Being situated in the South Downs National Park, and surrounded by countryside, Pyecombe is lucky to have a diverse range of local wildlife. Across the A273, Red deer and Roe deer can be seen roaming the fields, particularly at dawn and dusk but occasionally are also seen running in herds across the fields & leaping the fences in the day. Foxes are frequent visitors, and though usually nocturnal they can occasionally be seen running through the fields, sometimes with cubs.
Rabbits and badgers are also local to us in large numbers, and its thought that badgers like the nearby ancient woodland for their setts. The churchyard is also home to bats, which can be seen swooping around at dusk particularly in the Spring & Summer months.
Bird species frequently seen around the village include Buzzards, Sparrowhawks, Kestrels, and in recent years Red Kites. Red Kites were seriously endangered and near extinction in the 1900s, but are making a recovery. Encouragingly they are sometimes seen in pairs, which suggests local nesting might be taking place. There are also local populations of Starlings (also declining in some places), Starlings, Pheasants, Doves and Skylarks. Once even a Parakeet was spotted on Pyecombe golf course!
In the Spring & Summer, the village is lucky to be home to nesting Swallows and House martins, migrating annually all the way from Africa. From time to time Swifts in large numbers fly over the village, feeding on the insects that are abundant due to local farms and open countryside. The Swift and Swallow populations in particular have been in serious decline in recent decades, so it’s encouraging to see nesting pairs as well as efforts to attract birds to nest in the village.
You’re also likely to come across a large number of garden birds in the village, when in season. The list includes, but is not limited to: Blackcaps, Blue tits, Bullfinches, Chaffinches, Chiffchaffs, Coal tits, Crested tits, Goldfinches, Great tits, Greenfinches, House sparrows, Jays, Long tailed tits, Mistle thrushes, Pied Wagtail, Robins, Song thrushes, Tree sparrows, and Wrens.