Bearded tits, surely would be better named moustached tits, as the stunning males have black moustaches rather than beards. Numbers have increased locally during November. This week seven were seen at Wat Tyler Country Park, in the reeds near the new boardwalk at the southern end of the park. A pair gave stunning views on West Canvey Marsh, again in the reeds near the gate which leads to Pantile. Also seen in the same place was a water rail, while a green woodpecker and three reed buntings were close by. Also at West Canvey Marsh a red admiral butterfly was seen along the seawall, while a water vole was watched in one of the ditches. Back at Wat Tyler, up to three cetti's warblers have been heard, with one regularly seranading RSPB staff and volunteers from the hedge opposite our visitor centre.
male Bearded Tit by Andy Hay rspbimages
Thursday 18th November: Christmas cards, cakes & coffee at Wat Tyler Country Park 10.00am – 4pmBuy your RSPB Christmas cards and other gifts this year at Wat Tyler. Enjoy a piece of cake and a coffee as you look through a selection of seasonal RSPB goods. Free event, no need to book
Thursday 18th November: Thursday Wildlife walk at Wat Tyler Country Park 10.30am – 12.30pmCome for a FREE guided walk each Thursday around Wat Tyler Country Park, discover the wildlife of the park and see the changes that each season brings. Free event, no need to book
On our West Canvey Marsh walk on Saturday morning up to three bramblings were seen, one or two were with the chaffinch flock along the Pantile track, view the track here: http://www.mapmate.co.uk/userzone/p/Locate/s/TQ7674484579 Another two or maybe the same two were seen later in the car park hedgerow. Also seen were five skylark, 12 curlew, 15 wigeon, 3 little egrets and a cetti's warbler was heard. This is a regular monthly walk with one of the wardens and takes place on the first Saturday of each month. To book a place call 01268 498627.
Our Vange Marsh reserve was graced by a first-winter male marsh harrier on Saturday morning, along with two bearded tits at the western end. One water rail was heard while 32 black-tailed godwits were seen along with three common snipe.
Wat Tyler Country Park had five spotted redshank, 20 black-tailed godwits along with curlew and redshank in the creek, while two water rails were calling. Two cetti's warblers were heard near the scrape hide.
Our visitor centre at Wat Tyler is open seven days a week, 10 am - 4 pm. Why not pop in and report your wildlife sightings and have a look at our sightings board, we wouldn't want you to miss anything.
Join us this November for your chance to buy this years RSPB Christmas cards. Enjoy a slice of locally baked homemade cake and a hot drink as you look through a selection of seasonal RSPB goods.
There will be a wide range of cards and gifts on offer with prices to suit all pockets and don’t forget – all proceeds go to helping birds and wildlife.
Cards and gifts will be on sale in the South Essex Marshes visitor centre on the 4th, 18th, 27th and 28th November between 10-4. The Visitor Centre and Discovery Zone are located within Basildon District Council's Wat Tyler Country Park and act as the gateway to our South Essex Marshes reserves.
For that extra special Christmas surprise a pair of binoculars or a telescope would make an ideal gift. Or if you are looking to upgrade your current equipment, experts from Viking Optical will be offering helpful advice and allowing you to try a wide range of binoculars, telescopes and tripods before you buy on Thursday 25 November.
So, warm up this festive season and come and see us soon!