Enjoy a peaceful, relaxing, self-catering holiday in a secluded mobile home situated in the heart of the countryside.Spectacular views across Cotswolds and floodlit badger-watching facilities within 50 metres of the accommodation
You will enjoy THE EXCLUSIVE use of our three badger-watch hides during your stay
at College Barn Farm, Sibford Gower, Banbury, Oxfordshire OX15 5RY
The conservation project at College Barn Farm commenced in 1987 when Richard & Sandra Butt bought the farm. It includes the planting of trees and shrubs as well as encouraging and, as far as possible, protecting and preserving the resident wildlife.
Their aim is to establish and sustain a Eight-acre wildlife area containing as many different varieties of trees and wildlife as possible, with badger setts and four ponds included within this area. The provision of mobile-home accommodation and badger-watching facilities for visitors not only helps to fund their conservation project, but also enables other wildlife enthusiasts to share their enjoyment of such. With the help of Badger-Watch visitors, they are able to protect the badgers by observing their setts daily and the badgers most evenings by floodlight from two heated hides and a recently established third hide.
Badger-Watch provides visitors with the opportunity to enjoy a peaceful, relaxing, self-catering holiday in a secluded mobile home situated in the heart of the countryside. They can watch badgers and other wildlife at night by floodlight from a warm hide (exclusively for their own use) which is very conveniently situated only about 50 yards away.
A nosy fox caught on camera at College Barn Farm
During the day there are many other varieties of wildlife, from small birds to grass snakes to roe/fallow/muntjac deer (subject to the season) to be observed at College Barn Farm. One visitor spotted a total of 47 different kinds of birds during her stay, which included kingfishers, woodpeckers, sparrow-hawks, buzzards, kestrels and owls.
About twenty or so badgers, including cubs, currently live in the setts (including an artificial sett) and are regularly viewed – unrestricted by glass – at close range by visitors sitting quietly in the hides.
The main hide, which is heated and can seat four persons, is on ground level at the entrance, but 10ft. above ground on the viewing side where the field below (containing the setts) slopes away. During the winter of 2009 a balcony was added which allows our visitors an elevated view of the badger setts and the surrounding area day and night. Watchers usually leave a trail of peanuts from the setts up to the hide and very soon after dark, the badgers come up for their breakfast. They can be clearly seen as there are two floodlights mounted above the hide. These don’t seem to bother the badgers in any way.
A second hide, which is sunk into the ground and seats three/four is situated by the end of the largest pond. This location provides an unrestricted eye-level view of the badgers from the front of the hide and and a view along two ponds from the side window. Photography flaps are located to the front and side of the hide. This hide is also heated and has two reclining seats and two cushion seats. The third hide, constructed in 2006, is situated further down the badger-field on the extremity of the lower badger sett. It, too, seats three/four persons. (details of the hides including photographs can be seen under wildlife notes 2007)
A momentous night last night!! a badger decided to climb “Links Log” the new addition to the badger playground, the badger was not the only animal to climb the log last night my cameras captured the fastest mouse in England. (watch the video until the end 35 seconds)
The bravest badger in England?
The fastest mouse in England? I can assure you the video is NOT speeded up
The moorhens seem to have survived the winter well with only a little help from me food wise
The badgers seem to be getting busier, I am seeing them on various cameras from 7pm until 6am the next morning.
A red fox passed by one of my cameras this morning, I have seen it several times before normally at night and always very briefly.
(Double click twice on the image to full size it)
The black birds are getting busy even though I told them SPRING IS NOT HERE YET!! I do not think I have seen so many adult blackbirds in one place before.
Frosty weather has helped us complete our modifications to the viewing of badgers from our “running water hide” and to complete the badger playground which we finished today! The first video below shows how the playground looked in 2014 the second video shows how it looks today 23rd January 2015
You will be pleased to hear that the badgers emerged every night during the 3 half days that we worked on the playground while the frost was still in the ground.
I spotted a barn owl hunting through the wood this past week and also a fleeting glimpse of a kingfisher on our top pond,buzzards kestrels,a sparrow hawk and red kites were also seen during the week.
Mild wet and windy weather keeps a food supply available for the badgers.
Two badgers meet in the video below, it looked to me as if they were both in a hurry, but from different setts.
Perseverance wins the day: An amazing display of strength from a determined badger
A happy new year!
The badger emergence has moved from 5.45pm to anywhere between 8.45pm and 10pm and is pretty much unpredictable.
I am in the process of moving my cameras to active setts to check the occupants and their condition as their cubs will be due next month.
I am yet to see a badger in poor condition here. (I hope these are not famous last word’s)
The first sett to show a “pair of badgers” is depicted in the video below.. they had four cubs in this sett situated behind the walnut tree, last year.
The badger in the video below gets to the peanuts eventually
Father Christmas missed this one.
A look at a badger maybe thinking of using this sett for rearing her cubs next year
Round and round the walnut tree 4 of this years cubs spent their first hour above ground chasing each other around the walnut tree on Christmas Day/Evening
The badgers were emerged early last night and in force
The brave little male muntjac feeding on apples in daylight before they got frosted over last night
An unusual happening two adult muntjacs in the same place at the same time but NOT together
The badger emergence has come back to around 6pm for the first badger with others emerging up to about 8.30 the last one I see go back to the sett is around 4am
The fallow deer are around our orchard at 4pm or before and are now getting toward the end of eating the fallen apples! It is a big help to me them eating the fallen apples as it helps to stop the soil becoming acidic.
A good close up video of the albino fallow deer and some of her followers below.
(click on the image to full size it)
The North wind doth blow and it is now noticeably cooler!
Our springer Spaniel pups have performed very well in their 8weeks and 4 days of life see image below (click on the image to full size it)
Buzzards took several days to find the pheasant in the video below that I picked up on an evening dog walk
A short video of close up fallow deer in daylight yesterday.
A muntjac joins the apple feeding frenzy in daylight
Another day another view of the mutjac back here for more apples!!
My friend the largest of all the fallow deer stags that have visited College Barn Farm, (that I know of) has injured his front left leg
A close up in the video below of my old friend the albino fallow deer, she was here early this morning with 11 other fallow deer including at least 3 of her fawns from previous years.