Horsey Ranger Hannah Blades celebrates World Ranger Day

a yellow and black swallowtail butterfly feeding on a purple flower

World Ranger Day both commemorates Rangers killed or injured in the line of duty and celebrates the critical work Rangers do to protect the world’s natural and cultural treasures. Our team of rangers at the Norfolk Coast and Broads property stand alongside our global colleagues in caring for the natural environment and helping the survival of our wildlife. Our Horsey Ranger Hannah shares some of her work with us.

In the wildlife and sensory garden the re-laid paving has increased accessibility, enabling more of our visitors to enjoy the garden.

The wildlife garden at Horsey Windpump is accessible for all visitors
grey paving slabs surrounded by tall plants with colourful flowers
The wildlife garden at Horsey Windpump is accessible for all visitors

The garden is also being frequented by a wide variety of wildlife including; Swallowtail butterflies seen feeding on the Dame’s -violet, (Hesperis matronalis), and the rare Yellow Loosestrife bee feeding on the Yellow Loosestrife ( Lysimachia vulgaris) in the pond. The yellow loosestrife bee is generally only found in wetland habitats where their main forage food the yellow loosestrife can be found. 

The wildlife garden at Horsey Windpump provides nectar for many pollinating insects
Lots of tall plants with colourful flowers in an area around grey paving slabs. A raised wooden pond can be seen on the left
The wildlife garden at Horsey Windpump provides nectar for many pollinating insects

At the back of the wildlife garden a willow tunnel has been added to encourage the younger generation to enjoy the garden (and the young at heart).  

The newly planted willow tunnel at Horsey Windpump
sticks of willow with leaves on laid in the form of a tunnel
The newly planted willow tunnel at Horsey Windpump

During the winter the tunnel is going to be extended so it joins up with the paving in the garden. The garden is maintained all year round by our dedicated team of Ranger volunteers, resulting in a garden full of plants that can enjoyed by both nature and visitors alike. 

The orchard at Horsey has also had a variety of improvements and additions made to it over recent months. The entrance way off the over-flow carpark has been given an upgrade.

The orchard at Horsey Windpump is a lesser known corner of the site.
Two black wooden fences either side of a path leading into an orchard with tall grass and flowers
The orchard at Horsey Windpump is a lesser known corner of the site.


The orchard meadow has been awash with different wild flowers, including; Ladys bedstraw, Germander speedwell, Common mouse-ear, and both red and white clover. 

We are in the process of building a bug hotel and once complete it will provide an overwinter home for a range of different insects. In the spring, the top will be covered in early nectar plants, like crocuses which will provide pollinator species a nectar boost.

A bug hotel at Horsey Windpump is under construction
a pile of wooden pallets waiting to be built into a bug hotel, surrounded by long grass
A bug hotel at Horsey Windpump is under construction

The far end of the orchard has also seen some construction work in the form of a grass tidy.

A grass tidy for cut grass from Horsey Windpump, built by our ranger team.
a black wooden box fence acts as a tidy for cut grass
A grass tidy for cut grass from Horsey Windpump, built by our ranger team.

During the winter months we shall be making a willow bower to go over the orchard bench and seeding more varieties of wild flowers ready for spring. 

World Ranger Day and its origins

World Ranger Day is observed each year on the last day of July and is celebrated by the International Ranger Federation’s (IRF’s) member Associations, The Thin Green Line Foundation, and by organisations, schools and individuals who support the work of Rangers and the IRF worldwide.

For more information on World Ranger Day please click here