@butterfly-conservation.org.

September 2017: First event - Moth Breakfast!

On 20th September 2017

Fermyn Woods, Harley Way, NN14 3JD

9am – 11am.  Free.

Join Butterfly Conservation to discover the magical world of moths - over coffee and croissants!

 

Our team will have set up moth traps the previous evening, so come along and discover what we’ve caught.  County moth recorder Mark Hammond will be on hand to help identify all our finds before we release them.  If you have any moths from your own traps that you would like help identifying, please bring them along too. 

 

Booking essential. Contact Susannah O’Riordan
soriordan@butterfly-conservation.org Mobile: 07483 039324

 

This event is free thanks to the Heritage Lottery Funded project Back from the Brink, and is being run as part of the Nene Valley Festival.

Burnished Brass and Poplar Hawk Moth

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