West Wales Bandit

The Polecat

at Llys-y-Frân Lake

Llys-y-Frân Lake is free to enter

Brought to you by Welsh Water

The Polecat


An interesting mammal at Llys-y-Frân is the polecat, the wild cousin of the domesticated ferret. Identified by its distinctive bandit-mask with white stripes across its dark face, the polecat has a two-tone coat: dark brown guard hairs cover a buff-coloured underfur. It has a short, dark tail and rounded ears.

The polecat was driven to near-extinction in Britain and survived mainly here in West Wales although it has now successfully expanded its range across the country and into England. The polecat hunts at night, mostly preying on rabbits and small rodents but it may also eat frogs, birds and snakes.

Fact File

Scientific name: Mustela putorius

Length: 32-45cm

Tail: 12-19cm

Weight: 0.5-1.9kg

Average lifespan: 5 years

Did you know…?

Polecats do sometimes produce young with escaped ferrets; these hybrids tend to have lighter, creamier fur on their back and more white on their faces, extending past their ears.

Wildlife & Nature Highlights

Wildlife & Nature at Llys-y-Frân

The mix of farmland, woodland, scrub and waterside habitats means Llys-y-Frân Lake is an area rich in wildlife and nature.

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Otters

Llys-y-Frân is an important habitat for otters due to the lake’s high water quality, the abundance and variety of food available and bank-side vegetation.

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Birds

A haven for wildlife and nature in the heart of the Pembrokeshire countryside, Llys-y-Frân Lake attracts a diverse array of bird species.

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Photograph by Charlie Marshall reproduced under Creative Commons licence 2.0

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