Pexton

Bank FC

Thornton le Dale

Site Details

Recorders Ian Popely, Graham Oliver and Paul Cogan Distance 900m Walk time= 40mins

At the entrance to the Dalby Forest scenic drive just outside Thornton le Dale this site is a dry unimproved limestone grassland on the tabular hills. The path follows an ancient earthwork and ditch from Ellerburn Bank to the Dalby Forest drive Car Park along the top ridge of the eastern side of Thornton Dale. It was largely native mature mixed woodland replanted with pine planataions and now being restored , it slopes steeply to the east . The route follows various scallops cut into the forest and the ditch in places. Duke of Burgundy has been seen in the ditch and the Marsh thistles and Bugle are favourites with our other Fritillary species.

Sections

S1 is a small meadow to the east of the foot path sharing many species with adjoining Ellerburn Bank but contains a good many violets and a strong Colony of Dark green Fritillary and Dingy Skipper plus an occasional Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary. It is also the favourite of the Wall and Brown Argus and Common Blue and plenty of Marbled Whites can be seen.

S2 is the footpath with lesser number of woodland edge species like Speckled Wood and Green -viened White

S3 another loop from teh main path sees Small Heath and is the home to more Small Pearl-bordered Fritillaries.

S4 counts are very low

S5 has tall grass loving species like Large Skipper and high counts of Ringlets

S6 favours the damp loving of Orange Tip and Speckled Wood

2020 Results

2021 was a much better year than 2020 but not exceptional like 2019.

Brimstone and Orange Tip saw increases as in many Yorkshire transects. Dingy Skipper saw an increase to a new high. Large Skipper returned in better numbers and there is obvious signs of recovery after teh spring 2020 severe drought in many species . Brown Argus, Common Blue and Small Copper had some of there best counts , Comma and Red Admiral did particularly poorly as they did almost everywhere while Dark-green Fritillary had its best year. Speckled Wood is stil recovering while Marbled White boomed as it did elsewhere and Wall did well

Transect reports 2020

2020 Results

A poor year compared to recently particularly amongst our grassland species with Wall brown not appearing, Skippers apear to be in a steady decline. teh migrant Vannesids were wel down as they were on many sites along with large whites but unusually Peacocks had a poor year as well. Fritillaries werea littel down while Dingy skipper looks fairly steady. Duke of Burgundy was not seen. See comaprisons below:

The following adjustments were applied to compensate for missing beginning of the season: Dingy +5, Large White +1, GVW +7, Brown Argus +1, Red Admiral+2, Small Pearl +2, DGF +5, Peacock +5, Small Tort +1