Basingstoke Conservation Volunteers
Hands-on help for local wildlife

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Calendar of Events - March to June 2013

It is a good idea to contact the organizer or task leader of the events before attending so that we can cater for numbers and arrange lifts if needed. All telephone numbers are Basingstoke area (01256) unless the code is given - you should also be able to contact the leader during the 2 days leading up to the task on the leader's mobile phone (the number is in the newsletter). Meet at 10am at the project site or at the toolshed at 9.30, unless other times are given. The numbers are OS grid references of the meet up point for the projects. Some of the sites are difficult to find, so if it's your first visit to a site, we'd recommend meeting us at the toolshed and then following the leader (who should know where he/she is going!) to the site.
Details in red are changes from the programme published in the newsletter.

This programme of events marks the transition winter to spring. We start in winter mode, with coppicing and scrub bashing during March, but as we move into April, we enter a more leisurely period, with social activities more to the fore and work parties becoming fewer and further between. There's still plenty of variety in the work-programme though, so hopefully there's something for everyone's tastes.
The social activity includes lots of outdoor activities, including walks and vists in search of all manner of wildlife - butterflies, flowers, snakes, birds and even glow worms. Let's hope that the weather enables us to enjoy all these to the full. For something completely different, the first event in the programme is a Wii evening!

Full details below ...


The tables below give a quick overview of when events are happening - click on the month name in a table's header to jump to details of events happening during that month, or click on the date to jump straight to details of that event. Hover your mouse over the info icon to get brief pop-up info on the event.

February 2013
Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
1 2
3 icon 4 5 icon 6 7 8 9
10 icon 11 12 13 14 15 16
17 icon 18 19 20 21 22 23
24 25 26 27 28
March 2013
Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
1 2
3 icon 4 5 6 7 8 9 icon
10 11 12 13 14 15 16
17 icon 18 19 20 21 22 23
24 icon 25 26 27 28 29 30
31
April 2013
Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
1 icon 2 3 4 5 6
7 icon 8 9 10 icon 11 12 13
14 icon 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 icon 22 23 24 25 26 27
28 29 30
May 2013
Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
1 2 3 4
5 icon 6 7 8 9 10 11 icon
12 icon 13 14 15 16 17 18
19 20 21 22 23 24 25
26 27 28 29 30 31
June 2013
Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
1
2 3 4 5 6 7 8
9 10 11 12 icon 13 14 15
16 icon 17 18 19 20 21 22
23 icon 24 25 26 27 28 icon 29
30
Colour key : Social Project Meeting Cancelled/moved Residential Project Multiple

February 2013
task Sun 3rd Pamber Forest Coppicing
This is the last chance to work at Pamber in this task programme; hopefully we'll be able to look back on a successful season as the early signs of spring begin to show in the forest.
Contact: on 07971 036166.
meeting Tue 5th Red Lion Pub Committee Meeting
It's committee meeting time again at the Red Lion pub, starting at 8pm. We'll be finalizing details of the Spring 2013 programme and planning other future events. All welcome.
Contact : for more info.
social Sun 10th South Coast Birdwatching trip
Mike is leading this trip to the south coast, to hopefully see many of the birds that make Britain's coastline one of the best places in the world to see maritime birds in their winter homes.
The exact location and meeting time will be announced nearer the time.
Contact : on 01635 268482 for further details.
task Sun 17th Bramshot Heath Scrub bash
We'll be finishing off this task programme by working on a new site for BCV.
Bramshot Heath is part of the HWT Grazing Reserves project and is close to Fleet. We are not able to confirm further details at the moment due to some access issues, but hopefully these will have been resolved well before this task comes around.
Contact: on 01635 268482.
March 2013
task Sun 3rd Pamber Forest Coppicing
The first task of the new programme of events marks the last task in the coppicing season at Pamber Forest. Spring is now getting very close, and the first signs of the woodland flora coming into bloom should be evident - always an uplifting sight. With the new growth however, comes the danger of damaging it and disturbing nesting wildlife whilst we work, so the coppicing season comes to an end ...
The meeting place will be announced a few days before the task.
Contact: on 01635 49304.
social Sat 9th Elizabeth's house Wii evening
Elizabeth is hosting a 'food and Wii' evening at her house, starting at 6pm.
Most of us will be complete novices, so it should be a laugh. Please bring along some food to share.
Contact : on 01256 765367 for more details and to coordinate food supplies.
task Sun 17th Aldersbrook Farm Blackthorn bash
This could be a milestone event on this privately owned site, which lies close to Headley and forms part of the HWT Enborne Valley Project. If all goes well, we may finally see the end of the dense blackthorn scrub on the eastern side of the meadow. With an established grazing regime in place, there should be no danger of it returning and once again smothering the grassland species currently present in the open areas.
The exact meeting place will be announced in the week before the task.
Contact: on 07848 007947.
task Sun 24th Sherbourne Meadow Scrub management
We finish off the 'winter' tasks with a visit to this damp meadow in Sherbourne, where we'll be cutting back some scrub before spring gets into full swing.
Conditions under foot are likely to be very wet, so make sure you have some wellies available if needed.
This is a private-owned site where parking is restricted, so it is essential to inform the leader that you plan to attend.
Contact: on 01635 268482.
April 2013
social Mon 1st Pamber Forest Adder Walk
We could call this event 'early spring flowers walk' or 'spring butterflies walk', but the promise of snakes is hard to beat! Dave will be leading us on a meandering stroll through Pamber Forest in search of adders and much more. Fingers crossed for some suitable weather. Starts at 10am.
The meeting place will be announced a few days before the task.
Contact: on 01256 420818.
social Sun 7th Pamber Forest Stream Dipping
HWT - Booking required
Dave is running this HWT event to discover the mini-beasts that abound in the streams and ditches in Pamber Forest. BCV members are welcome to attend, but a small donation to The Trust will be requested.
Meet at the Honeymill entrance to the forest at 10am.
Contact: on 01256 420818.
meeting Wed 10th Dave's House Committee Meeting
It's the mid-programme committee meeting, tonight being held at Dave J's house, starting at 8pm. Usually getting through the agenda is quite easy for these meetings, so there's time for some general reflection and discussion of ideas. All welcome.
Contact: on 01256 420818 if you need directions.
task Sun 14th Mapledurwell Fen Spring Fen cut
This reserve often needs a cut before the summer to keep the coarser plants in check, and this is today's plan of action. The Fen is one of HWT's smallest reserves, but also represents possibly the most valuable 1/2 hectare in Hampshire, containing many rare plants including helleborines and orchids. Once again, this is a wetland location, so bring some wellies in case they are needed.
Meeting location will be provided during the week before the task.
Contact: on 07971 036166.
social Sun 21st Pamber Forest Stream Dipping
Dave is guiding a short walk (just an hour before today's task, so starting at 9am) around Pamber Forest, listening out for the spring time bird song.
Exact meeting location will be announced in the week beforehand.
Contact: on 01256 420818.
task Sun 21st Pamber Forest Deer fencing
Following the winter's coppicing efforts, there will be lots of new hazel shoots springing up from the newly cut stools and this is manna from heaven for the local deer population. The problem with that is that this browsing can seriously stunt the regrowth and even kill the hazel in some cases.
The solution is to erect exclosure fences to keep the deer away from the hazel and this is today's task.
Note that Dave will also be leading a short 'bird song' walk (see above) in the forest before the task.
Exact meeting point will be provided in the week before the task.
Contact: on 01256 420818.
May 2013
social Sun 5th Bentley Wood Butterfly Walk
Join us for a spring walk in the area around Bentley Wood, just over the border in Wiltshire. The accent will be on butterflies as, while woodland specialists have been declining in many of our woods, Bentley Wood has resisted this trend.
In early May, if the weather is favourable, we might be lucky enough to see both Duke of Burgundy and Pearl-bordered Fritillary as well as more familiar spring species like Brimstone, Orange Tip or Speckled Wood.
We may also be able to take in the views from the chalk ridge of Dean Hill.
Departure time from Basingstoke will be 9.30, meeting on site at 10.30.
Contact: on 01635 268482.
social Sat 11th Pamber Forest Spring Walk
HWT - Booking required
Graham is running this HWT walk through Pamber Forest in search of butterflies, day-flying moths and any other wildlife that is around. A small donation will be requested.
Meet at the Impstone Road car park at 10am.
Contact: on 01189 700155.
task Sun 12th Pamber Forest Bracken bashing
This is a chance to let loose and get rid of any pent up energy that you may have. With recent legislation on chemical usage, currently the best (legal) way to control bracken in the forest is to 'bash it' manually, so that's what we'll be doing today. This bashing consists of finding a suitable stick and using it to break the stems of the bracken.
After a morning's hard work, we'll spend a more relaxing afternoon - see below.
Meeting location will once again be provided a few days before the task.
Contact: on 01189 700155.
social Sun 12th Pamber Forest Why Coppice?
Following this morning's task, Graham is leading a walk through some of the recently coppiced plots in Pamber Forest to see the effects of our work.
Hopefully we'll be able to see the progression of the flora as the years pass after a coupe is cut. If you'd like to learn more about woodland flowers and how to identify them, this is your chance.
Meet at the work site for today's task. If you are not attending the task, make sure Graham knows that you coming so that we don't set off without you! We should be setting off at between 1 and 1:30pm.
Contact: on 01189 700155.
June 2013
meeting Wed 12th Red Lion Pub Committee Meeting
It's time to plan the new programme of events, and we're meeting at the Red Lion pub in Mortimer West End. The start time is 7pm and we're planning to be finished by 9pm in time for the event below ...
Contact: on 01189 700155 if you need directions.
social Wed 12th Benyon's Enclosure Nightjar watching
Weather permitting, once we've finished the meeting, we'll head off across the road and into Benyon's Enclosure in search of nightjars. This charismatic nocturnal bird should be performing its remarkable territorial behaviour at this time.
Meet at the Red Lion Pub in Mortimer West End by 9pm.
Contact: on 01189 700155.
task Sun 16th Foxlease Meadows North Ragwort Pull
Foxlease Meadows, close to Fleet, are managed by HWT, using grazing to maintain the open conditions that bring in a rich range of wildlife species. Today we will be joining the local volunteer group to perform a mass ragwort-pull - this work is essential for the health of the grazing animals as ragwort is poisonous to them.
The reserve will be at its prime at this time of year, so this task will also allow us to enjoy some of its wildflowers and their accompanying fauna.
Meeting location will be provided as usual a few days before the task.
Contact: on 07425 160394.
social Sun 23rd Dry Sandford Pit Reserve Visit
The final BCV event of this programme is a trip into foreign territory. We're heading north into the world of BBOWT (Berks Bucks & Oxon Wildlife Trust), and will be visiting Dry Sandford Pit near to Abingdon.
This is a varied reserve, ranging from sandy 'cliffs' (reputedly with fossils) and grassland, to woodland and wetland. We'll be meeting on site at 10:30 and a pub lunch may be an option.
More details will be provided in the week leading up to the event.
Contact: on 01635 49304.
social Fri 28th Old Burghclere Lime Pits At night in the quarry
HWT - Booking required
Dave is leading this hunt for glow worms and other nocturnal creatures in Old Burghclere Lime Pits. A mothing lamp will also be running, so there should be plenty of moths to see and hopefully their presence will entice some bats into the area. Be sure to bring some sunglasses for use near the moth trap. A small donation will be requested.
Meet at the northern end of the nearby farm storage yard at 9pm.
Contact: on 01256 420818.
July 2013 onwards
Details for July 2013 onwards will be pulbished towards the end of Juney ...
Basingstoke Conservation Volunteers
Hands-on help for local wildlife

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