Ancient Woodland Inventory Review

Wednesday 21 February, Worsbrough Common Community Centre, 7.00pm

Signs of Ancient Woodland?

England’s Ancient Woodland Inventory is being updated countrywide. David and Nick, from Sheffield & Rotherham Wildlife Trust, will be telling us how they are looking for woodland older than 400 years across South Yorkshire, including, of course, Barnsley. What are the signs? How can we be sure?

David and Nick are using previous research, historical maps & documents, mapping technologies (GIS), and field surveys of botanical & archaeological features. “It’s a big job but we’re excited to be involved in creating such a useful planning tool to protect these unique habitats.”

On Wednesday they will be sharing their enthusiasm. It should be a really informative session and no doubt will stimulate questions and discussion. And perhaps we can join in!

Wednesday 21 February, 7pm, at Worsbrough Common Community Centre, Warren Quarry Lane, Barnsley S70 4ND. Everyone welcome if you have an interest in our local ancient woodland. Just come along.

South Yorkshire Natural History Day

Saturday 17 February, 2024, at Miners Welfare, Arundel Street, TREETON
—Festival of Amateur Natural History—

The South Yorkshire Natural History day is taking place on Saturday 17 February with a programme of talks and displays on nature and wildlife in South Yorkshire. No need to book in advance; just turn up on the day. It starts at 10.30am and ends at around 3.30pm. All welcome; no need to book.

There are talks on Farmland Bird Surveys in Rotherham, 35 years on; White Letter Hairstreak Butterflies; Tawny Owls; Saving Swifts; Insects/Botany on Brownfield Sites; and Water Plants and Bank Stabilisation in the canal at Thorne.

Details can be found on the Sorby Natural History Society website:

Reasonably priced food (sandwiches, cakes and biscuits) and hot drinks will be available at all breaks, and there’s a bar at lunch time.

Getting there! —Treeton Miners Welfare, Arundel Street, TREETON, S60 5PW.

Treeton is a village accessed via the A630 Sheffield Parkway. Arundel Street is found when coming from Catcliffe, turning right straight after the traffic lights over the railway bridge (Or, if coming from Aughton, turn left before the traffic lights) by Cohens Chemist. Then go to the end of Arundel Street, where there is plenty of off-street parking.

Trees in winter, 10 February 2024

This coming Saturday morning [10th February] we are visiting Locke Park in Barnsley to look at how to identify trees in winter.

We are meeting in Locke Park car park at 10.00am.

The car park is on Keresforth Hall Road (off  the A6133, Park Road): Post code S70 6NE. Grid reference: SE33620520. What 3 Words: ///speak.winter.custom. There are bus stops on Park Road near St Edwards Church. 

Hopefully the weather will be ok!

Annual General Meeting 2024

On Wednesday 24 January, it was our AGM: 7pm at Worsbrough Common Community Centre. Alongside the AGM was a review of our last year and a film about the Dearne Valley and Carlton Marsh nature reserve. Plus time to talk to each other and have a discussion.

The committee is losing some members and we would very much like to see some new faces. The Society can only continue if members support it!

Are you willing to lead a field visit?
Or keep a record of what we see?
Can you suggest a new site for a field visit?
Can you recommend a speaker?
Or suggest a topic for a talk or ID session?
Would you be willing to help plan the future programme of field visits
or talks and other indoor sessions?
Are you interested in taking on some administrative jobs?

Just let us know!

Adwick washlands, Saturday 13 January 2024

Great to see so many this last Saturday morning at RSPB Adwick Washlands; a good birding session with splendid weather! Thanks to Lesley for leading the field visit and for producing the bird species list. As usual, great for a variety of wintering birds; a highlight was the five or six Tree Sparrows in the hedges at the Bolton-upon-Dearne end of the reserve. And of course we examined the lichens as well!

Meetings and field visits

Our next field visit is to Adwick Wetlands on Saturday January 13th, and our next indoor meeting is on Wednesday 24 January.

Barnsley Nats brings together people who share an interest in natural history and the wildlife of the Barnsley area. We have a programme of meetings and field visits throughout the year. Monthly indoor meetings take place from October to March at Worsbrough Common Community Centre. Field visits take place on the first Saturday morning of each month and on Wednesday evenings replacing the indoor meetings in the summer. See our programme page for details. Details for each event are also provided on this page.

Barnsley Nats Christmas Social

Thanks to everyone for coming to our Christmas Social yesterday and making it such an enjoyable event.

Thanks to Jill for a very enjoyable quiz. The nature table with rocks, lichens, beach finds and a 1950’s collection of eggs, kept people interested. Thanks too to Alan for downsizing the contents of his book shelves. And then Dennis showed us his invertebrate collection; yes all alive and fascinating.

Many thanks too for all the delicious food which was brought and sampled, a very good end to an enjoyable year of field visits and nature talks.

Wishing you all a happy Christmas and see you again in 2024, with our first field visit to Adwick Wetlands, on Saturday January 13th.

Anglers Country Park – Saturday 9th December

Our hope that the weather was better than last weekend’s, came clashing down with lashing rain! Still six Barnsley Nats members visited Anglers Country Park, dashing from hide to hide, and saw a surprising number of birds on the feeders and indeed on the water. And towards the end some sun! Just before we enjoyed a warming drink in the café.

And here are some lichens observed between the hides …

Ron Marshall’s ‘A birdwatcher’s year’ on Wednesday 22 November

Ron Marshall gave a brilliant account of his ‘Birdwatcher’s Year’ at the Barnsley Nats meeting on Wednesday 22 November in our new venue at Worsbrough Common Community Centre.
Great images and presentation as always!

For some of his local images have a look at:

Barnsley Nats talks and other indoor meetings, October to March 2024

Our Barnsley Nats monthly indoor meetings are at 
Worsbrough Common Community Centre (Vera Mawby Centre)
Warren Quarry Lane, off Park Road (A6133), Barnsley. 

Post Code: S70 4ND
What Three Words: ///daring.medium.weds
There’s parking in the Centre Car park and on the Warren Quarry Lane roadside.

The Wednesday evening dates for our talks (at 7pm) are:
Wednesday 25 October 2023: A Carrion Crow in Close-Up by Steve Byers
Wednesday 22 November 2023: A Birdwatcher’s Year by Ron Marshall
Wednesday 21 February 2024: Ancient Woodland Inventory Review by AWIR Project leaders, Nick and David,
Wednesday 20 March 2024: Wildflower Meadows by Chris Tomson.

Our Christmas Social is on Wednesday 20 December 2023 and our AGM on Wednesday 24 January 2024.

Our full programme including field visits can be seen on our programme page, see tabs above or go to:

Royd Moor reservoir – Saturday 11 November 2023

Our walk around Royd Moor Reservoir. As well as the reservoir and ponds, this local wildlife site has areas of woodland and heath, so lots to see.

There was an impressive flight of around 300 Greylag geese landing on the reservoir with some remaining in nearby field. On the reservoir too were Canada Geese, Tufted Duck, Mallards and plenty of Black headed Gulls with Teal displaying and a pair of Little Grebe at the silt pond. We also saw 3 Rooks, Carrion Crows, male and female Blackbirds, Kestrel, Sparrowhawk, Mistle Thrush, Jay, Robin, Wren, Great Tit, Blue Tit, Goldfinch, Yellowhammer, and Chaffinches.

We spotted a number of flowering plants, just about still in flower:
Yarrow, Ragwort, Zigzag clover, Mallow, Hawkweed sp., Harebell, Broom,
Hogweed, Herb Robert with Goat’s Rue not in flower.

And then Insects: Zebra spider, a snail eating beetle, Harlequin ladybirds;
Galls: Lots of Pineapple galls, one Oak apple and a Marble gall on Sessile Oak, possibly some Cola nut galls; and Fungi: