Questions about Wildlife

On this page you'll find answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about wildlife. If they don't answer your query please feel free to contact us by email or call us on 01905 754 919.

I’ve found something I can’t identify in my house/garden. Can you help me?

I’ve got an injured animal, what can I do with it?

What do I do with the baby bird in my garden?

There’s a bat clinging to the wall of my house. What should I do?

When’s the best time to cut our hedges?

A local is flailing hedges and it’s the middle of the bird breeding season. What should I do?

How do I keep badgers out of my garden/from destroying my lawn?

I’ve found a dead badger, what do I do with it?

I’m worried that I’ve just seen someone digging up a badger sett. What do I do?

I have too much frogspawn. Where can I take it?

How do I humanely get rid of moles in my garden?

Where can we go to see otters?

Where can we go to see wildlife?

How do I go about creating a wildflower meadow?

Could someone give me advice on wildlife in orchards?

Can I get some help and advice to manage my land for wildlife?


I’ve found something I can’t identify in my house/garden. Can you help me?

We don’t have the resources to come out to your home so if possible please send in a photograph and description via email or visit our wildlife identifier page.

I’ve got an injured animal, what can I do with it?

Unfortunately the Trust is not able to take injured animals or offer anything other than very generic advice about animal care and welfare. Please contact Vale Wildlife Rescue Centre, the local animal hospital in Beckford, as they should be able to deal with your query much more successfully. You can contact them on 01386 882 288. Alternatively the RSPCA can be contacted on 0870 5555 999.

If you're in the north of the county and find an injured or sick hedgehog you can contact Willows Hedgehog Rescue, based in Bromsgrove, on 07518 354408.  If you're in the west of the county you can contact Malvern Hedgehog Rescue.

What do I do with the baby bird in my garden?

Baby birds should always be left alone if at all possible. The parents are almost certainly still nearby and will come back to their young so long as they are not disturbed. Where young birds are under immediate threat from cats or other domestic pets it would be sensible to lift them up onto a nearby branch or fence out of harm’s way. If the bird’s condition obviously deteriorates please contact the Vale Wildlife Rescue Centre on the number above.

There’s a bat clinging to the wall of my house. What should I do?

Under normal circumstances it’s best to leave all wild animals alone however if bats are felt to be particularly vulnerable it would be sensible to move them to a more elevated and sheltered position, perhaps under a roof eave or into a tree trunk cavity provided that they can be positioned high up and in such a way as to allow them to fly off of their own accord. All bats are fully protected by law and should not usually be handled without a licence. Further information is available from the Bat Conservation Trust, Natural England or you can contact the Vale Wildlife Rescue Centre.  As with all wild animals, please wear gloves when handling.

When’s the best time to cut our hedges?

Hedges can be extremely valuable for wildlife and in particular for nesting birds and for the berry crop they provide. It is therefore best to cut them in sections (perhaps only half the length or just one side at a time) where they are big or berry-laden. Cutting in late autumn or winter is ideal but earlier in the year can be acceptable depending on circumstance. As a general rule it’s best not to cut them between the end of February and the end of August so as to avoid nesting birds, which are fully protected by law.

A local is flailing hedges and it’s the middle of the bird breeding season. What should I do?

If you are certain that there are nesting birds using the hedge and that their occupied nests are (or have been) damaged then you should contact the police. You can contact them on the non-emergency number 0300 333 3000 if the work has been completed or 999 if it’s ongoing and you consider there to be an immediate risk to an occupied nest.

How do I keep badgers out of my garden/from destroying my lawn?

Badgers are extremely powerful and determined animals and can be very hard to deter once they are used to visiting a site. They are often attracted to gardens because of the high value food available. This can be especially noticeable in dry conditions when invertebrates are hard to find in the wider countryside but can still be available in watered gardens. Deterring badgers can be hard and we would recommend that you seek specialist advice from Natural England . Remember that badgers are fully protected by law and some forms of exclusion can require licensing. It’s also unlawful to stop-up badger holes without an appropriate licence.

I’ve found a dead badger, what do I do with it?

There is no need to remove the animal but it would be helpful if you could send details of the record to the Worcestershire Biological Records Centre

I’m worried that I’ve just seen someone digging up a badger sett. What do I do?

Disturbing a badger sett without a licence is unlawful and if you’re certain that the holes in question were occupied by badgers you should call the police immediately on 0300 333 3000 or 999 if the diggers are still present.

I think I’ve just seen someone hare coursing. What should I do?

Please contact the police on 0300 333 3000 to report the incident if the coursing has stopped or call them on 999 immediately if the coursing is still ongoing.

I have too much frogspawn. Where can I take it?

Frogs produce a lot of eggs to help ensure as many as possible survive the effects of bad weather and predation. So while you may have a lot of frogspawn now it will reduce very quickly, a process which will continue for the tadpoles as they develop into froglets, and only a handful will probably survive to adulthood from the initial thousands of eggs. In urban areas garden ponds are now key habitats for our native amphibians such as frogs and newts. We would therefore advise that unless you really need to remove it, you leave it to develop and take pride that your garden is of good enough quality to be an urban nature reserve. It’s also worth remembering that removing spawn to other ponds can upset their existing ecosystem and has the potential to spread disease around.

How do I humanely get rid of moles in my garden?

Sonic deterrents are available from garden centres and may be quite successful in some circumstances.

Where can we go to see otters?

Otters are now widespread in Worcestershire and can be found on almost all watercourses. However they are very shy and hard to spot so it’s difficult to suggest good locations to try. There have been a number of records at our reserve at Upton Warren and they have been found on the River Avon near Eckington and in several places along the River Severn. Unfortunately the best advice we can give is to spend lots of time (especially at dawn and dusk) out and about near the bigger rivers in the county.

Where can we go to see wildlife?

We have a fantastic range of nature reserves covering the whole county. Please check out our reserves pages for more information.

How do I go about creating a wildflower meadow?

This depends entirely upon context. If creating a small meadow within a formal garden setting, there are some recommended companies which specialise in the production of UK-native wildflower seeds and plug-plants. However, if the planned site is within an agricultural field or in a wider countryside context, then more thought and attention needs to be given in the planning stages to a range of factors: what is the existing grass sward like? (you may need a skilled botanical surveyor to determine this); where is the source of the seed? –(this should always be as local as possible to avoid inappropriate introductions); what techniques will you be using e.g. spreading hay, spreading green hay, slot seeding? With all this in mind we suggest that you email us with details of your query and we will make sure that the right person gets back in touch as soon as possible.

Could someone give me advice on wildlife in orchards?

Worcestershire is famed for its many traditional orchards. Mature and veteran orchard trees provide a multi-layered habitat for a wealth of wildlife – mistletoe, hole-nesting birds such as nuthatch and woodpeckers, bats in the tree cavities, lichens on the branches, rare beetles and often wildflower grasslands in the understorey. Please email us with details of your query and we will make sure that the right person gets back in touch as soon as possible.

Can I get some help and advice to manage my land for wildlife?

In the first instance, take a look the habitat management advice pages of The Wildlife Trust's website.  They've brought together a range of leaflets, information and advice to help you help wildlife.  If you can't find what you need, then please email us with details of your query and we'll make sure that the right person gets in touch wit you.