We are located a stone's throw from the River Wye
Near Rhayader & the Elan Valley in the Wild heart of wales!
Mammals in the upper Wye/Elan Valley area
Whether you are staying in your own Static or touring caravan, Glamping in our Native American Tipi or renting our luxury static caravan, Doldowlod Caravan Park is a great base for wildlife lovers.This really is a wildlife hotspot so bring your binoculars and walk quietly and prepare to see a wide variety of native mammals.
We have such a rich variety in the Rhayader/Elan
Valley area and the only inland mammals not recorded are the harvest mouse,
dormouse, fallow deer and red squirrel.
Grey Squirrels are common and easy to see, they come
originally from America
and are larger and more adaptable than the native Red Squirrel. There are no
records of reds since the 1960s.
foxFoxes mostly live alone and usually adapt old rabbit or
badger burrows into earths which are used for shelter and for females to raise
Deer are uncommon but there have been recent sightings of muntjack and roe in the Rhayader area.
muntjack deer roe deer
Stoats and Weasels are all
members of the weasel (mustelid) family. Stoats and Weasels are often confused, both are chestnut
brown with a white belly but Stoats are larger, with a black tipped tail and
the line where the brown fur meets the white fur is straight. Weasels have a
shorter, untipped, tail and a wavy line between the brown and white.
Polecats are uncommon in the UK outside of Wales and its bordering counties but
are sighted here and the population is spreading. They are the
wild cousins of domestic ferrets with which they will interbreed.
American Mink (none native mammal) escaped from fur farms mostly during the
1960s and 1970s, they bred in the wild and spread into the area in the late
1980s. They are found near to water where they prey on birds, small mammals and
fish. Ground nesting ducks suffer from predation as the mink take eggs, chicks
and adult birds.
Badgers are widepread and live in setts as family
groups. As well as the main sett which is always in use, they may have other
smaller setts in their territory which they only use occasionally.
otter water vole
Otters occur frequently on the River Wye which they use as
fishing grounds for their favourite brown trout.
Water voles numbers have reduced nationally in streams and
rivers where mink occur but they are successfully breeding at Gilfach Reserve near Rhyader thanks to an active conservation scheme.
Moles are surprisingly common here both in the Wye and Elan Valley areas and even up on the highest
Hedgehogs are uncommon on the Elan Estate but more common around Rhayader. Their main natural
predator in Britain
is the Badger.
Rabbits are widespread but uncommon because they have many
predators here including foxes, polecats, buzzards and kites.
Brown Hares are rare but have been sighted here last
year and in previous years.
shrews are insectivores with very large appetites, they
need to eat every 3-4 hours. We have 3 types of shrew, the Common, the Pygmy
and the Water Shrew which has been found at Dol-y-mynach.
pigmy shrew water shrew
are common especially in broadleaved woodlands on
the Elan Estate and around Rhayader. Theyprovide an important source of food for Tawny owls.
Voles: Bank, Field and Water Voles. Field or Short-Tailed
Voles are an important source of food to many upland animals and birds of prey.
Changes in their numbers can have severe effects on their predators.
field vole bank vole
daubentons bat long eared bat
Bats: Whiskered, Natterer's, Daubenton's, Pipistrelle,
Noctule and Long-eared Bats have been recorded on the Elan Estate. Gilfach tunnel, just outside of Rhayader is a noted bat reserve of national importance. Roost sites
include tree hollows, natural caves, mines, houses, bird hides, railway tunnels
and bat boxes. Pipistrelles can be seen in Elan Village
feeding on flying insects around the street lights in summer, we also see them on site here in Doldowlod and also of course on the
Gilfach Nature Reserve. Daubenton's bats occur close to water, and often feed
on insects over the reservoirs, especially Caban coch.
Mice and Brown Rats are rare here.
housemouse brown rat
Thanks to yahoo image gallery for photos