2019 NEWS

EVENTS 2019

BIG BUTTERFLY COUNT 2019

The big butterfly count is a nationwide survey aimed at helping us assess the health of our environment. It was launched in 2010 and has rapidly become the world's biggest survey of butterflies. Over 100,000 people took part in 2018, submitting 97,133 counts of butterflies and day-flying moths from across the UK . The big butterfly count 2019 will take place from Friday 19 July - Sunday 11 August. Further details at Big Butterfly count

NEW BENCH

Deer Bench At Old Forest Road Meadows a new bench has been installed.The company that made it was Nick Speakman 3dwoods for Wokingham Borough Council. It is believed that the wood was from a tree felled for the Matthews Green devolopment. The Deer design was picked by the Emmbrook Residents Association.

BASH THE BALSAM 2019

Balsam Bash

Himalayan balsam

Himalayan balsam is an invasive non-native plant that is found along many rivers and waterways in the UK. It was introduced in the 19th century before spreading rapidly into the wild and is now the dominant species along the river bank in many areas of the country. It has a very effective seed dispersal mechanism as it has “exploding” seed pods allowing each plant to spread 600 seeds up to 5 metres from the plant. These seeds can then be transported downstream and colonise new areas quickly. These plants are are a problem as they grow in very dense stands and suppress the growth of native vegetation. In winter this becomes an issue as the plant dies back and leaves the banks vulnerable to erosion, with increased silt inputs potentially degrading spawning habitats for fish. It is therefore important to manage Himalayan balsam to prevent it getting out of control along our rivers.

Dates for the 2019 Balsam Bashing season will be announced later:

FOTEB AGM 2019

The FOTEB 2019 AGM was held on Monday 13th May at 19.15 - 21.15 at Woosehill Community Hall, Emmview Close, Wokingham RG41 3DA.

FOTEB LITTER PICK 2019

Litter Pick Litter Pick The FOTEB 2019 Litter Pick on Saturday 23rd March at 13:00 was a great success. Approximately 10 people turned up and the large amount of rubbish collected can be seen in the photos. Thanks to everybody who joined in

LOCAL WILDLIFE SITE - UPDATE 2019

Visiting Area 7 On Wednesday 13th February five students from Reading University joined FOTEB on a field trip. They were taken to three locations in order to gather information for their research project. Visiting Area 8 FOTEB are hoping that this will help them to find out if any sections of the Emm might be eligible for designation as a Local Wildlife Site.

WOKINGHAM BOROGH COUNCIL GREENWAYS PROJECT( PHASE 2 )

Wokingham Borough Council is starting phase 2 of its greenways project. The greenways project will create a network of traffic free multi-user routes which will connect the new major developments at Arborfield Garrison (Arborfield Green) and Shinfield Parish to Wokingham town and the new major developments in North and South Wokingham.Wokingham Borough Council is now seeking views on phase 2 which will link Arborfield Green to the new development at North Wokingham via Cole Lane, Coombes Lane, Foxhill, Woosehill, Holt Lane and Cantley Park. For more information visit the WBC website. Click here

MONTHLY BIRD WALKS AROUND DINTON PASTURES 2019

RSPB

A Date With Nature Monthly Saturday morning walk 1st Saturday of each month Location: Meet in the Dinton Pastures main car park in Wokingham RG10 0TH at 09:00. As the parking fee in the Dinton Pastures car park is £6 for 4 hours, the Local RSPB Group have arranged for participants to park for free in the car park of the Wheelwright Arms, which is close to the entrance to Dinton pastures but on the opposite side of the road. (Obviously, it would be appreciated if we give our custom to the pub RG10 0TR.) A three and a half hour walk around Dinton Pastures and Lavell's Lake (Area 10 of the Emm Brook) , suitable for everyone of all ages and we usually see/hear between 40 and 50 species of birds. Good cafe and toilets by the car park. Time: 9 am Price: £2 donation to the RSPB.

FRIENDS OF LAVELLS LAKE

On the second Sunday of every month Friends of Lavell Lake (FOLL) run a guided bird walk around the park covering Area 10 of the Emm Brook. Routes will vary depending on the time of year and last up to three hours. Wear suitable clothing as at times paths can be very muddy. We meet at 9am in the car park on Sandford Lane (opposite the Dinton Activity Centre entrance) and ask for a donation of £1 with no charge for children. For more information visit the FOLL website . Click here

Car park charges apply.

This Month on the Emmbrook
What to look for if you are out and about in

JULY

General

The arrival of summer is a fantastic time for viewing wildlife along the Emm. The skies are filled with birds many of them Swifts and Swallows which we only really get to see at the height of summer. Butterflies herald the start of warmer, longer days and, if you’re a butterfly enthusiast, it’s fun to see how many different species you can identify. Insects of all types will be more active and, if you’re lucky, you may even get to spot a few bats which will have a great interest in the increase in insects.

Birds

The first of the summer migrants to depart are the Cuckoos. The adults leave in July to be followed by the offspring from this year later. Somehow they find their way to Africa independently. Woodlands are largely quiet by July as the main bird breeding period is drawing to a close and territories do not need to be advertised.

Insects

The moths are now plentiful and can be attracted with lights at night. The large and magnificent Broad-bodied Chaser dragonflies can be easy spotted as they aggressively tussle with competitors over a patch of river, pond or wet ditch. They clash in mid air and with surprising loud impacts. Damselflies are common where there is any standing water. Hummingbird Hawkmoths look like tiny Hummingbirds - hovering in front of flowers and feeding on nectar with their long proboscis. Most years, between June and August these moths can be seen in Berkshire. They are day flying and often seen in gardens. They dart from one flower to the next and are expert at hovering, beating their wings so rapidly you can hear them hum. They are resident in the Mediterranean and migrate northwards through Europe in the spring. Hummingbird Hawkmoths breed in the UK but unless it's very mild are unlikely to survive our winters.

Butterflies

Marbled White

Butterflies are one of our most enduring symbols of summer. The UK is home to over 50 species of butterfly. Marbled Whites,Common Blues are in flight alongside the Emm in July.

 

Other Wildlife

In July many young mammals born earlier in the season are now out of the nest and visible You may spot baby Fox cubs. The evening is the best time to spot many species. Pipestrelle

This is peak bat-watching season. British bat species are garden friendly, eating midges and tiny insects that cause annoyance on summer evenings. The Pipistrelle bat is the smallest and most widespread, favouring buildings where they congregate in large colonies. They enjoy a modern house and will hide behind tile-hung walls or weather-boarding. Young are born in June and will fly in July. They feed on tiny Caddis Fly gnats and tiny moths and will continue the rest of the summer preparing for winter hibernation between November and March. A pond in the garden will ensure they have good food supplies available.There are 16 native British bat species, all are protected by law.

Young litters of Hedgehogs are now learning their survival skills. You may see or hear them foraging for food at night.

Plants & Trees

At this time of the year the showy rosebay willow herb can be found along the banks of the brook, Greater Bindweed can be seen climbing though the hedgerows. Its big white trumpet flowers open during the day then twist closed as night falls. Along the river banks the creamy white Meadowsweet flowers put out a heady summer scent and are accompanied by many other waterside species.

Why do leaves change colour

For more information click the linkJuly on the Emm Brook


Emmbrook Weather

Bernard Burton has been recording the weather alongside the Emm Brook since 1976. His weather station originally situated at Emmbrook Secondary School till 1996 and now at Emmbrook Junior School daily monitors the weather. For a more detailed anaylsis of the previous month's weather visit this link. Emmbrook Weather

For todays Emm Brook weather Todays Weather

For todays Emm Brook sunrise and sunset times Click here


Newsletters

At their meeting in November 2010 the FOTEB management committee took the decision to discontinue the printed newsletters for members. This decision was not taken lightly since there is of course a tradition of keeping members informed of events and sightings by way of regular printed newsletters. However, knowing that the majority of members have internet access and are regular visitors to our website - and having received an increasing number of representations from members expressing a wish to receive literature in an electronic format - your committee felt that the time had come to cease the time-consuming and costly production of regular printed newsletters and replace them with an online noticeboard on our website.

Click on Archive page at the top of the screen to view one of the previous News letters.

Emm Brook River levels now on line

The Environment Agency Website now has a daily update on river levels of the Emm near Tesco's in Area 2

2019 NEWS

EMMBROOK BIRD BOX USAGE 2018

The annual clearance and checking of the nest boxes along the Emm took place this year in January 2019. This was undertaken by Malcolm Dunmore, Charles Stickler,Mike Smith and Mike Saynor.

A full report can be found here. 2018 Bird Box Usage along the Emm

WOKINGHAM DISTRICT VETERAN TREE ASSOCIATION

Wokingham District Veteran Tree Association was formed ten years ago in 2007 and have just launched the WDTVA’s 10th Anniversary Report. This report summarising WDVTA activities and achievements across the Borough is now available on the WDVTA website at Click here