10 Original British Natives

September 3, 2016


The badger is considered an iconic species of the British countryside. A male badger is a boar, a female is a sow, and a young badger is a cub. A badger's home is called a sett and badger colonies are often called clans. (Wikipedia)




Yes, the hedgehog do get their name based on the fact they frequent hedges in the countryside.  Their diet consists of insects, snails, frogs, toads, snakes, berries...wait!  toads and snakes?  yes, supposedly, if given the chance they'll eat anything.




The beautiful red squirrel usually lives about 6 years and their young are called kittens.  Their population has been declining in the UK and expected to only have about 120,000 with most living in Scotland.  




The Red Deer is the largest land mammal in the UK with the smaller of the species in the Scottish open hills and the larger in the lowland English wood.  Red deer are ruminant, having a four-chambered stomach.  Their population numbers in the UK are very healthy.




The Stoat is a type of weasel and can be found all over Britain.  Their main meal is rabbit and their population is usually linked to the health of the rabbit population.  Though in the past few years there is concern that their population has been affected by eating poisoned rats and mice. 




There is estimated to be 35-40 million moles in the UK.  This is millions more than all the other animals on this list.   And by the way, moles are not blind, they're just light sensitive.  The mole is a native species to the UK and is the only pest not introduced by man.





The British mountain hare is found mostly in Scotland and are quite a solitary mammal.  While their tail is white all year round and the tips of their ears are black the rest of their body changes from white in the winter to brown in summer.


Andy Sands / Naturepl.com


There are several different varieties of shrews and Britain represents three of those; common, pygmy and water.  They are tiny, eat only insects and have a cute pointed snout.   They are protected and you have to have a license in order to trap them.  



 photo wikipedia


Pine Martins are members of the weasel family.  They climb trees where they catch and eat squirrels, mice, nuts and berries.  They are quite elusive and unfortunately their numbers are dwindling as well.





The Scottish Wildcat is very elusive and stay away from humans.  There's a Scottish wildcat website where you can report sightings.  It can often be difficult to tell if you've seen the wildcat, a domestic tabby or hybrid of the two.  But one way to tell is the are the thick dark black bands on the wildcat's tail.  


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