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Autumn Wildlife Watching in Lancashire

21st October 2021

Red squirrel lancashire

You don’t have to travel far to be in with a chance of spotting beautiful creatures during your autumn break at Moss Wood Caravan Park. Our idyllic location, with woodland walk and nature trail provides plenty of opportunities for wildlife watching – especially in the autumn months.

During October and November many animals begin preparing for the winter, which means they are more active and easier to spot. As you walk around our grounds you might catch a glimpse of deer, red squirrels, bats and plenty of birds. Further afield, there are some wonderful nature reserves and animal attractions to explore. These include, Brockholes, Hest Bank and the WWT Matin Mere Wetland Centre.

Here we list some of the best places to go autumn wildlife watching in Lancashire. We also share some of the species you’re likely to spot.

Roe Deer

roe deer lancashireRoe deer can often be seen wandering around the Lancashire countryside. It’s common to spot them during autumn walks as they forage for food to quell their increasing appetite. In the summer they tend to be solitary, but they gather in larger groups during the autumn and winter months. In October they shed their antlers and begin to grow a new set, making it tricker to distinguish males and females.

You may be lucky to catch the tail end of the rutting season during your stay at Moss Wood. This impressive spectacle occurs when bucks ward off competitors in a bid to gain access to mating females. They display a range of behaviours, many of which are aggressive and should be observed from afar. Bucks can lock antlers, spar and sound a distinctive roar!

Best place to watch: Touring guests and holiday home owners have spotted dear around Moss Wood Caravan Park, so you don’t have to travel far to be in with a chance of seeing these magnificent creatures. Deer can be seen across Lancashire, though they tend to favour areas with a mix of habitats where they can access woodland and grass. The best place to see deer locally is the Forest of Bowland.

Best time of day: Roe deer roam 24 hours a day so can be seen during the day and night. They are most active at dawn and dusk.

Top tips: When you spot deer stay quiet and still to minimise disturbance.

Bird Migration

Pink footed gooseEvery autumn avid birdwatchers flock to Lancashire to observe bird migration in progress. This special time of year is one of the most important events in the birding calendar – with birds travelling huge distances in anticipation of the winter ahead. Some species travel south in search of warmer climes, while others stop in Lancashire as part of their journey north. Regardless of the transit route, this mass migration affords enthusiasts the chance to see species that are usually found abroad.

Lancashire has a fantastic reputation among birders with some excellent venues to watch this annual event. The wetlands of the North West, including the Ribble Estuary and Morecambe Bay attract wading species including, redshank, curlew and pink-footed geese. Other hot spots welcome migrant raptors. Peregrines, hen harriers and merlins have been spotted at Brockholes and RSPB Leighton Moss.

Best place to watch: Wetland areas along the North West Coast are worth a visit, particularly those away from built up areas. Holiday park guests are also likely to spot migrating geese in the Moss Wood fields as they feed and prepare to migrate. We’re already seeing huge flocks flying overhead as they get ready!

Best time of day: As the saying goes – ‘the early bird catches the worm’, so we recommend heading out early to secure your spot!

Top tips: Bring binoculars and a camera to capture some of the species. Pop into RSPB centre’s to learn more about what you should look out for.

Red Squirrels

red squirrel eating

Red squirrels have been spotted in the woodland at Moss Wood Caravan Park! These elusive creatures are incredibly rare and seldom seen in other parts of the UK. Unfortunately, they have been driven to the brink of extinction by non-native grey squirrels. This means it’s even more special if you encounter them in the wild!

Autumn is one of the best times of year to look out for red squirrels. As the days get shorter and the temperature drops they tend to come down into the undergrowth to forage and hide nuts for winter. Keep your eye peeled for a flash of their distinctive russet-coloured fur and tufty ears as you make your way around our park.

Best place to watch: Red squirrels like forest areas and are particularly fond of hazel nuts. They are most commonly found in Scotland, but there are small populations throughout the Lake District and the North West.

Best time of day: Red squirrels should be active throughout the day.

Top tips: Our top tip is to keep looking at bird feeders. Red squirrels can be incredibly sneaky and enjoy a readily available meal!

Starling Murmuration

starling murmuration

Photo credit: Airwolfhound, Flickr

Starling murmuration is one of autumn’s most impressive sights and a must see during your touring holiday in Lancashire. Watch in awe as thousands of starlings perform acrobatic displays in the skies above, as they work together to ward off predators, increase their body temperature and communicate with one and other. As the birds dart left to right they create some spectacular shapes and patterns, which are fantastic to photograph. The noise of so many birds in one place is deafening and a fantastic experience not to be missed.

Brockholes is one of the best places locally to see this natural phenomena. Head to The Lookout on the Guild Wheel Path just before dusk and wait in anticipation of this fantastic event. You may have to wait a while for the birds to emerge from their roost and culminate in the skies above. It typically lasts around an hour and is most common in late October and early November.

Best place to watch: Murmuration doesn’t happen in the same place each year, so you’ll need to ask one of the RSPB centres for more information. They will be able to advise you where to go.

Best time of day: Arrive at your chosen location 30 minutes to an hour before dusk. Wrap up warm, it can get chilly as the sun goes down!

Top tips: Be patient and don’t give up!


Moss Wood Caravan Park is an award-winning holiday park near Lancaster. We have a selection of touring pitches and privately owned caravan holiday homes available to buy – ideal for an autumn break in the North West. Make the most of a range of facilities during your stay including a private course fishing lake, well stocked shop and two adventure playgrounds. Search availability and book online or call to speak with one of our friendly team.

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