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Wild Rosedale

Rosedale is a wild and rugged landscape and is teeming with wildlife. In this section you will find posts relating to nature and events that celebrate our rich countryside.

Great spotted woodpecker

Great spotted woodpeckers are sometimes seen on peanut feeders. However, at this time of year they may bring their young which is a real treat. The adult will take peanuts to a juvenile close by. The juvenile has a red crown and greyish breast and belly. Grateful thanks to a local resident for these stunning photos.  Updale Natural History Recorder

Juvenile great spotted woodpecker waiting to be fed by male adult

Female great spotted woodpecker

Well I never

Don’t be tempted to dismiss the Green-veined White butterfly as just another ‘Cabbage White’. The underwing is a delicate beauty, the vein edges highlighted with a dusting of dark scales. But it gets better. Male Green-veined Whites flutter about seeking females perched among leaves. On finding his beau the male showers her with a ‘love dust’ strong enough that we can pick up the lemon verbena scent. Females are programmed to mate but once however, some are promiscuous and go looking for males, mating up to five times in their short lives. During mating the male also transfers proteins and nutrients which allows these promiscuous females to live longer. Who would have thought.

It’s a common butterfly on damp grassland and open woodland and they don’t do well in droughts. So now this rain has eased go and have a look. Updale Natural History Recorder

Green-veined white butterfly

Oystercatchers wading in

Great to see a pair of oystercatchers here in Rosedale this morning. There is every chance that they have nested here. They usually breed on the coast but over recent years more and more are coming inland to breed. Oystercatchers are wading birds eating cockles and mussels but inland live mainly on worms. Updale Natural History Recorder

One of a pair of oystercatchers

Lovely Lady

A truly amazing butterfly, the Painted Lady is with us right now, amazing because they migrate from Africa. Beautiful markings, hence it’s name and if you get close enough look out for the proboscis it uses to get nectar from flowers. Next time you see one looking a bit tatty and faded just remember how far it has come.  They breed here and adults on the wing later in summer will be in pristine condition. Updale Natural History Recorder

Painted Lady butterfly

Feeding on nectar using proboscis

Showing mottled underwing


The treecreeper is a common bird here in Rosedale but not always easily seen.  It is a small bird and well camouflaged with its mottled brown upperparts against the bark of trees as it works its way up feeding on insects.  It then flits to the foot of another tree and repeats the process.  It has white underparts, a curved thin bill and exceedingly long hindclaws which enables it to defy gravity.  It nests in the tiniest of cavities and crevices of trees often behind lose bark.  Updale Natural History Recorder

Treecreeper showing mottled brown upperparts

Treecreeper feeding young at nest in crevice

Dipper success

The dippers here on the River Seven are busy nesting. One pair got off to a very early start, the female having laid five eggs by 23 March. With an incubation period of 16-17 days all had hatched by 9 April. The chicks are fed at the nest for 18-20 days by both adults but these nestlings have been a bit slow to leave home and finally the last one was seen leaving the area of the nest this morning (1 May). Although they don’t yet have the clear white front of the adult bird they still bob or dip just like them. Unmistakable. Nature at its best. Updale Natural History Recorder

Adult dipper

Fledgling dipper

Stunning wheatears up on old railway line

These beautiful wheatears are back in their numbers up on the edge of the moor. The male has a grey back and crown and a striking black eye-stripe with a white stripe above called a supercilium. The female has altogether browner colouring with a cream supercilium. Both have buff underparts and a white rump and both have a characteristic bob and flick action. You should see them from the old railway line on the east side of Rosedale and at the top of Chimney Bank. Worth getting your walking boots on. Updale Natural History Recorder

Male wheatear

Female wheatear

Rosedale History Weekend – 22 to 23 April 2017

The Rosedale History Weekend held at the Updale Reading Room was very well attended, helped by the excellent weather with visitors, many from out of the dale, enjoying a wide display of industrial, social and natural history material on show. The renowned Kildale industrial  historian, Malcolm Bisby gave a fascinating talk on Saturday on the development of the Rosedale branch on the North Eastern Railway and over thirty people (and three dogs) took part in the walks ups to East Mines over the two days

Rosedale Railway Talk with Malcolm Bisby

Ruby May dissecting owl pellets with Elspeth Ingleby from the National Parks

History Walkers 22 Apr 17

History Walkers 23 Apr 17

Heading Home

Many thanks to Tom Mutton and Eslpeth Ingleby of the TELI team, to the Ryedale Folk Museum for the loan of mining artifacts, to Janet, Margaret and Carol for the splendid array of refreshments, to the members of the Rosedale History Society who helped host the event and make it such a success and to Jimmy Barraclough for the use of his field for parking.