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Wildlife & Plants In the UK


January brings the snow, makes our feet and fingers glow…


There is still much wildlife to be seen during January. Birds in woodlands are easier to see as there are no leaves on the trees.  Our Wetland centres and estuaries are full of winter migrants feeding up ready for their migration back to their nesting grounds.


What to See Where to See and comment What it looks like
Wildfowl, ducks and Geese

See our Geese pages

Barnacle Goose 

Brent Goose 

Pink Footed Goose 

White Fronted Goose 

Canada Goose 

Greylag Goose 

In wetlands, coasts and estuaries you will find huge flocks that are over-wintering in here and feeding on tiny worms and shellfish, especially at low tide.



Picture is of a Canada Goose


Mute Swan

Whooper Swan

Bewick Swan

Large flocks of swans can usually be seen during the winter at Slimbridge WWT in Gloucestershire when they come in for they evening feeds at around 4pm.

Swan Upping - The annual Census of the population of Mute Swans on the River Thames taking place during 3rd week of July each year.

Locations to see & photograph swans in the UK

Avocets flock into our wetlands and estuaries to feed on the mini wildlife. They move with the tide to feed on the exposed mud in the estuaries

Starlings create a particularly dramatic – and noisy – display as they flock in vast numbers that appear to be in perfect synchrony.  
Redwings  Having flown in for the winter they will be feeding in the countryside off hedgerows and under fruit trees.
Black-tailed Godwits    


In the countryside feeding on the red and colourful berries in the hedgerow. If you're lucky enough you may seem them in your garden.
Waxwings Can be seen foraging for berries from wild hedgerow to urban gardens  
Song Thrush May sing on sunny days, and for those of you lucky enough to have bird feeds will see them visit for the winter sustenance.  
Blackbirds Will be visiting your garden feeders to stock up for the coming breeding season  
Great Tits    
Robin Seen in our gardens all year round, but this month you may see more than just one as they start to pair up.
Rook Starting to pair up and repairing their nests high in the woodland canopy ready for the breeding season.  
Hedge Sparrow    
Grey Squirrels A walk in the forest up in trees you may spy them charging after one another as January is when their courtship reaches fever pitch.

Newts In mild years can be caught heading for their breeding sites  
Frogspawn The first signs from the early movers can be found in garden ponds.  
Small tortoiseshell butterfly May emerge prematurely if it is a mild winter.



Plants continue to remain dormant and flowers are rare, however the first signs of life are starting to emerge as.

What to See Where to See and comment What it looks like
Snowdrops start to push through the woodland floors and in gardens, and later in the month will provide a white bobbing carpet.


Where to see and photograph Snowdrops,

Hazel Catkins    
Dandelions May emerge prematurely if it is a mild winter.  
Lichens The greens of lichens in woodlands show up well this time of year.  

See Also

For a more in depth look at Wildlife photography in January.

Other species can be found listed in the Wildlife Section or within the topic index under

By: Tracey Park Section: Diary Key:
Page Ref: wildlife_diary_01 Topic: Last Updated: 12/2016

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