Garden News

Mammals - 3 July 2017

P1240541It's always a treat to come across a mammal when walking around the Gardens: birds, bees, grasshoppers, butterflies are all expected and easy to see. But coming across this young fawn (left) lying up in its "form" in the long grass was completely unexpected. It's a young roe deer, but it is late in the season for it still to be lying up. Fortunately, it didn't get disturbed. Adult deer will leave their offspring in a safe place during the day when they go off to feed, and the young are programmed to stay still as a defence against predators. But beware of the long grass: it is full of deer ticks, as I discovered.

 

P1240552Another animal taking advantage of the fine weather was a big dog fox, lying at the edge of the picnic lawn, sunbathing in the afternoon warmth. The lawn is quite wide and the path is a fair distance away; the fox had its eyes open and was watching the people walking along in a very relaxed way. Even when several people stopped and looked at it through binoculars it made no move and didn't appear to be disturbed. It's often a matter of keeping your eyes open as you walk around; it's quite surprising what you see.

‘What could be better on a trip down to the New Forest than a walk in a beautiful garden, a ride on a steam train (which my grandson adored!) and a chance to see the Beaulieu river close up? A memorable day out and a gem of a place’

Rob Gregory, Oxford

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