As well as our Wardens and volunteers from Wensum Valley Bird Watching Society reporting their sightings, regular visitors to Pensthorpe keep us up to date with what they have spotted.



Eurasian Crane

The Eurasian Crane is a beautiful slate-grey colour, with black feathers on its neck. It stands at over a metre tall, making it the tallest bird in the UK.

Typically they enjoy wetland habitats (which is why they must like Pensthorpe!) and generally eat leaves, roots, berries and insects.


Slow Worm

These reptiles are commonly mistaken for snakes, but you can tell them apart by their eyelids and ear openings. 

Slow worms have an incredible defence mechanism, where they can detach their tail and grow a new one to escape a predator.

They like humid conditions and eat all manor of insects.

Burnished Brass Moth

So-named for it’s metallic colouring on its wings, the Burnished Brass Moth stands out from its kin. 

As a caterpillar, these moths enjoy eating nettles and other herbaceous plants, and can be found in hedgerows and wood edges.

Willow Emerald Damselfly

Willow Emerald Damselflies differ from Emerald Damselflies with their wing spots and green spur on the side of the thorax. You can usually find one near ponds or other still water with overhanging trees.

Water Mint

You will find an abundance of wild water mint at Pensthorpe, and you are more than welcome to crush a leaf between your fingers to smell its aromatic leaves. You will find this plant by water and identify it by its purple flowers and hairy leaves.

Knopper Galls

Knopper Galls are caused by a tiny wasp that produces outgrowths on the acorns of oak trees. The growths start off sticky and red and over time turn into a brown wood-like substance.