To help protect the Park’s rich, peaceful and natural environment, Sir David calls on visitors to “Tread Lightly in Richmond Park – leave nothing behind, take nothing away and respect the wildlife.”

He then describes the simple things, that people can do to help protect the Park and its wildlife so that “Richmond Park will remain a paradise for us, our children and our grandchildren to enjoy for many centuries to come”:

This is how visitors can tread lightly and keep Richmond Park the special place it is:

  • Please don’t take wildflowers, nuts, acorns and fungi – all are essential food for birds, bees and deer
  • Fallen wood is home to many insects. Please leave it where it is.
  • Take home all your litter or put it in bins provided so deer don’t eat it – it can seriously harm them
  • Clear up after your dog – it damages the fragile soil structure for wildflowers
  • Give deer plenty of room, especially during birthing and the rut – the deer are wild and people should not get within 50 metres of them
  • Keep your dog on a lead in sensitive areas and near animals – dogs off leads may attack and even kill fawns
  • If you’re on foot, stay on established paths and away from the anthills
  • If you’re on a bike stay to the roads and bike trail (due to erosion, cross-country cycling is forbidden)
  • Please, never light fires or barbecues

Richmond Park’s rich wildlife

Richmond Park is of national and international importance for wildlife conservation; it is London’s largest National Nature Reserve and Site of Special Scientific Interest and a European Special Area of Conservation. It is home to thousands of species of flora and fauna including:

  • 130,000 trees
  • 1,400 ancient or veteran trees up to 800 years old on which hundreds of wildlife species depend
  • 30+ ponds and 2 miles of Beverley Brook
  • 650 wild red and fallow deer
  • 130 species of nesting and visiting birds including tawny and little owls, hobbies, terns and skylarks which are suffering severe population decline
  • 1000+ species of beetle including stag beetles and the red cardinal click beetle dependent on fallen and rotting wood
  • 700 hectares of rare and special acid grasslands with specially adapted wildflowers, attracting numerous species of butterflies, moths and bees, as well as ant hills
  • Half of the UK’s bat species
  • Grass snakes, common lizards, frogs and toads
  • A wide range of fungi including fly agaric, parasol, bracket and puff ball