Animals, birds and insects

Hatchland's bats

Bat survey

Natterer's bat hanging from a tree trunk © Bat Cons. Trust/Hugh Clark

Following a recent survey by the landscape agency it has been discovered that Hatchlands is home to ten species of bat. It is exceptional to record such diversity of species and large numbers of bats within one site. We can be considered of national significance for our bats.

Which species?

The nationally rare Bechstein's bat © NTPL/Bat Cons. Trust/Hugh Clark

It's notable that both the nationally rare Barbastelle and Bechstein's bats were recorded here as well as the locally rare Serotine bat. There are also records of Noctule, Common and Soprano Pipistrelles, Brandt’s, Daubenton’s, Natterer’s and Long-eared bats here.


The nationally rare Barbastelle bat © NTPL/Bat Cons. Trust/Hugh Clark

The number of different bat species here indicates the variety and high quality of roosting habitat and also the hedgerows that our bats use as woodland ‘highways’. If you’d like to see more come along to our bat walk in August with our expert, we’ll even provide you with a bat detector.

Woodland mammals

There are many common wooodland mammals that live on the parkland and in the woodland here. If you're lucky you might spot Roe Deer, foxes and squirrels, with badgers appearing in the evenings.

Cattle on the parkland

  •  © Sue Streeter

    The Dexters

    A small herd of Irish horned cattle called Dexters are kept on sections of the parkland.

  • A herd of Dexter cattle graze on areas of the parkland © Dan Bennett

    The breed

    Dexters are a dual purpose breed which means they can be used for meat or for milk.

  • A family of Dexters © Sue Streeter

    Why they're here

    The herd is owned by our tenant grazier and we use them to keep the grass down in the parkland.

Birds of prey

There are three types of owl here including Barn Owls © Steve Wrightson

There are three types of owl here including Barn Owls

Buzzards, sparrowhawks, kestrels and hobbys all visit here and if you're very lucky there is an occasional visit from a Red Kite. We also have Barn Owls, Tawny Owls and Little Owls here, we’ve recently put up owl boxes to help them breed.


Three Canada Geese treat us to a fly-by demonstration © Dan Bennett

Three Canada Geese treat us to a fly-by demonstration

Sheepwash Pond, near the parkland entrance provides the perfect environment for wildfowl. You can see Canadian, Grey-Lag and Egyptian Geese here as well as herons and kingfishers. There are several types of duck and the occasional swan too.

Other birdlife

A woodpecker pokes his head out for a photo opportunity © Dan Bennett

A woodpecker pokes his head out for a photo opportunity

There are upwards of forty species of bird here. You can see Green, Great-Spotted and Lesser-Spotted woodpeckers and if you listen carefully you might be able to track down a cuckoo.

Dead-wood invertebrates

It was discovered that Hatchlands was home to a number of rare and nationally scarce species of invertebrates. This survey identified us as an area of national importance, one of the top ten sites in England.

Butterflies and other insects

Our wildflower meadow provides a home for a number of species of butterflies and moths. It is also an extremely important resource for bumble bees, particularly late in the year when the Red Clover arrives.

Amphibians and reptiles

Common frogs and toads are frequently seen around the two ponds here. Elsewhere you can see common lizards and sand lizards and you might catch a glimpse of a grass snake or an adder.