North Selby Mine  SAC


Private Property

 Owners:  Harworth Estates

Site Details

Walker:                                                Altitude 16m             Distance: 2197 m                 Walk time:  45-60 minutes 

This site was the far end of the Selby Mine field and teh transect covers what is now designated a Special area for conservation due to newt pond and invertebrates. Many scarce species are abundant here. The route skirts the site and includes the far soil heap  which contains the subsoil from teh oriiginal site The rest forms a shallow bowl  of coal shale ground and flattened formig a open mosaic habitats with invading alder scrub. Early succesion areas are dominated by Birds foot trefoil and fine grasses.  Untillrecently it was teh only colony of Marbled White and Dingy Skipper in the Vale of York but now has many satellites due to the abundance here. 


S1 starts at the boundary cuts diaginal to teh drain where Orange tip frequent and  where a very good area of grasslands holds Common Blue and Brown Argus. Through the barrier and up the road where occasional Holly Blue and good numbers of Speckled woods are seen. Taking road down to teh car park and immediately up the slope overlooking the pond. 

S2 along the pond and following scrubline to the Mine perimeter and around the corner. Follow teh pathways 5 metres from the perimeter to the steep sided small newt pond. 

S3 skirt the pond and the perimeter untill reaching the rough bank

S4 From base of teh bank go higher and return  along the base climbing up above teh small pond and following teh edge around

S5 Cross to the base of the bank and into teh rose garden then up to the top track untill dropping down into a valley.

S6 Follow valley to a small pond and then back to te hbase of the soil heap and follow to teh far end and up onto the heap. A real favourite for Dingy Skipper, a few Small heath and Mother Shipton and Burnett companion

S7 follows the track up onto the middle of teh soil heap turning back to wards the pond and then diagonall  to the base and cross the valley. 

S8 Climb the side of the bowl and follow the rim to the corner and onwards to the path onto teh  south face of the bank

S9 Follow the track till it emerges onto the rim and go straight on,  

S10 Turn to follow the bowl edge again through lots of vetchs and emerge at teh base of the Mound

S11 ascend the mound and down teh otherside back to the large Pond

Results 2023:

County wide 2023 results reflect  the 2022 Heat and drought  with Small Tortoiseshell and Peacock nearly halved for the second year against their 5 year average. Red Admiral arrived in force in July and took advantage of soft nettle growth of the rains and had their best year ever. Drought sensitive species on thin soils were badly hit,  particularly Dark -green Fritillary and Northern Brown Argus but also Ringlet, Green-viened White and Small Heath.  Less drought affected species along with the hottest June on record built even more on gains last year leading to Comma, Brimstone, Holly Blue and most Browns  having a fantastic year reaching all time highs. A increase of 9% overall was mostly due to sheer numbers of Meadow Browns and Gatekeepers ment 2023 nearly pipped 2014 as best year in modern times.  Most noticeable was the large differeces between moisiture retaining mineral soils of the valleys and thin, dry limestone or sandy soils. A large number of damp grassland, hedgerow and woodland  dominated sites benefitted hugely with 3 sites seeing more than 50% increase . A smaller number of thin, chalky, sandy or craggy sites did badly some down up to 25%.

North Selby Mine follows th ecountywide trends and unusually for a dry site saw a small increase in overall numbers. However  Dingy Skipper, Orange tip,  Ringlet ,Small Tortoiseshell and Small Heath suffering with the drought.   Winners were  the whites, the Lycaenids while  Speckled wood and Gatekeeper boomed as they did universally