Spring into life at The Park
The flowers are blooming, bees are buzzing and the days are getting longer. Spring at The Park brings hope and new beginnings for the natural world around us. Early May sees the beautiful bluebells bloom across the woodland floors. Head down Red Trail to see the famed Dalkeith Country Park bluebell walk in all its glory. Make sure to keep your eyes peeled for new life emerging across The Park. Badgers, roe deer and woodland birds will all be appearing with young. If you’re lucky enough you may even get a rare sighting of otters moving down the River Esk in late spring. The Old Oak Wood re-opens to our visitors in April, having had a resting period since November.
Summer days in The Park
During summer at Dalkeith Country Park the trees and grass experience a big growth spurt. New leaves and luscious grass provide The Park wildlife with lots of new sources of food for their growing families. The Old Oak Wood looks particularly picturesque during the summer months. Our favourite sky dancers – swallows – return to settle down and breed while the roe deer doe’s give birth at the beginning of June. Keep a look out for white-spotted kids leaping around The Park. As for nature, you are likely to come across Common Spotted Orchids along the waymarked walking trails. They can grow up to half a metre high and have a tall pink, white and purple flower spike – truly beautiful.
Autumn is acorn season
As we wave goodbye to the summer months at Dalkeith Country Park, we say hello to one of our favourite seasons. Autumn brings an outbreak of rich colour to the trees. One thing you can count on is an abundance of acorns. Head down the Purple Trail to see The Park team harvesting acorns. This is a very important annual harvest as it allows us to keep the line of mighty oaks thriving in the Old Oak Wood. The majority of The Park’s wildlife is getting ready for the winter months ahead. Whether it’s the Pipistrelle bats darting around at dusk to fill up for the colder weather, or the hedgehogs finding a good spot to cosy up for winter hibernation.
Winter Wonderland at Dalkeith
Winter brings a dormant period for nature at The Park as it gets ready to rejuvenate for the new year ahead, however, it is the perfect time to spot wildlife! While the trees are bare, birds and squirrels can be easily spotted so don’t forget to look up, as there’s a whole lot going on above your head. Keep your ears open too! Mating foxes and vocal tawny owls become rather loud in the winter months at Dalkeith Country Park. Head down to the River Esk to see the Mallard ducks in nesting season. Their plumage is usually at its very best, with the males displaying a dark green head, purple-brown breast and yellow bill.
Bird Watchers Guide
Here at Dalkeith Country Park, we love birds! With over 30 species, our birds thrive amongst the vast array of wildlife & nature that call The Park home. From the colorful Goldfinch to the elusive Tree Creeper, use this guide to help you spot your favourites and even identify some you may have never laid eyes on before.
Hear from the Park Ranger
Want to stay up to date with all things Dalkeith Country Park? Our very own Park Ranger – and photographer – Kieran Playfair, keeps us up to date on all of The Park happenings. From seasonal changes, top wildlife spots and important projects The Park team are taking on, there is always something to keep up with.
Kieran has a fantastic update for us on The Parks oak tree cold frame project. Started in late autumn of 2022, the Park Rangers have been working towards growing our very own oak tree seedlings from the Old Oak Wood. Let’s find out how they’re getting on.