Ask About Wildlife in Nottingham

Have you had an interesting urban wildlife experience, is there something you can’t identify or do you want to know how to improve your garden for wildlife?

Ask the Wildlife in the City team to help, by filling in this direct form...

I have hedgehogs in my garden, what can I do to help them?

Anonymous

That’s great that you are lucky enough to have hedgehogs in your garden, you must already be doing something right! They like log/brash piles or compost heaps to hide under and hibernate in. They need quite a bit of room, so leaving gaps in fences so the hedgehogs can get between gardens is good too. You can think about leaving food out, but they may well be filling up on the slugs and snails in your garden already. Hedgehog picture © Richard Burkemar

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What’s the difference between a frog and toad?

Parent of a ‘pond dipper’ at Stonebridge pond dipping event.

Good question, and something I think a lot of people don’t feel confident in. They are pretty similar from a distance, but if you get a good look, you will see that frogs have longer legs – and so you will also often see them hopping, whereas toads can’t jump as well, and do more of a run. Frogs also have smoother skin than toads, who have bumpy warty skin. In the Nottingham City area, we are only likely to see common frogs (Rana temporaria) and common toads (Bufo bufo), and a fool-proof way of telling the difference, is by getting up really close and looking into the eyes... frogs have got round pupils, and toads have got horizontal slits as pupils. Also common frogs have a black spot behind their eyes. common toad © Sean Browne

I hear owls hooting in a cemetary every evening at the moment. Do you know what type of owls they are?

Jools McCarthy, May 2012

Hi Jools, what a lovely thing to hear every night! The typical 'twit twoo' type noise is usually made by tawny owls (Strix aluco), and it is very likely it is this bird you that you are hearing - tawny owls are the kind of bird you find in this environment in Nottingham city. Often the noise you are hearing is actually a pair calling and replying to each other. You can read more about tawny owls in our dedicated factsheet on the urban wildlife pages. Tawny owl image © Darin Smith

Are Bats a type of bird?

Ben from Bulwell.

Hi Ben, aren't bats great! Bats are actually mammals, not birds. They are more similar to a mouse or vole than birds. Bats are the only mammal that can fly though! There are lots of different types of bats. In the Nottingham City area, 8 species of bats have been recorded. The most common by far is the adorable pipistrelle bat (shown in the picture). You can find out all about bats by having a look at our factsheet on the Urban Wildlife pages. On spring or summer nights, just after it gets dark - look out of your window to see if bats are visiting your garden to hunt for insects! Pipistrelle bat image © David Dillon

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