News archive

December 2017

Friday, 15 December 2017

Bird list and report on our coach trip to Slimbridge.

Bird list and report on our coach trip to Slimbridge.

At Slimbridge we enjoyed good views of snipe, a water rail clambering about on top of vegetation, and 3 cetti's warblers chasing about beneath. There were barnacle and whitefront geese flying by and grazing, and some of our smartest ducks: wigeon, pintail and teal. Flocks of lapwing and golden plover flew about, and we saw at least 5 common cranes; the day ended with the swan feed: good views of Bewick's swans, a little stint and a perched peregrine.

Click 'download file' to open a PDF list of the day's sightings.

Download file

Thursday, 14 December 2017

The Madagascan Pochard Project & The Flight of the Swans by Peter Cranswick from WWT Slimbridge

The Madagascan Pochard Project & The Flight of the Swans by Peter Cranswick from WWT Slimbridge

Peter works at Slimbridge and in Madagascar and will speak on two of the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust's most well-known and important projects: the fight to save the Madagascan Pochard, the world's rarest duck; and after the interval, Sacha Dench's epic paraglider trip for the WWT following Bewick's swans as they migrated from Russia to Europe in the winter of 2016-17.

And afterwards: Christmas drinks and nibbles!


Doors open 6.15 pm. Tea, coffee & biscuits available before the talk. Talk starts at 6.45pm.

Admission: Everyone welcome.
No need to book - simply pay on the door. Non-members £5; RSPB & RSPB Central London Local Group members £4; students (NUS) & under-18s free.
Please note: there will be an extra charge of £1 per person for the Christmas refreshments after the talk.

How to find us: Easy to get to (near Harrods).

Tube: Knightsbridge (Piccadilly Line) 4 mins' walk; Sloane Sq (District & Circle Lines) 15 mins.

Bus: 9, 10, 52 (Knightsbridge); 14, 74, 414, C1 (Brompton Rd); 19, 22, 137, 452, C1 (Sloane St).

Parking: some around the church: free after 18:30h. (We are outside the congestion zone.)

(For anyone who has a copy of our Events Programme printed in the summer, please note that we have needed to swap the order of our November & December talks. This is why our December talk will be by Peter Cranswick from WWT Slimbridge ).

Saturday, 9 December 2017

Coach Trip to Slimbridge Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust Reserve

Coach Trip to Slimbridge Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust Reserve

The 800 acre site has unique mudflats created by the Severn Bore, plus saltmarshes, scrubland, reedbeds, woods and lakes. It welcomes hundreds of thousands of birds a year including Bewick's swans, grey geese including white-fronted, wigeon, pintail, goosander, curlew, snipe, golden and grey plovers, ruff, peregrine, merlin, short-eared owl, raven, rock pipit, kingfisher, winter thrushes and stonechat.

The permanent collection includes flamingos, common cranes and otters. There are 13 hides and a viewing tower from which, on one of our trips, we watched tens of thousands of starlings swirling in to roost at dusk. Extensive visitor facilities include a large restaurant, wildlife art gallery, and gift, book and optics shops. It could be just the place to pick up a few last minute Christmas gifts.

For reserve information Click Here. Admission for non-WWT members will be at the group rate of £10.80, or £8.50 concessions (65 or over, full-time student, unemployed).

Booking is essential: Contact James Aylward on 07974 351 548, or by email

Outings involve a gentle walk, usually no more than three or four miles. Bring binoculars, waterproof clothing, stout footwear, and a packed lunch. We have a few spare pairs of binoculars that can be booked in advanced.

Central London Local Group members - £20.00;
Non-members - £22.00.

Meeting Point:
Coach trip outings start and finish at coach stop 40B on Embankment, which is adjacent to Embankment Tube. Leave the tube by the riverside exit, turn left along the pavement. The coach stop is about 50 metres along, just past the public toilets. The coach leaves promptly at 8am.

For reserve information see: