Wildlife area at Avon Heath
Home to a number of habitats and in easy reach of the Heathland Discovery Centre.
Surrounded by established woodland and possessing a large pond, wood piles, bird and bat boxes, the wildlife area offers much variety to the park's residents. Goldfinches, woodpeckers, wagtails, robins, emperor dragonflies, bumble and honey bees are regular visitors, while other sightings have included heron, foxes, nuthatches, siskin and willow warblers. The viewing hide provides the perfect opportunity to keep an eye on any activity (with binoculars attached inside the hide) or if a warmer venue is preferred you can view images from cameras that are displayed into the Discovery Centre.
Next to the wildlife area is the vivarium, which houses sand lizards and is part of an important breeding programme. In Spring/summer there is a good chance of seeing one, most likely basking on the logs when there is some sun, but not too hot - a great opportunity to observe one of these rare species. The rangers feed them crickets on cloudy days when the heath's invertebrates are less active and hunting is therefore harder for the lizards. Once hatched, eggs are carefully removed and passed onto Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Trust to incubate. The young are released on sites where populations have been struggling. In previous years this has included Hengistbury Head and sites in Hampshire.