Wildlife on the Felbrigg Estate

A beautiful blue Southern Migrant Hawker dragonfly sitting on a reed

Felbrigg's diverse habitats have something to offer the animal lover at every time of day and season.

The early sunlight dances through the morning mist onto the lichen-encrusted boles and twisted shapes of ancient Sweet Chestnuts. Waved Silk-moss snakes down the banks of Lion’s Mouth and in the Autumn flocks of Bramblings enjoy the beech mast feast. Golden Plover rise from the parkland, their cries mingling with the haunting sounds of the swirling Lapwings. The hare runs silently up a glistening furrow, whist the stoat is alert to every tiny squeak, and the Weasel is sometimes seen casually pottering in the car park or ducking and diving in the walled garden.

 
A barn owl in flight

Birds

Barn and Little owls glide silently over the open fields hunting their prey, and there are Tawny owls in the Great Wood. The pastures attract traditional farmland birds such as skylarks, linnets and yellowhammers, whilst the woodlands are the domain of the Great Spotted and Green woodpeckers which are often to be heard hammering rather than seen.

Join us on a bat walk

Bats

Felbrigg supports eight species of bat including widespread species typical of woodland such as Natterer’s bat as well as the rare Barbastelle. The larger species such as Noctule and Serotine can be seen hunting over the park. Whilst the old hollow trees provide excellent natural roost sites for bats, we also give them a helping hand in the form of over 100 bat boxes around the estate. Annual surveys show these are well used with an occupancy rate of over 30% - with up to 20 bats in a box! Many also choose to hibernate in the Ice House.

A muntjac

Deer

Felbrigg is home to four types of deer, Roe, Red, Muntjac and Chinese Water. You are unlikely to spot them on our busier days, but dog walkers visiting the estate earlier in the day often catch a glimpse. They are easily spooked, so please keep your distance.

A dragonfly on the Felbrigg Estate

Dragonflies and Damselflies

Dragonflies and damselflies are some of the most colourful and charismatic insects found in the UK, and in summer, you will find a number of species on the estate. The lake and wetlands at Felbrigg provide excellent habitat for common species, as well as attracting the odd rarity.