Blackley Forest is designated a Grade B Site of Biological Importance.

Animals and Birds

Our latest ecological survey shows that it is home to the following wildlife:

  • Up to 5 species of bat... so be sure to book your place on one of our popular bat walks during the summer months.

  • 30 breeding species of birds including approximately 30 breeding pairs of Wrens.

  • At least one Kingfisher, a sure sign of improving water quality in the river!

  • Approximately 200 species of Invertebrates have been recorded including Dragonfly and Damselfly

Click here for a wildlife tick list

You can find out more about some of the bird species you will see in the forest at this
BBC webpage:

Helping Wildlife in Your Garden

Come along to any of our open days and events and find out more about how you can help nature and make your own bird nesting box or bug house!

For details of our events click here:

Hedgehog numbers have declined by up to 50% in some areas of the UK in the last 25 years.

You can help by making small changes in your garden and local area, such as creating a small gap in your fence to allow hedgehogs to travel from garden to garden.

For more details visit the Hedgehog Street website: www.hedgehogstreet.org

Toad. Photo: Sarah Griffiths

Ground flora. Photo: Sarah Griffiths

Brown Hawker Dragonfly.
Photo: Sarah Griffiths


The forest is home to at least 241 species of plants and includes a wide range of habitats including planted and semi-natural woodland and species-rich neutral grasslands, open water and wetland communities.

The main tree canopy species are:

  • Beech

  • Silver and Downy Birch

  • Ash and Alder

  • Common and Sessile Oak

  • Willow

We are working to encourage a wider range of ground flora species. The damp slopes and the marginal swamps of the fishing reservoirs are good places to find many different species, including:

  • Anemone

  • Marsh Marigold,

  • Lesser Celandine

  • Large Bittercress

  • Wood Horsetail

  • Yellow Pimpernel

  • Water Plantain

  • Yellow Flag

  • Yellow Water Lily

Are you visiting the forest?

Click here to download your SIGHTING PACK which includes a list of birds, animals and insects to look out for and a sheet to record which ones you see!