Latest News - May 2024


Mallard Ducklings

Over the winter period up to 20 Mallard ducks could be present at our two ponds during the day. Obviously, they were finding a source of food that was keeping them going over leaner times.

We were hopeful that some would stay in the spring and nest. However, our noisy visitors mostly disappeared with the arrival of spring. One pair remained and could be spotted from time to time.

Imagine my delight last Thursday when I discovered a mother and some ducklings on the pond. Since then I have discovered that there are in fact two females present, each having 8 ducklings in tow. Unfortunately, Mr Fox is well aware of their presence and has been seen hanging around the water on a few occasions.


Latest Badger Video

A little while ago the university kindly gifted a wildlife camera to the arboretum. I knew just the family to give it to. Sam, Sarah and their son Walter are frequent, even daily, visitors.

Sam and Walter enthusiastically set about trying out the camera. I would often see them first thing in the morning, fetching the camera to download the previous evening's footage.

After much hard work sifting through hours of clips, they have put together a wonderful little video whichs show that when the gates close and the people disappear, the arboretum becomes a hive of animal activity.

To watch the video just click here

Purchased wild life camera


Dawn Chorus

Saturday 25th May and Saturday 1st June, myself and some of the arboretum volunteers intend to meet early at the arboretum to experience the dawn chorus.

Members of the public are very welcome to join our little adventure. If that is something that sparks your interest, then please do come along.

It is a very early start though: 5:00 am in the morning. The visitor centre will be open, including the public toilets. Free tea and coffee will be available between 5:00 and 5:15 am. We intend to start our walk around at 5:15 am sharp.

The walk itself will be lead by our resident amateur ornithologist, Phil Taylor, who hopes to be able to draw your attention to bird song and interesting facts about our local bird population.

But, of course, we claim no control over either the weather, or the willingness of our feathered friends to participate.

The walk is expected to last no longer than an hour at most. All age groups are welcome, young children included, and buggies, pushchairs, wheelchairs can all be accommodated.

For a memorable start to your Saturday, and the chance to indulge in a once in a lifetime opportunity, feel free to simply turn up on either morning. The Carisbrooke Road gates and car park will be open.

If you would like to register your interest, or have questions, simply email

Please indicate your date of attendance and we will inform you of any changes to plans that may occur in the meantime.