Summer wildlife at Roseberry Topping

A speckled wood butterfly pauses on a fern with wings spread

An early morning visit in summer may be rewarded with a sighting of roe deer. Courting males can sometimes been seen chasing females across Roseberry Common in an attempt to win a mate.

Birds busily search for food for their young but can be hard to spot now the trees are in full leaf. Keep an eye on the many bird boxes in the woods and your sure to see blue and great tits returning with caterpillars for their hungry brood.
As the days get warmer many species of butterfly start to emerge. In the woods speckled woods doggedly defend patches of sunlight from other butterflies and even passing walkers. Sunny glades, full of wild flowers attract species such as the orange tip.
Further up Roseberry foxglove and willow-herb fight for space with the dominant bracken. In grassier areas delicate harebell can be found. At the summit look out for wall butterflies basking on the rocks. Here you may also see a fulmar riding the thermals. This seabird usually nests on coastal cliffs but the odd pair often nest on Roseberry’s rock face.
By late summer the heather is out on Newton Moor. Look out for red grouse hiding in this sea of purple.