Owl chicks, Scottish wildcats and fun at the Chestnut Centre this summer

LogoWhat are Asian short-clawed otters saying when they squeak? How does an owl manage to turn its head almost 270 degrees? Why are there so many irritating insects and bugs?

Children will be able to find out the answers to these and many more fascinating animal facts at a series of events at the Chestnut Centre this summer. The centre is planning to put the fun into finding out at special activities for children such as otter talks and quizzes, owl talks and quizzes, ugly bug events, insect displays and a woodland craft day.

The sessions will take place in the school summer holidays.  Anyone wanting to know more can check the website at www.chestnutcentre.co.uk for the most up to date information.  

Scottish Wildcat prowling

Scottish Wildcat

There are also some new amazing animals to see at the Chestnut Centre this summer. Three new Scottish wildcats have arrived at the centre from the New Forest Wildlife Park in Hampshire and have settled in well.

Named Apple, Beech and Cherry, the three females are members of a species that is threatened in the wild due to inter-breeding with domestic cats. Once worshiped as forest spirits, they are a true species of cat, just like a leopard or tiger.

Scottish wildcats are the only species considered to be untameable, even when captive reared, and are one of the most elusive and tough species in the world. Only around 100 true Scottish wildcats exist in the wild and efforts are being made to conserve them.  

One of the oldest owls at the Chestnut Centre has also become a father again. Malamute, a Great Grey Owl who is aged 16 years, has produced three new owl chicks with mate Willow. The chicks were born in May and are bound to be an attraction over the school summer holidays. 

The Chestnut Centre, located in 50 acres of beautiful landscaped grounds in the Peak District National Park, is well worth a visit this summer for anyone who loves wildlife and nature. Visitors can wander through the lovely deer meadow, getting up close to the resident herd of fallow and sika deer, and view wildlife in a setting similar to its natural environment. 

Alongside the nearby mountain stream they can see four species of otter, including the endangered giant otter, as well as 17 species of owls, pine martens, polecats, foxes, and Scottish wildcats.

Every day of the week there are meet the keeper sessions, animal feeding times and deer encounters.  There are also guided educational visits for schools and for adult interest groups wanting to find out more about wildlife and conservation.

With lovely woodland trails, a cosy tearoom and well stocked gift shop, the Chestnut Centre has everything for an enjoyable and informative day out for all the family.

The Chestnut Centre was founded in 1984 by Roger and Carol Heap, who share a passion for conservation and for educating children about the importance of wildlife.  The couple celebrate 30 years of running the Chestnut Centre this year and began by looking after abandoned otters in their back garden. 

The Chestnut Centre is in Chapel-en-le-Frith, High Peak, Derbyshire SK23 0QS.  Tel: 01298 814099; email info@chestnutcentre.co.uk

Media contact: Lindsey Darking on 07775 891715 or email lindsey@impactwriters.co.uk



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