Bastow Wood YWT
Recorders: Ian Powell and Ian Court
Lea Green lies just to the east of Bastow Wood and is the site of quarrying for lead and limestone that needed a ready supply of timber for charcoal from the woods. It is also very close to Grass Wood and lies in Wharfedale. This transect covers an area of Carboniferous Limestone near Grassington, Wharfedale that supports flora typical of limestone grassland including Common Rock Rose Helianthemum nummularium. The transect route passes through a Northern Brown Argus colony before entering Bastow Wood, one of only two Ash-Hazel woodland pastures in the YDNP. The very thin unimproved limestone grassland and scree with some brackenin S1 is perfect for the Small Heath and the Northern Brown Argus abounds . S2 becomes more limestone pavement and then down into a very favoured gully of S3 Thes soils are at their thinnest in S1-3 perfect for Northern Brown Argus but also Dark Green Fritillary and Green Hairstreaks. You then descent down the slope towards Bastow Woods and longer grasses and scrub and encroaching birch with patchs of Rock rose The longer grasses are perfect for the Scotch Argus and Meadow Brown. By S7 you enter woodland with grassy glades and the grasses longer and the Speckled Wood and Vannesids favour. S9 is a green lane and hedgerow
Numbers per section are dominated by the large numbers of Small Heath which favour S2 and S3. The Scotch Argus preferes S4 -5. Meadow Brown prefer S1-2 and S5 and S7 Northern Brown Argus are found on S2 but also S1 and S3 . The Fritillaries favour S4 but also S2-3. Green Hairstreak is mostly S3 . Common Blue 1 and 3. Teh vannesids favour woodland of S7-9 and Speckled Wood 7
A pretty good year with the scarcer species holding up well with only Ringlet showing a decrease after the long hot summer of 2019 and drought of spring 2020 . Common Blue and particularly Small Tortoiseshell had a very good year. NB alot of the data is based on estimates as walk frequency was low.