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February News

An update from Lindy – our Tour Guide Manager and Conservationist

February is statistically the coldest month of the year, and as the days slowly but surely begin to lengthen, there are new signs of life on the estate.

We know spring is on the way when we start to see the first signs of flora. Snowdrops will begin pushing their white heads through the woodland undergrowth ahead of the daffodils and primroses. A carpet of pretty wood anemones will also greet you if you take a walk through our woodland this month. These beautiful flowers spread very slowly, as little as six feet in a century, an indication of how ancient these woods are.

The pheasants are ubiquitous on the estate this time of year. The close season that begins in February allows them to roam further afield with no threat from predating humans.

Although there can be snow at this time of year, there are often sunny days too and in sheltered areas, it is possible to see a solitary bumblebee or butterfly which has bravely left its winter hiding place in search of nectar.

Our ponds will be most active at this time of year. Amphibians are starting their annual mating ritual and frogspawn are showing clearly under the surface. The adult frogs may have spent the winter in the mud at the bottom of our ponds, but can now be spotted in the woodland, where they also hibernate in our woodpiles and in ruts under leaves. The frogs emerge on a mild February day to return to the water when the breeding season commences.

February has surprisingly much to offer on our Estate and with increasingly lengthening light and just 28 days, it is a shame to miss it.

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