HOME & GARDEN: Top Tips for Spotting Surprising Urban Winter Wildlife in Bristol

SWAROVSKI OPTIK, a world-leading manufacturer of long-range optics, and 19-year-old environmental activist and ornithologist Dr Mya-Rose Craig have joined together to offer exclusive tips for exploring local nature and spotting some surprising urban wildlife in Bristol this Winter...

Bristol is home to some well-known local animals such as its population of urban foxes living in the city’s allotments and gardens, but also some more surprising species such as kingfishers, otters, and peregrine falcons. Mya-Rose is an active and vocal campaigner for protecting nature and wildlife, living in the Chew Valley located just south of Bristol, and her work includes running nature camps for children and teenagers from inner city Bristol with the hope they learn to engage with urban wildlife and nature around their homes…

Mya-Rose has provided top tips for those eager to further explore Bristol’s hidden urban wildlife this Winter including:

  • Badgers, Insects, Butterflies, and Moths in Greenbank
    – In Greenbank, an area where many young people live, there is an overgrown cemetary where you can easily spot the group of badgers living there amongst other fascinating insects. Your best chance of spotting a badger is at dusk as they are nocturnal animals and are rarely seen during the day.
  • Peregrine Falcons and Raven in Durham Downs
    – The stunning plush houses in Durham Downs are home to Peregrine Falcons and Raven that build their nests there. Although patience is key for birdwatching, usually their singing is a great indicator for their hidden location.
  • Kingfishers and Bats in Eastville Park
    – If you visit this inner-city park early, you have a good chance of seeing a Kingfisher. However, once dusk settles, you can spot various bats, including thumb-sized Pipistrelles, smaller Leisler’s, Noctules, and Serotines which are as large as your hand. Just above the river, Daubenton’s can also be seen foraging and grabbing insects from the surface with their feet.
  • Foxes, Badgers, and Deer in St. George and Ashton Court
    – Troopers Hill Nature Reserve, based in St.George is another great hotspot for discovering urban wildlife. It is a hillside, overlooking the River Avon, and serves as a perfect location for spotting deer. When it comes to deer watching, look for signs that the animals leave behind, such as hoof prints, droppings, and hair caught on fences.
  • Frogs and Toads in Fishponds
    – As the ambassador for Froglife, I believe that frogs, toads, and other amphibians need our help to stop the numbers dropping down further. Toads in particular travel up to half a mile to get back to their breeding grounds and are at high risk of being run over on wet nights when they have to cross roads. You can take part in toad patrols in Fishbonds by contacting Avon Reptile and Amphibian Group (ARAG).
  • Hedgehogs in Inner City Bristol
    – Hedgehogs can be found around the gardens of inner city Bristol. If you have a garden, you can create a hedgehog highway by putting a hole in your fence, so that the animals can roam around at night safely.

The world belongs to those who can see beauty.
Experience the moment!

Minerva Studio
Author: Minerva Studio