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)

2015 Notes

26th July 2015
The moorhens still have three chicks which are now just about big enough to survive on their own, they are once again feeding well away from the safety of the ponds.

I have never seen a hare scent mark and I assume that is what the one in the short video below is doing?

A longer look at a Muntjac stag in the video below I could hear him barking all of the time that I was on my early morning dog walk

I saw a badger out well away from the badger setts at 8.25pm last night so the emergence was well before that time.
Yesterday and last night was a busy very wildlife day and night here with badgers ,fallow deer , muntjacs, moorhens with their chicks and a bat briefly on camera

A very close up fallow deer stag in the video below.

The Moorhens are playing a dangerous game feeding with their chicks 90 metres from the pond they hatched their chicks on! I ony saw two chicks this morning??

A male Muntjac

The female fallow deer one with a fawn and a brief glimpse of a bat

2015 Notes

The badger emergence is still in daylight around 9pm.

The resident Green Woodpeckers successfully reared at least two offspring, The greater Spotted Woodpecker reared 4 offspring but two flew into our windows, one survived the incident!

The badger cubs are now nearly adults, I see the occasional cub out with its mother browsing and another very small cub (slightly bigger than a hedgehog) everywhere it moves twice as fast as the other cubs and rarely appears on the camera for more than a second or two.

A very healthy looking red fox with a wonderful “brush”/tail visited us last evening in daylight as per the video(s) below the Moorhen still has 3 chicks as per the video below.

2015 Notes

A busy week just past (wildlife wise)
An owl sits on top of the badger playground watching a young rabbit ( it did not catch it click on the image to enlarge it) Many thanks to Bill Burkhill for sending me the photograph

The Owl

The Owl

A moorhen has two recently hatched chicks in the video below

Two badger cubs(nearly adults now) stop to play!! in the video below

An absolutely gorgeous fallow deer fawn in the video below

A hare sits quietly eating the freshly mown grass while a muntjac passes by in the video below

2015 Notes

The following videos and photographs were taken by Ray and Julie White on their recent visit to our badger-watch, they saw and videoed lots of badgers but thought their record of other species that visited our wildlife reserve should be available for all to see.
Many thanks to Ray and Julie for their contribution to our wildlife photographic collection.

a cautious red fox

a cautious red fox

Two fallow deer close to one of our hides

Two fallow deer close to one of our hides

The fallow deer out grazing

The very active Wagtail feeding one of her fledglings

The kestrels on change over of duties looking after their young that they hatched out in our Tawny Owl box.

A wonderful stag comes in very close to show off his antlers and other bits

2015 Notes

The very warm weather came to an end yesterday afternoon as the sun went behind the clouds a very welcome shower of rain fell.
badgers are still out in daylight with Mrs Brown badger out of the sett and on her way to browse/feed off whatever is around and with the rain earthworms rise to the surface.
A short video film of the visiting fox below.

Two fallow deer does with their fawns

Two fallow deer does with their fawns

The fawns seem to have a mind of their own in the video below.

2015 Notes

Three fledgling magpies exercising their wings in the short video below without getting airborne.

A very healthy looking stag visited our tree garden last evening and gave on of the trees the full force of his antlers!

One badger cub is still with its mother

One badger cub is still with its mother

One of the last born cubs still with its mum out foraging, probably for the next two weeks, all of the other badger cubs are out foraging in with each other but in very small groups of 2-3 cubs.

a very short video of the mum and cub together
Another stag visited us last night (in the video below)

2015 Notes

Fallow Fun and games?

IMAG0023

Watch the video right through

The first time I have ever seen a fawn playing up its mother!!

2015 Notes

The badger emergence is around 8pm, in daylight.

I managed to catch video footage of 5 of the now nearly adult badger cubs, albeit only a few seconds as they visit one of the badger setts in a BIG hurry

A heron visited one of our ponds yesterday

2015 Notes

My two springer spaniel pups found a tawny owl fledgling that seemed to me to have left the safety of its home in a tree too soon as it could not yet fly!!
I put the owlet back in the pollarded tree 20 feet up where it promptly scuttled off and hid.
Keep clicking on the image to full size it

The Tawny owlet just before it was released back into its tree home at 7.30am this morning

The Tawny owlet just before it was released back into its tree home at 7.30am this morning

The badger cubs are now split back up into their individual families seemingly now grown up as they are out with their mothers browsing for food most of the night.

27th June 2015
A fallow deer Doe came to see us last night and brought her very young fawn with her

The fallow doe deer with her Fawn

The fallow doe deer with her Fawn

The fawn on video

2015 Notes

Two hares having fun

A female badger showing one of her cubs how to find food

As close as you can get to a fallow deer.

I look forward to the day that the obviously pregnant muntjac in the very short video below returns here with a fawn

The first badger to emerge last night 19th June was at 7.19pm

The roe deer below was a little “flighty” and on her own.