We are proud, astonished and fascinated by the nature that we share the Le Moulin de Pensol with.
We are lucky enough to have 20 acres (nearly 8 Hectares) of land, bisected by the River Bandiat.
About 2 Ha is sweet chestnut coppice woodland. The rest is meadows and orchards. Where the fields run down to the river the grassland becomes marshy with rushes and fen plants. Cuckoo flower and king cups flower in abundance here in the spring. No wonder the amphibian life is so rich, with pool frogs, edible frogs, marbled and great-crested newts all present. Fire salamanders amaze and delight us on damp warm evenings in autumn. They like the full moons best.
We have recorded 63 species of butterflies in our garden and grounds alone – more than in the whole of the UK! We have one field which rises steeply and is much drier. Here you will find early purple and burnt orchids early in the year. There is abundant ribwort plantain which supports a large population of glanville fritilliary butterflies. Our donkeys graze this important field in the late summer, returning to their shelter in the woods at night.
Red squirrels play in the trees around the Mill House and golden orioles sing in the woods behind the gites. Our two caves are home to seven species of bats.
We run a moth trap in the summer for guests who are interested, and are always looking to increase our species list for all groups across the site. If any of our guests would like to help in this project or have expertise in the more difficult groups we would be delighted to work with you (over a glass of wine of course) and to receive your records when you have left..
For a full species list click below (Excel format).