Wanborough Parish Wild Animals and Insects

The parish of Wanborough is a rural community with a diverse landscape which includes open fields, marshes, woodland, springs, ponds and streams. Each of these habitats attracts different varieties of wild animals. Having a well-developed urban area in the centre of the Parish means we also have animals that benefit from living near to humans, not that they are all welcome!

The Southern half of the parish consists of chalk plains and farm land which is mainly laid to growing crops and grazing for sheep, cattle and horses. The Northern half is split in two as the land drops down the escarpment. The first step down the escarpment is where Upper Wanborough has evolved. The land at this level consists of a band of green sand and the spring line which provides a line of wooded areas, coombes and valleys. As the land drops away to the North the soil becomes more clay like. Lower Wanborough, The Marsh and Horpit nestle within the boggy marshes, streams and natural ponds that form a flood plain for the water that runs down from the chalky plains in the south.

As you explore you will find different species of animal thriving in different parts of the parish, some more difficult to find than others. Wherever you are, you may be lucky;

  • In the day time, you may spot a fox, deer, squirrels and rabbits.
  • At night there are hedgehogs, bats and badgers.
There are plenty of butterflies, moths and insects too. Some of our residents have installed wildlife cameras to help them monitor the visitors to their gardens, other, more patient ones, have managed to take photographs with phones and cameras. As you travel around the parish try to record what you see, take photographs if you can and check them against our nature database to identify if they have already been recorded.

The best places to see our wild animals and insects are around our network of footpaths, on the road verges, in our public green spaces and, if you live in the parish, your own back garden. For wildlife that thrive in specific habitats, check out some of the following places:

  • For marshland insects, pond life and bog loving species check out Warneage Wood, the footpaths around lower Pack Hill, Burycroft, The Marsh, Horpit and Lotmead
  • For woodland species have a wander around Warneage Wood, Church Meadow, Kings Lane, Rodway Open Space, the Lower Rec, the footpath network between Pack Hill, Kite Hill and The High Street and the footpaths running east of The High Street towards Broad Hinton
  • For chalk grassland species take a walk up The Hollow to look across the open fields or further south along the Ridgeway and the footpath network across the open plains.

See below our database of the wild animals we have spotted and the photographs our residents and visitors have been able to take. If you spot something, whether we have identified it already or not, please let us know and if you managed to get a photograph we will gladly add your photographs to the gallery. When out and about remember to follow the Countryside Code and always take your rubbish home with you.

Wanborough Parish Wild Animals and Insects Database

Wanborough Mammals


Badger sets can be found around the boundary of the village. In particular the live in the fields off the High Street, Church Road and The Hollow. Keep your eyes peeled around Badgers Close, as the name suggests, they live around here too. As night time creatures, sadly we are most likely to see them after they have been hit by a car.


We have a thriving population of bats, probably pipistrelles, living in and around St Andrew's Church. They can be seen at dusk flying about the village looking for breakfast.


Foxes are not shy of coming into the central village at night. They are also happy to roam in the daytime so keep your eyes peeled especially if walking along our network of footpaths

Grey Squirrels

We have a thriving Grey Squirrel population, love and hated in equal measure by residents. Often spotted running along or lazing in the branches of the bigger trees in Warneage Wood


Our hedgehogs all live within the boundary of the village, most dominantly amongst the houses off Magdalen Road and The Beanlands, although we also have a family in upper Wanborough. Badgers are the main predators for Hedgehogs and they all live around the outside of the village, keeping our hogs all safely tucked inside.

House Mice

All of our residents that have cats will be very aware that we also have an abundance of mice.


The parishes mole population are predominantly found to the north of the village around Warneage Wood and the allotments. Evidence of these shy creatures comes in the form of the piles of earth they push up as they burrow underground. If you look carefully you will see the soil move as the Moles underneath are busily pushing it out of their tunnels

Muntjac Deer

Not so popular with our gardeners we have a thriving population of Muntjac living to the East of the village that sometimes cross The Highstreet to find food along the escarpment above The Beanlands


We have reports of Otters living to the west of the parish and around The Marsh area. Mainly through evidence of footprints in the mud some residents have lost fish from their ponds.


Wild rabbits can be seen all over the parish along the verge edges in the early mornings. There is a large warren located on Wanborough plain amongst the rubble of ruins from the WW2 Airfield and therefore they can easily be spotted in the fields nearby.


Apparently, we are never more than 3 meters away from a rat, in Wanborough it is not much different to anywhere else. They are there and we have to live with them.

Roe Deer

These graceful creatures inhabit the field network to the South, East and North of the village. They can be seen running through Church Meadow and regularly cross the parish from the south of Church Road to Warneage Green and across Pack Hill

Stoats and Weasels

These little creatures are quite difficult to tell apart at a distance. One or other of them has been spotted living in the fields around Ham Road

Wanborough Amphibians

Common Frog

Found all over the parish Frogspawn can be found in ponds all over the parish

Common Toad

Spotted in Chapel Lane and Kite Hill, these probably live all over the parish

Smooth Newt

Known to reside in gardens off Kite Hill, probably also found elsewhere.

Great Crested Newt

Known to reside in Warneage Wood and The Marsh area of the parish and are a protected species.

Wanborough Butterflies and Moths


Found all around the parish in gardens and all our green spaces from April through to October, here are some of the butterflies we have been able to identify



Chalk Hill Blue

Essex Skipper


Large White

Meadow Brown

Painted Lady


Red Admiral


Small Copper

Small Tortoiseshell

Small White

Speckled Wood


Moths are more challenging to see than butterflies as they mostly fly at night. Keen moth spotters will make use of moth traps to help them catch and record the local population. If you have a go you, photograph them and let us know what you find. You will be surprised at just how colourful they can be.


Dusky Sallow

Elephant Hawkmoth


Oak Processionary Moth

Scarlet Tiger Moth