Winter on the Ightham Mote estate

View of countryside and estate gateway from the top of the estate

Winter brings an opportunity for estate walkers to spot those hardier UK birds, wildlife, trees and plants. It's a busy time for the Ightham Mote ranger team, who will be hard at work with their woodland tasks.

Birds

Whether you are visiting the garden or are out and about across our estate, look out for robins, wrens, goldfinch, great spotted woodpeckers, nuthatches, blue tits, great tits, blackbirds and thrushes.

Ightham Mote estate robin
A robin in an estate tree at Ightham Mote
Ightham Mote estate robin

Wildlife

Walkers on the estate will find hardy grey squirrels in Scathes Wood and throughout our woodland areas; eagle-eyed visitors may also spot our resident albino grey squirrel.

A rare albino grey squirrel on the estate
An albino grey squirrel in a tree on the estate
A rare albino grey squirrel on the estate

Trees, plants and flowers

Even if winter temperatures plummet, you will still be able to enjoy our yew trees, holly and mistletoe; the rare green hellebore also grows close to the path on our green walk.

Get into the spirit of Christmas with bunches of mistletoe
Mistletoe
Get into the spirit of Christmas with bunches of mistletoe

Ranger activity

For our rangers and their volunteers, winter is one of the busiest times of the year - it is essential that any woodland work is completed before birds begin nesting in the trees on the estate in spring. There is always plenty of coppicing and important tree safety work. Wherever possible, the coppiced wood from the estate is used for fencing, benches and seats, edging steps and defining paths.