45 Gill Bank Rd, Ilkley LS29 0AU, UK
Crabtree Ghyll is one of a number of woods that occupy the sides of the Wharfe valley interspersed with grazing/hay meadows, the upper edges of these woods often adjoin moorland. Crabtree Ghyll is part of a much larger area of woodland, as it’s name suggests it occupies a steep sided valley which drains into the Wharfe.
Although it is known that the land was historically part of the Myddleton Estate, there are no known records of management.
Ramsons, also known widely as wild garlic, carpets the woodland floor during spring. The pointed oval shaped leaves appear first as the days lengthen and the air warms. Clusters of white flowers follow in April through June. This plant is considered an ‘ancient woodland indicator’ and its presence suggests that this area of land has been wooded for a significant period of time.
A tributary of the River Wharfe bisects the woodland and tumbles downhill at the deepest point below the wooded slopes. Deadwood that falls and jams in the watercourse can provide habitat for species of saproxylic invertebrates. These animals in turn can become food for the likes of wagtails, flycatchers, and bats.
Saproxylic organisms depend, during part of their life cycle, on dead or dying wood from standing or fallen dead or dying trees