Our conservation efforts at Wild With Nature mean that our farm has developed into a wildlife haven. Our lakes, wild flowers meadows and bird food margins are the perfect habitat for many wonderful creatures. Although you might not think it, winter is a great time to spot some fantastic animals. Here are out top 10 at the moment.

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  1. Pheasants – wonderfully colourful game birds with long tail feathers. The males are especially colourful with golden brown and black marking on their bodies, dark green heads and bright red skin on their faces. They are UK resident, non migratory birds. Most breeds have been introduced for shooting for sport. The maize crops at Wild With Nature are a perfect feeding habitat for them.

2. Robins – common, red-breasted bird. They are avid singers and very popular to spot around Christmas time. They may look sweet, but they are very territorial. They are native to the UK so easy to spot and aren’t a conservation worry.

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3. Canada Geese – These noisy geese are happy residents of our lakes here at Wild With Nature. They’re very easy to spot with their black neck and head and white patch under their chin. You will almost certainly hear them in the mornings when you stay at The Lakes. Canada geese are very territorial so it’s best not to approach them!

4. Mute Swans – Our flock of swans at Wild With Nature are very popular with guests. Their beautiful white plumage is eye-catching as they congregate on the lake. Watching these magnificent creatures take flight is a wonderful sight to see but also very loud, certainly not mute!

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5. Red Deer – The largest land mammal in the UK. With it’s red-brown fur and cream rump and fantastic antlers, the red deer can stand as tall as 4ft at the shoulder, making him majestic to spot in the wild. The females do not have antlers and are less bulky than the males. In autumn they were rutting but have now split off into bachelor groups for winter.

6. Woodcock – A larger wading bird with short legs and a very long bill. Woodcock tend to eat slightly larger mini-beasts, enjoying worms, beetles, spiders, caterpillars, fly larvae and small snails. Sadly, they are also on the RSPB red list but we continue to spot them on our farm in wooded areas.

Photo: Woodland Trust
Photo: Woodland Trust
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7. Brown Hare – Britain’s fastest land mammal. It looks similar to a rabbit but has much longer legs and ears. The best time to spot hares is at dusk or dawn. Sadly, brown hare populations in the UK have decreased by roughly 80% in the last century due to loss of habitat and changing farming practices. At Wild With Nature we are very conscious of preserving the Hare and Leveret habitats. We grow fields of wild flowers and bird seed for them to safely reside in.

8. Fox – Their orangey-red fur, small pointy ears and a bushy tail make foxes unmistakable. They are very smart and can successfully adapt to many different environments. This is helped by their varied diet. In the countryside they commonly eat small mammals like rabbits, mice and voles as well as worms and fruit but in the cities they opportunistically munch on food waste from humans.

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9. Muntjac are small, stocky deer, only reaching around 50cm at the shoulder. They have long back legs and distinctive black facial markings. The males also have short backwards curving horns and protruding canine teeth. Muntjac are herbivores with the adults having no natural predators so therefore the UK is home to thousands of these deer.

10. Yellow Hammers – striking yellow birds with brown streaks. They are very rare and on the RSPB red list, meaning they are a conservation priority, needing urgent action to increase the population. Like most birds they eat seeds and insects. The wild bird feed and flower meadows at Wild With Nature are the perfect habitat for them. We hope our conservation efforts will help to bulk their numbers.

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We are very lucky to be surround by so many creatures and in a beautiful setting. We would love to share it with you. Come and check it out for yourself.