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Tatton Park
Cycling in parkland by George Littler Autumn in the Parkland by Clemency West butterfly in parkland - Richard Dixon Anglers at Tatton by David Dukesell Beech Avenue by Adrian Bell Tatton Mere by David DukesellBeech Walk by Mark WilliamsonBellowing Deer on a misty morning, Mark WilliamsonDeer in front of the Mansion, Mark Williamson

Wildlife News

Summer 2014Brown Long Eared Bat photo courtesy of Steve Parker

With its combination of mixed woodland, open water and parkland Tatton provides great habitat for bats. We were always aware that at least five species were present here; Brown Long Eared, Noctule, Daubenton as well as both Common and Soprano Pipistrelle. But the Ranger team have always been convinced that there must more than five species here. So this year we have linked up with the South Lancashire Bat Group who have kindly agreed to undertake some survey work for us.

Over the summer they will be in the park two evenings per month, during which time they will conduct surveys using very sophisticated bat detectors which can pick out individual species. The group are also going to do some trapping using Harp Traps, which are specifically designed to catch bats.

The evening surveys began in April and so far the results have been really exciting! The detector surveys are suggesting we have all three species of Myotis bats, (which are Whiskered, Brandts and Natterers) as well as another species of pipestrelle (Nathusius’). There was even a possibility that a Serotine was heard, a very rare bat in Cheshire. Bat detectors are really useful tools, but the only way to properly identify a bat is ‘in the hand’. So far we have had one evening of trapping and managed to catch 18 bats, which was the most they’d ever caught. These were mostly Soprano pipistrelles, but also Common pipestrelle, Daubenton and also, excitingly, two Whiskered bats which confirmed their presence in Tatton. The major prize was the final catch of the night, which was a Nathusius’ pipistrelle, a migrant species just beginning to establish itself in the UK and hence quite an unusual find. So that is two new species we can definitely add to the Tatton list and hopefully another two or three more to come .

Many species of flower can be seen in the parkland, around the fish ponds area you may glimpse an orchid or two. The Common Spotted Orchid is recognisable by having dark spots on the leaves. There are only a few plants in this area but numbers are increasing. This species can grow up to 60cm in height and is happy growing on calcareous soils. The flowers can range in colour between light pink to light purple, the petals can have darker streaks as well as dark spots on the tip. If you take a stroll to the gate at the back of the Old Hall looking over to the right of the track, you can see many plants growing happily within the undergrowth.       

During the Summer months the birds at Tatton are busy rearing young. Our resident pair of Ravens have again been successful and Green Woodpeckers appear to be doing well. The number of nests in Tatton’s Heronry has reduced over the years, this year we are down to four nests. This is a trend occurring across the country. One of the first Summer migrants back in the county again proved to be a Sand Martin on Tatton Mere on the 12th March. A pair of Egyptian Geese have become residents as are Mandarin Ducks, both these species are introduced but have feral populations. Other interesting  bird species seen recently include, Goosander, Common Tern and Red Kite. Sadly, the Mute Swans that were nesting at the end of Tatton Mere have had their nest destroyed. One of the Six eggs were found in nearby Boathouse Wood therefore suggesting human interference.

The Ranger team will be running a series of Summer Deer walks Summer deer walks
focusing on the calving season and providing opportunity to learn more about our famous deer. August is an active month for our younger visitors offering a Boredom Buster’s Nature day, hunting for mini beasts in the parkland ponds and woodlands and taking a trailer ride to get a close look at the deer. There will also be two children’s cycling events exploring farmland trails and woodland tracks.

Tatton’s deer walks recently won ‘best tourism experience’ at Cheshire’s tourism awards, an award the Ranger team are extremely proud of. Tatton has now also been named ‘Large Visitor Attraction of the Year’ winner for 2014 in England, a very prestigious award which we are all highly delighted to win.

For further details on any of the activities and to book on an event, please contact our education team on 01625 374428.

Compiled by Tatton’s Ranger team

Summer Deer Walks in 2014

Why not join our Rangers on one of our evening Summer deer walks, taking place in June, It's a perfect time of year and a great way to get out and about and explore the parkland observing the deer in their natural habitat.

Call 01625 374428 to enquire or email tattoneducation@cheshireeast.gov.uk
(Booking in advance is essential, price includes park entry)

Free Parkland Explorer Booklet - Compiled by Tatton’s ranger team

Download your own copy of the Parkland Explorer Booklet (PDF, 1.5MB), designed by Tatton's Rangers!

Learn how to be an expert tracker, twitcher and observer of all the beautiful, natural elements of Tatton Park. This is a fantastic way for children and their families to explore the Parkland, with 16 pages of fun activities. The booklet can be downloaded here (link through to parkland explorer page). You can also pick up a free copy of this booklet i

Volunteering with the Rangers

For further information on volunteering, please contact the ranger team on 01625 374414 or e-mail: TattonRangers@cheshireeast.gov.uk

The work undertaken by all our volunteers is extremely valuable and much appreciated, allowing us to undertake a wide variety of tasks and projects.

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