Get close to nature at Cardinham Woods, where you can spot some of England’s special wildlife. Forestry England has compiled the top five species to keep your eyes peeled for this summer – but be quick before they flutter or soar away!
1, Buzzard – the Buzzard is the UK’s most common bird of prey, often seen soaring gracefully and calling out above the treetops. See if you can catch a glimpse of Cardinham’s resident buzzard, named Whitey by the rangers for his paler-than-usual plumage.
2, Silver-washed Fritillary – a large and striking butterfly that particularly likes broadleaf woodland glades and rides, especially those with oak. Look out for it pausing to feed on bramble.
3, Siskin – a small, striking bird that enjoys the forest bird feeding area. The Siskin population at Cardinham Woods is being studied to learn how many of the birds are resident and how many are winter arrivals from Europe.
4, Speckled Wood – look out for the Speckled Wood flying in areas of dappled sunlight or perching in a pool of sunlight ready to soar after any territory intruders.
5, Meadow Brown – fairly common in Cornwall, the Meadow Brown is one of the only UK butterflies that can be seen flying in dull weather so there is a fair chance of sighting one during a classic British summer!
All of these species can be spotted along the Lady Vale Walk, suitable for pushchairs, wheelchairs, and mobility vehicles. The 1.7 mile walk meanders along Cardinham Water to an ancient clapper bridge before returning, or visitors can take a short cut for a shorter walk.