Published: 17 May 2024

One of the very best things about taking a walk in the country is all the flora and fauna you might spot. And at this time of year, there is plenty of wildlife to be found in and around Holker Hall. So, grab your walking boots, dust off your binoculars, and join us on a wildlife spotting extravaganza!

5 Tips to Help You Spot More Wildlife This Summer

Know what you’re looking for

It’s easier to spot wildlife of any kind if you know what you might see. So, before you set out on a hike, do some research. This will give you a better idea of the direction you should be setting your gaze. So, as we move into summer in Cumbria, for example, you stand a good chance of seeing, red deer (especially in the Holker deer park!), red squirrels, adders, and even otters. As for birdlife, some of the most exciting species are osprey, curlew, and peregrine falcon. As well as a whole variety of garden birds, such as green woodpeckers, hawfinch, and spotted flycatcher. The list of insects is considerably longer!

Dress sensibly

Most of the UK’s wild creatures are pretty shy. Even those used to people don’t want to get too close. So, it makes sense not to advertise your presence. You’re much more likely to see wildlife if you wear more muted and natural shades of clothing. And select shoes that aren’t only comfortable, but don’t make much noise when you walk.

Stop, look, and listen

As well as the rules of the road, those are an excellent behaviour guide for wildlife spotting. If you want to see wild creatures, you need to give yourself time. So, forget about speed, and take things slowly. Look around for signs of animals as you go – droppings, paw prints, snake skins, and owl pellets. And listen to the sounds around you – something that is particularly important if you’re interested in spotting birds. Many of the birds that you see at this time of year have distinctive calls. Whether the keening whistle of the red kite or the distinctive call of the cuckoo.

Think about the conditions

Just like you, wild animals react to the weather. So, on hot days, you may find squirrels and toads resting in the shade. After a storm, birds can be more active, searching for worms drawn to the surface. While badgers and foxes are more likely to come out at dusk. So, be aware of the conditions, and plan accordingly.  

Be respectful

Spotting wildlife can be incredibly exciting, but you don’t want to upset the creatures. So, when you do spot something, whether it’s an owl or a dragonfly, keep your distance. Don’t try to engage with it. And never try to touch it. The only things you should be taking from your wildlife walk are memories and photos.

The British summertime provides so many opportunities to enjoy the natural world. And Cumbria is rich with wildlife. It just takes a little patience and research, and a willingness to let nature do its thing.

Looking for somewhere beautiful to go wildlife spotting this summer? Come visit Holker Hall.