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Explore Bernwood Forest
(Average user rating: 5 unrated 4.5/5)

Bernwood Forest was part of The Royal Hunting Forest of Bernwood, which covered approximately fifty modern day parishes, and received royal protection for over 700 years. The Bernwood Jubilee Way, part of the project to reinforce the identity of the hunting forest, runs through a section of the wood on its 61 mile journey within the Ancient Forest Boundary.

Shabbington and Waterperry, the two woods that make up Bernwood Forest are gradually being converted to native broadleaf and continuous cover through natural regeneration. Hopefully in time these areas will revert to an Oak woodland with hazel understorey.

One of the main priorities is to encourage food plants for the wide variety of both rare and common butterflies which live in the Forest.


What do other visitors say?

5 Stars 5 Stars

I walked the butterfly transects yesterday (5 August). Most of the butterflies that I saw were on the yellow flowers of a ragwort-like plant. However, the leaves are not those of ragwort. What are the plants?

Trevor Lea, 6/Aug/2018

From the description it sounds like St John's Wort.

Forestry Commission Response
5 Stars 5 Stars

I walked the two Butterfly Conservation transects today (Sunday).

I saw lots of speckled woods.

Some of the large oak trees are infested with small white moths. Any idea what they are?


Trevor Lea, 10/Jun/2018

Many thanks for your enquiry regarding your recent sighting of large numbers of small white moths. The moths that you have seen are almost certainly Oak Tortrix moth in fact they are of a very light coloured green when seen close up, they are certainly evident at this time of year. The adult moth rolls the leaves of Oak and other broadleaf tree species and lay their eggs inside these then hatch into caterpillars that feed on the leaves. In some years there are huge numbers and rapid defoliation can occur by the feeding caterpillars.

Forestry Commission Response

I have read your information which is very interesting but may i just mention that' recieved royal protection 'should read 'received ' With best wishes

Barbara Horne, 29/Apr/2018

Thank you. I will amend.

Forestry Commission Response
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Last updated: 10th July 2018

Help us take care of your forest

What's Here?

  • Picnic
  • Walking
  • Wildlife
  • The wood contains about forty species of butterflies making it one of the most important sites for Lepidoptera in Britain. Many species of wild flower are present along the rides, within the wood. These are carefully managed by Forest Enterprise to provide the butterflies with a varied habitat and food source. Bernwood is also home to Fallow and Muntjac deer and many species of fungi.
More about what's here


OS Grid ref: SP 613117

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Wendover Woods Office

0300 067 4160 (Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings) 07796 313507 all other times

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England's Woods and Forests are cared for by Forest Enterprise England, an agency of the Forestry Commission.