Hazel is a small, shrubby tree that can be found in a variety of habitats such as woodlands, gardens and grasslands. It is famous for its long, yellow male catkins (known as 'lamb's-tails') that appear in spring, and its green, ripening to brown, fruits (known as hazel nuts) that appear in late summer. These nuts are a favourite food of Grey Squirrels, Dormice and Wood Mice, and some small mammals will cache their finds, storing them in burrows or old bird's nests.
How to identify
Hazel is recognisable by its almost circular, toothed leaves which have soft hairs on the underside, its yellow catkins, shiny, brown bark, and the crop of hazel nuts that appear in late summer.
Where to find it
When to find it
How can people help
The Wildlife Trusts manage many woodland nature reserves sympathetically for all kinds of species. A mix of coppicing, scrub-cutting, ride maintenance and non-intervention all help woodland wildlife to thrive. You can help too: volunteer for your local Wildlife Trust and you could be involved in everything from traditional forest crafts to raising awareness about woodland animals.