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St James's Park, the first of The Royal Parks to be opened to the public, provides habitats for a variety of different species. A short walk away from three palaces (St James's, Westminster and Buckingham Palaces) and in the heart of historical London, the park welcomes over 16.9 million visitors every year and is one of the most visited parks in Europe. This heavy use inevitably has an impact on the wildlife in the area, yet it can be surprising to some how much can live and grow alongside humans.

One of the key habitats in St James's Park is the lake. It is home to a wide range of bird life (including 15 different species of waterfowl) and has nesting sites on Duck Island and West Island.


Learn about the world-famous resident pelicans of St James's Park.


The secluded shrubberies and the woodlands on the islands are important refuges for birds


Although the park has foxes, Wood Mice and Brown Rats these are largely active at night and it is the Grey Squirrel is the most likely mammal for visitors to see.


The majority of trees in the park are Plane trees, which can be seen running alongside The Mall, Birdcage Walk and Horse Guards Parade.


The Mallard is probably the most well known wild duck on the lake in St James's Park and can be seen all year. Other British species of duck seen on the lake include: Shelduck, Wigeon, Gadwall, Teal, Pintail, Shoveler, Common Pochard and Goldeneye.

Nature conservation

St James's Park is a precious haven for wildlife right in the heart of the city. One of the key areas is the beautiful lake, which we’ve given a helping hand with habitat conservation programmes.

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