Wildlife watching at night
Swalow photography by Steve Hedges

Wildlife watching at night

Wildlife Watching at Night

Anyone who knows me will tell you that as much as I love to photograph wildlife and our beautiful landscapes, just being in the presence of our country’s wildlife is enough for me as well. Sometimes, it is wonderful to just sit and watch everything our countryside has to offer.

If you really want to see our wildlife in an inspiring way, why not see some nocturnal creatures at night? You don’t have to go far…..your back garden is as good as anywhere to start. At night is when wild animals feed and feel safe. There is so much going on.

Toads and frogs come out to feed on your lawn. If you live near any stretch of countryside, you will see rabbits coming out to graze in the early evening and also the foxes coming out to hunt them. As it gets darker, your eyes will adjust to the light levels and it’s amazing what you can see around you. The Pipistrelle bat is a tiny, reddish-brown bat that is frequently seen over the gardens in the UK. A tawny owl can be found in trees and in ivy.

If you like you can take a guided bat walk at RSPB reserves such as Rainham Marshes and look out for the UK’s many different types of bats. Once you become familiar with them, you will see how different types of bats fly differently and how to identify them accordingly.

And finally, who could forget our wonderful badgers? This nocturnal creature can be seen rambling through the woodlands. I once went on a badger watch and it was absolutely enchanting to watch these beautiful animals foraging and playing.

Remember though, mammals have excellent senses. You must move quietly, talk softly and try not to use a torch. Make sure that the wind is blowing towards you so that the animals do not pick up your scent; and one more thing: dress darkly. Watching the wildlife at night is a great experience.

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