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 youre a butterfly enthusiast, its fun to see how many different species you can identify. Insects of all types will be more active and, if youre 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.

For more information click the link July 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 Click here

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

2018 NEWS

FOTEB LITTER PICK 2018

CANCELLED DUE TO THE WEATHER

A litter pick will take place on 18th March 2018 @ 10.00. Meet at Morrisons, between the Community Centre and Morrisons entrance in Woosehill. Please wear suitable clothing including gloves. Litter pickers and bags will be provided.

FOTEB AGM 2018

The FOTEB 2018 AGM was held on Monday 14th May at 19.15 - 21.15 at Woosehill Community Hall, Emmview Close, Wokingham RG41 3DA.

BASH THE BALSAM 2018

Balsam Bash

Himalayan balsam

Himalayan balsam is classified as a Non Native Invasive Species and as such can take over large areas of river bank or damp habitat.It was introduced by the Victorians for use in ornamental gardens. As well as causing problems for native species, Himalayan balsam substantially increases the risk of riverbank erosion. It does this by stopping native bankside vegetation growing. The roots of these natives would bind the banks. With just balsam in the autumn, when it dies it leaves only bare soil that is easily eroded and washed away by any subsequent rain or flood events. It is possible to eradicate Himalayan balsam (not an option with most invasive plant species) from infested river catchments because its morphology and life cycle display a number of weaknesses that are uncharacteristic of such high profile invasive species. These include:

the plant has an annual life cycle, meaning it germinates, grows, flowers, seeds and dies in the one year;

the tall plant has a shallow root ball so easily removed by pulling;

the plant has no natural defence mechanisms, such as thorns or bristles, to make pulling difficult or hazardous;

the majority of the seeds germinate after one year and seeds are the only propagation method of this species. Dates for the 2018 Balsam Bashing season are as follows:

Wed 4 July Area 6. Emmbrook school to Railway bridge at 17:00.

Sun 08 July Area5. Dragonfly bridge to Barkham Road bridge. Meet at 0900 at Dragonfly Bridge at the rear of Morrisons.

Thur 12 July Area3. Barkham Road to Finchampstead Road meet by Lidl car park on Ashville Way at 17:00.

Sat 14 July Area 7. Old Forest Road to Embrook School, meet at 0900 at the lay by on Old Forest Road.

MONTHLY BIRD WALKS AROUND DINTON PASTURES 2018

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.

2018 NEWS

OAK TREE SET ON FIRE

18/06/18 Burnt Oak Tree

In an act of mindless vandalism an Oak tree near Kingfisher Bridge was recently set on fire. The Fire Brigade were called to put it out.

EMMBROOK MEADOWS POND

03/04/18 Woosehill Meadow Pond Sign

The observant ones of you will have noticed that the Woosehill Meadow Pond Sign is not in its rightfull place in Area 5. The sign was found uprooted, and has been removed, prior to reinstatement at a later date .

EMMBROOK BIRD BOX USAGE 2017

The annual clearance of the nest boxes along the Emm took place this year on in January 2018. This was undertaken by Malcolm Dunmore, Charles Stickler, Eddie Napper and Mike Saynor.

checked the nest boxes along the Emm in January 2018. A high proportion of the nest boxes were used again. A full report can be found here. 2017 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 WDTVAs 10th Anniversary Report. This report summarising WDVTA activities and achievements across the Borough is now available on the WDVTA website at Click here