I have always been a country girl but have found myself learning a lot more about wildlife since moving to our house deep in the sticks.
It is actually amazing what is moving around the landscape and how much of it you realise you haven't noticed. I have seen more in part because I have got my eye in more.
For example....we have a hottub that gives us a view down our small meadow. We sit in it on fine evenings and have the candles on at dusk. Last week we realised we had had owls nesting in an old magpies nest in our blue fir tree and they were semi-fledged. The tree is only 20 yards from our front door! But our usual view of it makes it impossible to see inside the canopy. Anyway, at least 2 Long Eared owlets. We saw mum sweep in with a vole in its beak. Quite a display. seeing the owlets trying to flap about and into the next tree (walnut) where she was trying to coax them was very funny. While she was away one of the owlets worked out a circuitous route where the branches touched and edged sideways the whole way.
He got a vole as a reward for 'flying' there.
we have had a leveret in the grounds since late Feb and he/she is now more or less full grown and is often seen at dusk ambling around the meadow. However, now we have another one! Tiny and very beautiful. could fit in one hand. It's 'form' is in a bushy herbaceous geranium just a couple of feet below our window. It means i can't dead-head my roses because i don't want to disturb it.
We get lots of birds of prey right up to Eagle Owls so perhaps that is why the hares are sticking close to the house.
The flora and fauna in Normandy is pretty much the same as the UK ....we get fire salamanders and i don't think you get those but I may be mistaken, plus we get a few more snake species. Occasionally we do get something a tad more exotic.....One day i found a 20 cm long Praying Mantis in our Holly hedge. It was almost perfectly camoflaged....so it may have been there some time. We get swallowtail butterflies.....not many but a few and they tend to come out in late summer and visit some of the purple thistle-like flowers and scabious in pasture.
"The forest was shrinking, but the trees kept voting for the axe, for the axe was clever and convinced the trees that because his handle was made of wood he was one of them."