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Local weather


The Observatory can accommodate up to 9 people in two dormitories, you need to bring your own sleeping bags and it is self-catering. As well as Birdwatchers, we welcome people from many areas of interest including Moths, Butterflies, Bugs and Beetles or just a general interest in Nature and the local environment. Please forward any Dungeness recording area records to the Warden.
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Rabbits and Foxes are seen on most days throughout the year. Brown Hares are regularly seen and Stoats and Weasels are less frequently seen. Badgers are occasionally seen after dark and even visit the Observatory garden at times. Both Pigmy and Common Shrews are present along with Bank Vole and Wood MouseMost of the more interesting mammal records involve bats and marine animals.

Brown Hare Lepus capensis

Badger Meles meles

Common Seal Phoca vituulina

Some work has been carried out recently on the bats of the area and Nathusius's Pipistrelle and Whiskered Bats are now known to occur regularly. Common and Soprano Pipistrelles are also frequently recorded and there are occasional records of Daubenton's and Liesler's Bat
Nathusius' Pipistrelle Pipistrellus nathusii
Whiskered Bat Myotis mystacinus

In recent years there have been several sightings of White-beaked Dolphins and Harbour Porpoises have become an almost daily feature.
Harbour Porpoise Phocoena phocoena


WESTERN HEDGEHOG  Erinaceous europaeus
COMMON SHREW  Sorex araneus
PIGMY SHREW  Sorex minutus
WATER SHREW  Neomys fodiens
DAUBENTON’S BAT  Myotis daubentonii
WHISKERED BAT  Myotis mystacinus
KUHL'S PIPISTRELLE  Pipistrellus kuhlii
NATHUSIUS’ PIPISTRELLE  Pipistrellus nathusii
COMMON PIPISTRELLE  Pipistrellus pipistrellus
SOPRANO PIPISTRELLE  Pipistrellus pygmaeus
LEISLER’S BAT  Nyctalus leisleri
NOCTULE  Nyctalus noctula
SEROTINE  Eptesicus serotinus
BROWN HARE  Lepus europaeus
RABBIT  Oryctolagus cuniculus
BANK VOLE Clethrionomys glareolus
FIELD VOLE  Microtus agrestis
HARVEST MOUSE  Micromys minutus
WOOD MOUSE  Apodemus sylvaticus
HOUSE MOUSE  Mus musculus
BROWN RAT  Rattus norvegicus
HARBOUR PORPOISE  Phocoena phocoena
COMMON DOLPIN  Delphinus delphinus
WHITE-SIDED DOLPHIN  Lagenorynchus acutus
WHITE-BEAKED DOLPHIN  Lagenorhynchus albirostris
BOTTLE-NOSE DOLPHIN  Tursiops truncatus
RISSO’S DOLPHIN  Grampus griseus
LONG-FINNED PILOT WHALE  Globicephala melas
ORCA  Orcinus orca
RED FOX  Vulpes vulpes
STOAT  Mustela erminea
WEASEL  Mustela nivalis
AMERICAN MINK  Mustela vison
BADGER  Meles meles
COMMON SEAL  Phova vitulina
GREY SEAL  Halichoerus grypus
ROE DEER  Capreolus capreolus

Reptiles and Amphibians

The only snake found in the area is the Grass Snake. In early spring they can often be seen basking on the short turf of the Moat or on the banks of the Long Pits. Later in the season most sightings are of individuals hunting amongst the emergent vegetation of the pits.
Common Lizards are frequently seen in the drier areas and even in many of the gardens.
Newts are represented by the Smooth Newt. Although common in the surrounding area, Great Crested Newts are not found at the Long Pits.

Marsh Frog Rana ridibundus
Common Frog is not common and Common Toads are occasionally seen but the commonest amphibian by far is the large and very noisy Marsh FrogThe first individuals of this species were originally introduced into Britain into a small garden pool at Stone-in-Oxney in the winter of 1934-35. Since then the population has increased and spread dramatically and they can now be seen or heard in many ditches and pools throughout Romney Marsh.

A Red-eared Terrapin was first seen at the Long Pits in 2005 and two individuals have now been seen in 2006. There was a further sighting in 2007 and one was seen on August 5th 2009. The first sighting in 2010 was at the Long Pits on 9th September. Individuals have continued to be seen up until 2018.