Although it is widely known for its main city due to its main monument being recognised world-wide, the rural side of France is what draws many in too. Unrestricted by a single habitat and climate France neatly sits in between several different regions which allow you to go from the coast of the Mediterranean Sea to the Alps. This diversity brings with it not just aesthetic appeal but a great range of liveable environments for wildlife in the region.
If you think all France has to offer in the wildlife department is the odd hare or frog, you will be sorely mistaken. The woodland, plains and wetlands here make up the perfect conditions for several unlikely creatures that you may not suspect. Here are just a handful of the fauna you may spot in your time in France, another great reason for animal lovers to visit.
Though restricted to the Vosges and Pyrenees, these ‘medium sized cats’ are much bigger than the ones you have tearing up your sofa at home but significantly smaller than the giant beasts that roam the African planes. Lynxes are solo predators and can be found hunting for a bite to eat as they stalk mammals of many sizes. Known by their distinctively sharp triangular ears and stubby tails, if the neighbours cat looks odd one night you might be mistaking it for one of these Eurasian wonders.
As the green fields stay in your rear view mirror and the environment becomes covered in white you will notice several brown figures in seemingly impossible places amongst the cliffs here, these are the Ibex. A type of mountain goat the Ibex, just like the other variations in its species is not shy when it comes to heights, thanks to the shape and grip of their hooves they can traverse faces that are almost vertical.. The Ibex here can commonly be spotted in the cooler mountainous regions as they are in fact Alpine Ibex, a breed specific to this region.
These loveable little critters can easily be mistaken for ferrets due to their size and shape but when looked at closer this mammal is sturdier than the former. Adapted to be a great forager in the forest, you will find these in wooded areas as their main diet consists of berries. They are very quick however and spotting them will take a keen eye especially if you want to keep track of a hungry one.
It almost seems like fantasy to be out in the fields and witness a group of wild horses ride past, but here in France this is a reality. These small but spectacular white horses live out in the marshlands bringing another element of beauty to the outdoors here. If you are lucky to see a herd in their natural habitat you may spy them playing together, trotting in sequence and splashing amongst the waters as if begging you to grab your camera and take a photo.