Nature & Wildlife
The word most often used to describe Chillesford Lodge Estate is unique. It is an Estate where little has changed in the last 600 years, farmed to ensure that a rich diversity of flora and fauna continue to thrive here.
The whole management system is dedicated to preserving the landscape as it offers a unique mix of managed woodland, lowland grazing, natural water courses, productive arable fields, saltwater marshes, and the stunning Butler Creek shimmering in the distance. Views across the Estate are incomparable to anywhere else in the Suffolk Heritage Coast.
Waking up at Chillesford and taking a wander, at certain times of the year it is quite usual to see Barn Owls out hunting the hedgerows, hear Tawny Owls calling territory in the woods, watch Rough Legged Buzzards soar overhead, and if you are very lucky, hear the Bitterns booming in the reed beds of Butley Creek. The richness of the flora and fauna cannot be underestimated and is the result of decades of sensitive land management practices allowing nature to safely coexist with the everyday business of a mixed livestock and arable farm.
Stubble fields are left to fallow over winter so that stone curlews and wild partridges can find a rich source of food all year round. Hedgerows are trimmed in winter well before the herald of spring when new growth provides shelter and safety for the building of nests. The sandstone cliff is scraped as sand martins prefer to build anew each year. After their long migration back from winter feeding grounds they are a joyous flock of over 100 pairs all busy producing up to three clutches of eggs. Oyster catchers, Lapwings, Kingfishers, Swans and all manner of waders make Chillesford Lodge Estate a rare place to live. The widgeon in the Estate logo is a nod to the thousands that congregate in the upper reaches of Butler Creek, migrating back in the autumn and putting on awesome aeronautical displays most evenings. And it simply isn’t possible to tire of watching the swallows and house martins swooping around the buildings, constructing their nests and raising their chicks blissfully alongside their neighbours.
The Estate plays host to many four legged friends too. Hares, Deer, Otters, Badgers and Foxes share the woods with weasels, stoats and voles, with the odd mink occasionally visiting and rabbits popping up everywhere. The rare albino Hart are frequently seen, moving through the farm like ghostly shadows.
Our regular furry and feathered friends live in all manner of habitats demonstrating the broad diversity of the Estate environment. It is this rich diversity which is protected by our continued commitment to traditional management practices.
The Estate is lucky to be able to offer such a private peep show without jeopardising the environment or compromising the quality of life for the farm animals that live here too. It is a lifestyle choice of rare opportunity, a chance to live in a jewel of a place.
Chillesford Lodge Estate – A Perfect Place to Live.
Come and see for yourself.