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Wildlife

From the everyday (think rabbits, foxes, badgers, butterflies and bees) to the rare and endangered, Sacrewell’s land teems with wildlife.

We work closely with our tenant farmers, Riverford Organic Farms, to protect our wildlife – they rely on this complex ecosystem for the pollination of their fruit and veg and share our commitment to farming in tune with nature.

Our most unusual residents are the red kites, which were reintroduced to the area around Fineshade Wood as part of one of the world’s longest-running protection programmes. Twitchers come from all over the country in the hope of spotting this graceful bird of prey, with its red-brown plumage and deeply forked tail. Ours are among 1,600 breeding pairs in the UK and numbers are rising.

From our bird hide or one of our picnic areas on the banks of the mill pond, you can also see a wealth of wildfowl, including Canada geese, swans, moorhens and ducks, which live on the banks and the island in the middle of the pond.

Take our wildlife trail, one of our rambles or our seasonal scavenger hunt and you can see the burrows and pathways the animals have created. Look for their droppings on the paths, listen out for crickets in the long grass and keep your eyes peeled for insects such as ladybirds.

Wherever you walk, you’ll be taking a trip back into our rural past, when most people lived in the country, grew their own food and understood the work and commitment it takes to put food on the table every day.