The UK has some well-known wildlife favourites; badgers, squirrels and foxes are just a few. We’re lucky enough to have some lesser-known creatures living in the woodlands around our campsites too, that you may be able to see during your camping stay with us.
If you pitch up on one of our campsites, you really are going to be in a unique position to spot some of the UK’s endangered animals. Here’s a few you might be able to see on your walks through some of the forests and national parks our campsites sit within. As always though, we ask that you’re respectful of the areas these animals inhabit because it’s their home, we’re just visiting. Keep dogs on leads at all times if they’re permitted on your campsite and stick to the paths wherever possible. Happy wildlife-spotting!
Cairngorms National Park A trip to our Glenmore campsite in the Cairngorms National Park will launch you smack bang into one of the most vital wildlife preservations in the country. 25 percent of our native, threatened species live here, so you have a chance of coming across something you may have never seen before. And what might that be, you ask? There be tigers (no, really!) The Cairngorms National Park is home to Scotland’s only wildcat, the aptly named ‘highland tiger’. The gorgeous, spindle-whiskered, bushy-tailed feline is protected under EU law, but its numbers have dwindled. Now one of the most endangered animals in Britain, some estimate there are only a few dozen pure wildcats in existence now. They’ve roamed Britain for the last two million years but habitat loss, disease and other felines are in danger of wiping out the highland tiger forever. Interbreeding with both their domestic and feral feline cousins is contributing to the loss of the pure breed.
Now, we can’t guarantee that you’ll spot the illusive predator during your stay with us but they’re most probably watching you whilst you’re adventuring through the area. If you are lucky enough to spot one, it’ll be a sight you’ll treasure forever.
Watch the skies for golden eagles The Cairngorms National Park is also home to several nesting sites of the famed golden eagle. In fact, most of the mountains in the park have been declared as an area that is of great European importance for the eagle. There aren’t any specific areas recommended for seeing the bird but if you’re spending time in the uplands, you may be lucky enough to spot one soaring in the sky above. With a wingspan of up to 2 metres, you’ll know when you've seen one.
The New Forest With 10 campsites in the New Forest, pitching up at any of our sites puts you right in the heart of the action. The New Forest is buzzing with life, from reptiles to wild donkeys, you’re sure to spot some of these animals whilst on your travels.
Special deer and pony breeds The New Forest, sandwiched between Portsmouth and Southampton, has been conserved since the reign of William I in 1079. He decreed that pastures should be kept as a fresh and thriving hunting ground. While modern appetites have thankfully overtaken that agenda, the woods are a haven for five species of deer, two of which can’t be found outside of the UK.
Red deer are the biggest; the muntjac strain, meanwhile, originally escaped from Woburn Zoo, and they’re incredibly cute – tiny, with a bark that can sound for 20 minutes straight. Whether you manage to find these elusive creatures or not, there are hundreds of New Forest ponies dotted about the areas surrounding our campsites. Read all about the New Forest Ponies.
Look out for pigs in the autumn Releasing domestic pigs into a forest goes all the way back to the time of William the Conqueror and is known as Pannage. During autumn once all of the acorns, chestnuts and other nuts have fallen from the trees, the pigs are released to gobble them all up off the forest floor. The pigs can be found in the forest from late September and are out for a minimum of 60 days. It’s a mesmerising sight, seeing pigs roaming the forest so if you camp with us during the autumn make sure you keep your eyes peeled.
The Snowdonia National Park Our Beddgelert campsite in Snowdonia is surrounded by stunning scenery, inhabited by wonderful wildlife.
A bunch of beautiful birds Birdwatchers will be in their element at Beddgelert. The Welsh paradise boasts one of the largest national parks in Britain. In the heat of the morning you’ll hear a wonderful chorus of birdsong, leading you to all manner of feathered critters in the treetops and along the coastal cliffs.
The cormorant, for instance, is a black-water bird, prone to holding its impressive wings up to dry after a dip. It has a thin, reptilian beak that can tackle significantly-sized fish. Moving further inland, the forest has become a saviour to ospreys, once thought to have totally vanished from these isles more than a century ago. A small group has been spotted in the Snowdonian canopy, and their nests are a great tourist attraction.
And we haven’t even begun to explore redstarts, willow-warblers, falcons and oystercatchers… We’re leaving those surprises for you! It’s a good feeling, isn’t it, to know that British wildlife has a character and diversity to match other territories around the world? It’s easy to forget the landscapes and wildlife that can be found outside of the big cities.
Choose Camping in the Forest for an unforgettable experience with family or friends. Browse through our sites to find the camping adventure you’ve been waiting for…
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