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Chance to keep weather eye open for Wharfedale
Wildlife enthusiasts are looking for a new weather recorder to uphold their long tradition of monitoring Wharfedale’s climate.
Come rain or shine, Wharfedale Naturalists has been documenting the temperature and rainfall in the valley since the organisation was founded in 1945.
The information helps offer an insight into the trends of flora and fauna thriving or disappearing from Wharfedale.
The society’s current recorder, Ilkley’s Julie Tight, is leaving the role soon, and the naturalists are looking for a volunteer to take on the work.
Society president Peter Riley said: “The information is used in our annual reviews, obviously weather does have a significant effect. It also features in our annual recorders’ evening.”
The new volunteer will be supplied with garden weather recording equipment by the society – which can also supply volunteers from within its own ranks to keep up the good work if the official recorder is away on holiday.
The society manages several Wharfedale nature reserves and also documents the diversity of animal, insect and plant species found in the valley each year, noting new arrivals as well as increasingly scarce wildlife.
The effects of the weather in each season, as well as features of global warming, are noted by the naturalists, says Mr Riley.
“It’s certainly coming out in the records, particular with regard to the temperature year on year,” he said.
“Temperature are generally above the long-term average.”
Surprisingly, the conditions and temperatures in the valley often differ from those recorded at the Met Office’s Bingley weather station and at Leeds Bradford International Airport, Yeadon.
Information gathered by the society’s recorders has shown that rainfall can vary within just a few miles.
“The interesting thing is, Addingham is a wetter place than Ben Rhydding and Ilkley,” said Mr Riley.
The mini weather station supplied to monitor temperature includes a Stevenson screen – a white-painted wooden box with slats for air to pass through - to get as accurate a reading as possible of temperature each day.
Anyone interested in taking on the role should call 01943 862916.