Top tips for spotting wildlife at Charlecote

Here are our handy hints to increase your chances of spotting hidden nature and help you to get the most out of your wildlife-watching adventures at Charlecote. There's so much here at any time of year and we'd like our visitors to be able to make the most of this beautiful part of the Warwickshire countryside.

    Be prepared

    Child with binoculars at Charlecote Park

    Bring binoculars – you’ll see more if you keep your distance.
    Bring a magnifying glass
    – bugs, flowers and lichen are just as interesting as the big things. Be careful on a sunny day though – magnifying the sun’s rays onto wildlife can kill it.
    Bring a camera
    or notebook and pencil.
    Do your homework
    with a little research on the web or at your local library.
    Pick up a pocket guide
    – our shop at Charlecote and the National Trust online shop have plenty to choose from.

    Keep a low profile

    Fallow deer in the parkland at Charlecote

    Don't get seen – bright clothing can alert deer or other animals to your presence; even your shadow can disturb bugs and insects.
    Don't be heard – waterproof clothing can be quite noisy so you may need to keep still for a while before creatures are brave enough to show themselves.
    Don't get smelt – suntan lotion in particular can be strong, you may find an unscented type is better.
    Get comfy – bring a rug so you don’t get a damp, numb bum.

    Use your senses

    Child with daisy on cedar lawn at Charlecote Park

    Keep a good look out – many creatures large and small are excellent at camouflage. Droppings or flattened grass tracks can lead to hiding places.
    Listen very carefully – aircraft from the nearby airfield can be distracting but birdsong at a different pitch can always be heard.
    Think like wildlife – they look for shade under the ancient trees in the parkland on a sunny day and come to drink from the river when the weather is dry. Wet weather brings bugs and worms to the surface and birds make the most of this. Some birds fly low for insects while others perch high to see their prey and feed on berries in the autumn.
    Take an expert - join one of our guided walks and talks or special events.

    Care for the natural world

    Visitors in the parterre at Charlecote

    Keep your distance - it’s best to not to get too close to wildlife and scare animals and birds. You’ll have a better view of anything that’s not running or flying away and you may frighten adult birds or animals away from their young.
    Conserve what you enjoy for others to enjoy, take your litter home and share what you’ve spotted with other visitors.
    Get involved - volunteer with us.

    Memories are magical

    A robin alights on a bench in Charlecote

    Bring a notebook and jot down what you’ve seen and heard or try a quick sketch.
    Keep your camera handy and remember to keep the sun behind you for a better picture. A flexible tripod can be very useful.

With a little patience and perhaps just a pair of binoculars, you'll be rewarded with a wealth of wildlife at any time of year at Charlecote.