Otter playground

The photos below were posted to the RFS on Facebook by Jon Noble  – thank you! These are the closest we’ve seen, and it’s becoming clear that they are around for a while at least, as we’ve had several sightings. I wonder whether they are getting used to people.  Some years ago I followed an otter along the banks of … Read More

Making the Foss Walk More Usable

RFS Waymarking and Maintenance  The society has for many years traversed the Foss Walk, both in sections and in its entirety over a couple of days. Two facets have become ever more apparent recently; the lack of clear signage and poor maintenance: both leading to the walk becoming less and less used, particularly above Strensall. North Yorkshire County Council have … Read More

Castle Mill Basin Clear-up

Lynette Mills tells us that she has been working for some months now with Community Police Liaison officer Amy Hunter and the Community Payback Scheme to get the towpath in the Foss Basin cleaned up, and the bushes cleared and cutback.  You can see from the photos below some of the work done last Thursday with the towpath looking much … Read More

RFS at St. Nicks Autumn Fayre

The Society ran a stall at St. Nicholas Fields on Saturday 5th October to highlight the work we’ve been doing with St. Nicks Environment Centre. We talked to lots of people about walkover surveys of the river, watervole populations and habitat and water quality monitoring which form the bulk of our work with the team at the centre. We also … Read More

Duckweed on the Foss

We seem to be back with a green river, rather as last summer, so I thought that I’d revive the post from last year for those who did not see it. The RFS having had many queries about the duckweed that is covering much of the river, particularly in its lower reaches, the Environment Agency was asked for its advice. … Read More

Flood Model in The Hub, York

The Environment Agency has a small display of material relevant to the proposed flood defences around York in what they call the Hub in Wellington Lane (pretty much under Lendal Bridge). It’s only open a few days a a week but it’s well worth a visit – if nothing else you get a chance to talk to a friendly member … Read More


Have you seen a mink recently? After a long gap with no sightings on the Foss, we had a confirmed successful breeding attempt near Loch Fyne restaurant a few weeks ago. The family has moved on, presumably because they eliminated all the local small wildfowl and larger fish – feeding a growing family of mink demands a lot of prey. … Read More

New River Foss Project

This is an extract from the latest Yorkshire Wildlife Trust newsletter  – it’s an exciting new venture and we have high hopes for the outcome, particularly if it can continue beyond 2020 when the full benefits should become apparent. The River Foss Project is new this year having won a tender from the North Yorkshire County Council with funding from … Read More

Eutrophication – why is there so much green weed in the river? What will it do to the rivers inhabitants?

An Introduction to Eutrophication. Aquatic eutrophication (from the Greek, meaning ‘well nourish’) is the enrichment of natural waters with plant nutrients, which results in the stimulation of an array of symptomatic changes. These include the increased production of algae and other aquatic plants, affecting the quality of the water and the balance of organisms present within it. The nutrient status … Read More