Birdlife is profuse - the reservoir attracts many species of wildfowl, as does the river, and the spinneys provide secluded nesting areas for many other species, including large colonies of rooks and jackdaws. Species such as yellowhammer, reed bunting, skylark and meadow pipit are a common sight in the open areas of the park. Deadly nightshade is allowed to grow within the ruins of Bradgate House, having been originally established there during World War II by Leicester Polytechnic's School of Pharmacy for medicinal purposes.
Total species seen at this site: 640
Bradgate Park is Leicestershire’s most popular park. Located in Charnwood Forest just northwest of Leicester it covers 850 acres (3 km²). The River Lin runs through it, flowing into Cropston Reservoir which was constructed on part of the park. To the north-east lies Swithland Wood. The park's two well known landmarks, Old John and the war memorial, both lie close to the 200m contour. The landscape is rocky moorland with a covering of coarse grass and bracken. Several spinneys of woodland (pine and mixed deciduous) are enclosed by stone walls, and are not accessible to the public. There are a number of magnificent specimens of ancient oaks several hundreds of years old. The park is home to herds of red deer and fallow deer.
|Common Name||Latin Name||Date Recorded||Recorded By|
|Green Woodpecker||Picus viridis||16/04/2018||Steve Mathers|
|Wigeon||Anas penelope||16/04/2018||Steve Mathers|
|Pied Wagtail||Motacilla alba||16/04/2018||Steve Mathers|
|Lesser Celandine||Ficaria verna||16/04/2018||Steve Mathers|
|Buff-tailed Bumblebee||Bombus terrestris||16/04/2018||Steve Mathers|
|Tawny Mining Bee||Andrena fulva||16/04/2018||Steve Mathers|
|Peacock||Aglais io||16/04/2018||Steve Mathers|
|Buzzard||Buteo buteo||16/04/2018||Steve Mathers|
|Grey Squirrel||Sciurus carolinensis||30/03/2018||Orientalis|
|Primrose||Primula vulgaris||22/03/2018||Barbara Cooper|
|Common Frog||Rana temporaria||22/03/2018||Barbara Cooper|
|Great Spotted Woodpecker||Dendrocopos major||22/03/2018||Barbara Cooper|
|Yellowhammer||Emberiza citrinella||15/03/2018||Barbara Cooper|
|Brown-lipped Snail||Cepaea nemoralis||15/03/2018||Barbara Cooper|
|Fallow Deer||Dama dama||15/03/2018||Barbara Cooper|
The park lies between the villages of Newtown Linford, Anstey, Cropston, Woodhouse Eaves and Swithland. There are pay car parks at Cropston Reservoir, Newtown Linford, and Hunts Hill (at the top of the park near Old John). The park is open from dawn until dusk all year round, though the public footpaths which run through the area mean that in practice the park is always accessible. There is a visitors' centre (with cafe) at Newtown Linford, and another in the centre of the park named the Deer Barn near Bradgate House. It is also possible to travel to the park by bus with routes from both Leicester and Loughborough.