Trip reports

Male snipe singing in the rain

Sunday, 1 September 2019

11 members attended this walk to a new location for the group. After enjoying a bacon and egg sandwich at the Green man they made there way to the lagoons More...

Yellow wagtail in winter wheat

Friday, 28 June 2019

On a pleasant summer evening, 15 people gathered in Ware for the last event of this season. More...

Hobby chasing dragonflies

Sunday, 19 May 2019

Only 17 people were on the coach for the trip up the A1 to Rutland Water, nevertheless with the pleasant weather and some good birds everyone seemed to enjoy the day. More...

Cuckoo perched in tree

Monday, 6 May 2019

Our first 5.00am dawn chorus meeting consisted of a surprisingly large group of 9 outside the closed gates to the Fishers green car park, including a very welcome 3 new to the group outings. More...

Avocet wading in water

Sunday, 14 April 2019

Our first S.E. Herts coach trip of 2019 took us down to RSPB Pagham Harbour in Sussex. Steve Kiln reports. More...

Male green woodpecker feeding on ground

Saturday, 6 April 2019

Thirteen members and two guests met in Notcutts car park on a grey chilly morning - not particularly conducive to good watching. More...

Nuthatch on branch

Saturday, 23 March 2019

A partly cloudy but mild morning saw 8 members meet in the Lodge car park. After a quick look at the feeders by the centre where a Nuthatch was recorded the group set off around the woodpecker trail. More...

Robin sitting in grass

Wednesday, 6 March 2019

Eight people met at the Heartwood car park. The rain experienced earlier and on route had stopped.First stop was by the Scout Hut where little owl is often seen but not by us. We did find our first tits and finches and a fieldfare in a distant tree. More...

Male goldeneye

Sunday, 24 February 2019

The Beached Bird Survey is a long-running conservation effort, with the group monitoring a stretch of the Blackwater estuary in Essex, at Tollesbury. More...

Marsh Harrier (female), close up of head

Saturday, 26 January 2019

Elmley has been privately owned and managed for over 40 years and is both an SSSI and Ramsar site of international importance. The Group first went to Elmley 40 years ago on January 20th 1979 just after the RSPB took over the running of the reserve. More...

Curlew standing on weed, County Cork, Ireland

Sunday, 30 December 2018

The day started with very low cloud and with a slight breeze but warmed up by mid -morning. The 16 members on the walk enjoyed a relaxed walk around the reserve which was comfortably completed in 5 hours. More...

CAR TRIP TO WWT WELNEY AND BURWELL FEN

Saturday, 17 November 2018

The group visited the Wildlife and Wetlands Trust reserve at Welney as the planned trip to the RSPB reserve across the washes had to be re-arranged due to maintenance work being undertaken by the Environment Agency. More...

Male greenfinch perched on rhododendron bush

Sunday, 4 November 2018

This was the first visit of S.E. Herts RSPB to this delightful site. Set in the grounds of Tewin Bury Farm Hotel - a former 17th century farmhouse - the reserve sits alongside the lovely Mimram River, a tributary of the River Lee. More...

Gannet with chick at nest, Bass Rock

Sunday, 28 October 2018

There's a phrase about the best laid plans....... First was the awful weather forecast which didn't stop 8 of us getting to the starting point, but did mean we lost a few (the wisest among us maybe?) during the course of the day. More...

Group Break in Norfolk

Sunday, 14 October 2018

Group Break in Norfolk, Sunday 14th - Wednesday 17th October.11 members enjoyed this 3 night break staying at the Le Strange Arms Hotel, Old Hunstanton. More...

Male blackcap in hawthorn bush

Wednesday, 3 October 2018

On a mainly cloudy, wind less but warm morning 10 people led by Stan Kitchiner walked around Amwell Nature Reserve. More...

Marsh Harrier (female), close up of head

Saturday, 15 September 2018

31 members travelled by coach to Frampton Marsh enjoying a very productive day's birdwatching. More...

Hobby chasing dragonflies

Tuesday, 4 September 2018

For our first event on the 2018/19 programme, 11 members met at LVRP Cornmill Meadows car park for a leisurely walk up Monkhams Hill near Waltham Abbey, on what was initially a rather cool but dry Tuesday morning. More...

Car Trip to the Brecks Saturday 16th June

Saturday, 16 June 2018

14 supporters went on this trip. Weather Dry and breezy. 19degC max. Although it was mainly overcast we did enjoy some warm sunny periods. More...

Stapleford along the Beane

Wednesday, 6 June 2018

On a bright sunny morning with hardly any wind, 17 people led by Stan Kitchiner walked this 2.5 mile footpath which passes through the beautiful Woodhall Park Estate. More...

COACH TRIP to MINSMERE

Saturday, 12 May 2018

Twenty six members split into 3 groups on arrival at the reserve, all armed with the list of things to look out for. The intrepid group, led by Steve, headed for the NT Dunwich Heath reserve in a successful attempt to make sure Dartford warbler was on the day list. More...

Fowlmere

Saturday, 5 May 2018

11 members led by Stan Kitchiner met an hour earlier than usual at 8.30 for this local walk. On arrival the car park was almost full as we found the Cambridge RSPB Group eating breakfast in the picnic area following their 6am start! More...

Car Trip to EWT Fingringhoe Wick & Abberton.

Saturday, 28 April 2018

15 people led by Stan Kitchiner met at a chilly and overcast Fingringhoe Wick reserve on Saturday with the rain threatening to start at any time. More...

Male blackcap in hawthorn bush

Sunday, 8 April 2018

On Sunday morning 9 people including leader Barrie Stockwell met near Royston Sports Centre to start the walk on the heath. More...

Binoculars

Sunday, 25 February 2018

The Beached Bird Survey is a long-running conservation effort, with the group monitoring a stretch of the Blackwater estuary in Essex, at Tollesbury. More...

Marsh Harrier (female), close up of head

Saturday, 17 February 2018

32 members travelled by coach to Hunstanton and Titchwell enjoying a very productive day's birdwatching. More...

Water rail feeding at waters edge

Sunday, 4 February 2018

The closure of the footbridge to the bittern watchpoint meant we spent 10 minutes playing put-and-take with the cars so we could start from Fishers Green and end at Fishers Green Lane car park, rather than do the extra couple of miles detour suggested by the park authorities. More...

Male goldeneye

Sunday, 7 January 2018

14 Supporters joined this trip lead by Phil Blatcher. A festive New Year bring & share lunch was enjoyed at the Point at Tollesbury. More...

Snipe perched on fence post

Saturday, 2 December 2017

A total of 13 members joined the leader, Mike Oakland, for the optional full or half day visits to two of our best known local wildlife reserves, HMWT Amwell Nature Reserve and RSPB Rye Meads. More...

Trip to London Wetland Centre

Saturday, 18 November 2017

We had 12 members and two guests who took various routes to the London Wetland centre in Barnes. More...

KING'S MEADS Local Walk

Sunday, 5 November 2017

16 people gathered in Ware Library car park for a walk on the Meads led by Ted Bell. It was a sunny morning. We walked along the towpath towards Ware lock, where we found a mixed flock of passerines before going on to the Herts & Middx Wildlife Trust reserve. More...

Coach trip to Dungeness

Sunday, 29 October 2017

For our first coach trip of the new programme we travelled south to one of the most popular venues for the group, Dungeness in Kent. More...

Group Break in North Norfolk, 15th to 18th October 2017

Sunday, 15 October 2017

Thirteen supporters enjoyed this break staying at the Le Strange Arms, Old Hunstanton led by Phil Blatcher. More...

male stonechat perched on bramble

Wednesday, 4 October 2017

For our first outdoor event of the season Mike Oakland led a walk around the Gunpowder Park and Sewardstone Marsh on a cloudy and sometimes windy Wednesday morning. 24 members, including 9 newcomers met up at the LVRP Gunpowder Park car park, near Waltham Abbey. More...

Long-tailed tit perched on branch

Sunday, 11 June 2017

Six club members loitered suspiciously in Tesco's carpark until we found Jonathan Forgham who was to take us round part of his local patch of Little Hadham. More...

Male green woodpecker feeding on ground

Sunday, 4 June 2017

On a mainly sunny morning, five people joined leader Barrie Stockwell for a walk around HMWT Hunsdon Mead. More...

Local walk at Fishers Green

Saturday, 6 May 2017

23 attendees, including some new faces, were on the walk led by Stan Kitchiner in anticipation of seeing Nightingales. More...

Nightingale singing

Sunday, 23 April 2017

Well, we heard three nightingales by the time we parked at the visitor centre of this Essex Wildlife Trust reserve - one on the road and two more as we were sorting ourselves out and watching a peregrine fly by - but there were plenty more to come. More...

Group Visit to Skokholm Island

Monday, 17 April 2017

Nine members enjoyed a fantastic week on Skokholm. This is a great time to visit this beautiful island off the south west coast of Wales. More...

Swallow perched on wire fence in Spain

Sunday, 9 April 2017

On a lovely, warm morning, 13 members joined leader Barrie Stockwell for a walk in the beautiful setting of Panshanger Park. More...

Avocet wading in water

Saturday, 18 March 2017

We were glad the trip went ahead after some doubt, there were 25 of us. I checked with the reserve and all hides were open after another inundation this January. More...

Oystercatcher wading in shallow water

Saturday, 4 March 2017

On a quite spring-like day it was lovely that three people new to club walks joined the four stalwarts. More...

Drake teal profile

Sunday, 26 February 2017

The Beached Bird Survey is a long-running example of citizen science, with the group monitoring a stretch of the Blackwater estuary in Essex, at Tollesbury. More...

Ouse Washes

Sunday, 19 February 2017

The RSPB website is a little vague about the Ouse Washes reserve - no map, no list of recent sightings - so the nominated leader was pleased that Barrie knows the area well and was happy to time our walk around the reserve. More...

little egret, wading, water

Sunday, 12 February 2017

Steve Kiln was joined by four others at Lemsford Springs. A disappointing number, but everyone enjoyed it. More...

Goosander on water

Saturday, 7 January 2017

The annual trip to Abberton and Tollesbury was a good start to the year with all 3 sawbills and all 5 winter thrushes seen. More...

Local walk around Fishers Green.

Saturday, 3 December 2016

Five members met up at the Fishers Green car park for this all day winter event led by Mike Oakland. More...

Car Trip to Rutland Water

Saturday, 19 November 2016

Eight members joined the leader, Mike Oakland, to visit Rutland Water Nature Reserve in England's smallest historic county. More...

Stanstead Innings and Rye Meads Local walk

Sunday, 6 November 2016

Vicky Buckel led this Sunday morning walk with 11 participants and they were rewarded with a lovely sunny day and beautiful autumn colours. More...

Car trip to RSPB Rainham Marshes

Sunday, 23 October 2016

On Sunday 23rd October, seven of the group met up for a visit to RSPB Rainham Marshes, the leader by default being Barrie Stockwell. More...

Group Break in North Norfolk, Sunday 16th - Wednesday 19th October

Sunday, 16 October 2016

14 members enjoyed this break organised by Phil Blatcher. We stayed at the Le Strange Arms Hotel, Old Hunstanton. More...

Local walk at Walthamstow Reservoirs

Saturday, 1 October 2016

The Group's first field outing on the new programme was our local walk at Walthamstow Reservoirs in North London led by Mike Oakland. More...

Evening Walk at the RSPB Nature Reserve Rye Meads on Friday 1st July

Friday, 1 July 2016

15 members joined Derrick Ling for the final walk of the Group's 2015/2016 programme. More...

Car Outing to the Lodge, Sandy and Broom Gravel Pits

Saturday, 18 June 2016

This was a re-arranged venue as there was no-one interested in the outing to Harty Ferry.Four members of the group, led by Barrie, met up at the Lodge. More...

Waterford Heath Walk 5th June

Sunday, 5 June 2016

9 people joined Steve Kiln on a walk around Waterford heath and marsh. More...

Hobby chasing dragonflies

Sunday, 15 May 2016

9 members led by Barrie Stockwell met at Lakenheath on a fine day. Garganey had been reported close to the centre so after checking in we climbed the bank to try to find it. More...

Male blackcap in hawthorn bush

Saturday, 7 May 2016

12 members joined Mike Oakland for the annual May walk at Fishers Green near Waltham Abbey. More...

Adult bittern wading in reedbed at Lee Valley Country Park

Saturday, 23 April 2016

On a day when the weather threw virtually everything at us, 32 brave souls endured the cold north wind and scattering of hail and rain showers in between sunny periods. More...

Male green woodpecker feeding on ground

Saturday, 9 April 2016

Spring was definitely sprung as eight club members toured Ellenbrook Fields, the site of the old Hatfield aerodrome. More...

Adult whooper swans feeding in fields

Sunday, 20 March 2016

24 supporters enjoyed a great day out. More...

Heartwood Forest

Sunday, 6 March 2016

Ruth Shinebaum led the walk around Heartwood Forest with seven club members on a cold, muddy but unforecasted sunny day. More...

Staff Matthew Tickner surveying birds at Bann Estuary, Northern Ireland

Sunday, 28 February 2016

The Beached Bird Survey started in 1971. The South-East Herts Group has participated throughout the history of the survey, monitoring a stretch of the Blackwater estuary in Essex, at Tollesbury. More...

Coach Trip to Holkham and RSPB Titchwell

Saturday, 20 February 2016

On Saturday 20 February we enjoyed our annual trip to Holkham and RSPB Titchwell Marsh. Barrie Stockwell led the trip but unfortunately only 20 people attended. The day started at Holkham where we met up with our ex-leader Terry Smith and wife Ann and David Ward, all who now live in Norfolk. More...

Local walk at Fishers Green

Saturday, 6 February 2016

Ted Bell led this walk and seven people met at the car park in Stubbins Hall Lane. We crossed the Old River Lea towards Seventy Acres lake and walked north past the Bittern Information point. More...

Car trip to Abberton and Tollesbury

Saturday, 9 January 2016

Around 20 of the group, led by Barrie Stockwell, met at Abberton Reservoir for our annual trip.We started on the Layer Breton causeway where the birds on view included snipe, barnacle goose, Egyptian goose and goldeneye. More...

Local walk to Amwell & Rye Meads

Sunday, 6 December 2015

A total of 10 supporters joined Mike Oakland for the all day December Local Walk, visiting HMWT Amwell Nature Reserve in the morning and walking around RSPB Rye Meads after lunch, with people choosing either a half day walk or staying for the full day. More...

Car trip to the Brecks and Burwell Fen

Sunday, 22 November 2015

Nine supporters joined Derrick Ling for this car trip to the Brecks and Burwell Fen. We visited Lynford Arboretum & Lakes, Santon Downham and Burwell Fen. More...

Coach outing to Dungeness

Saturday, 24 October 2015

Mike Oakland led the first coach outing of the new season which saw 28 members, including a couple of newcomers, travel to Dungeness in Kent. We had for the most part, an overcast but dry day except for a short, heavy shower around 4pm. More...

Group Break in North Norfolk, Sunday 18th - Tuesday 20th October

Tuesday, 20 October 2015

Phil Blatcher led the Group Break in North Norfolk, Sunday 18th - Tuesday 20th October. We stayed at the Le Strange Arms, Old Hunstanton.13 members were on this break and we were joined by Ann & Terry Smith on the 19th & 20th. More...

Morning walk around Little Hadham

Sunday, 4 October 2015

Jonathan Forgham led this walk around Little Hadham assisted by Toby Spencer. 20 people joined the walk on a gloriously warm and sunny early autumn morning. More...

Evening walk at Connaught Water

Friday, 3 July 2015

Mike Oakland led this walk with three S.E. Herts members at Connaught Water for a pleasant stroll around Epping Forest on a warm summer evening. More...

Coach trip to Minsmere

Sunday, 28 June 2015

Stan Kitchiner led this walk around Minsmere.23 people enjoyed some sunshine but it turned very showery between 12.30 and 3pm before brightening up for the last hour and a half. More...

Local walk at Northaw Great Wood

Sunday, 7 June 2015

5 people enjoyed the walk in warm weather with a mainly clear blue sky, but the trees were in full leaf making it difficult to spot the birds we had identified by their calls. More...

Morning walk at Fishers Green for nightingales and warblers

Sunday, 10 May 2015

Nightingales - none seen but about 4-5 were heard, numbers are much lower this year. 9sp of warblers were found. More...

Group weekend in Dorset

Monday, 4 May 2015

The weekend started with most of the 23 participants meeting up at Ham Common on the North side of Poole Harbour. It was dry but overcast and the almost guaranteed Dartford warbler was ... an almost. A good variety of other birds were seen including finches and warblers and some waders but mostly distant. It provided a pleasant walk with great views over the harbour and the Arne peninsular. More...

Willow warbler

Wednesday, 29 April 2015

Today 9 supporters joined Terry & Ann on this last fundraising walk. It was very wet for most of the walk with just a glimpse of sunshine. Many thanks to Terry for leading these walk over the past 17 years, and to everyone who has supported them during this time. More...

Coach trip to Rutland Water

Sunday, 26 April 2015

29 supporters enjoyed the trip to this popular reserve, 87sp were found. More...

Local walk around Therfield Heath

Sunday, 12 April 2015

The highlight on the bird front was seeing a ring ouzel scurrying around a valley in the golf course, its white band glistening. The warblers are coming: - 3 or more blackcaps in the wood by the pasque flower layby on the Royston side, chiffchaffs singing in Fox Covert wood and a willow warbler announcing its arrival singing on the Old Rifle Range. More...

Chiffchaff standing on gorse

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

We all had excellent views of a drake goosander. Chiff chaffs and skylarks were singing - must be spring soon! More...

Morning walk at RSPB Fowlmere, Cambs

Sunday, 1 March 2015

The group didn't see the merlin or barn owl but found the shelduck at the reedbed hide. There were several trout in the stream on the return leg affording a discussion of the finer points of fish ID! More...

Fundraising walk at Fishers Green

Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Several pairs of great crested grebes were seen displaying, we had good views of a pair of goosander and a pair of goldeneye on Holyfield Lake. 42 species found in all. More...

Curlew standing on weed, County Cork, Ireland

Sunday, 22 February 2015

The South-East Herts Group has been participating in the Beached Bird survey for many years, monitoring a stretch of the Blackwater estuary in Essex, at Tollesbury, this year the survey took place on Sunday 22nd February. More...

Local walk around HMWT Amwell reserve

Sunday, 1 February 2015

Well-wrapped up against the cold, 6 members strolled slowly around the Amwell reserve. 42 species were found, the male smew was the best bird of the day, closely followed by the female goldeneye, close enough to the hide to admire every feather. More...

Water rail feeding at waters edge

Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Several pairs of great crested grebes started to display to each other but soon lost interest! We found our first primrose of the year along the channel. Only 37sp of birds were found due to the wet and windy weather. More...

Chiffchaff standing on gorse

Sunday, 18 January 2015

Plenty of wildfowl at both places and a surprise chiffchaff displaying very close at Wilstone. We also had an intriguing 'Scaup' but fortunately Mick Oakland had seen on the website yesterday that it was a tufted duck / pochard hybrid. 53sp seen in total. More...

Fundraising walk around Holyfield Hall farm and looking over 70 Acres lake, Fishers Green

Wednesday, 7 January 2015

47sp were found. A male goosander was seen on 70 acres lake, and finally, we saw a bittern in the reedbed in front of the Bittern Info Point hide. More...

male stonechat perched on bramble

Monday, 5 January 2015

Despite the drab weather we managed to see 60 species and had an enjoyable day. The EWT Visitor Centre at Abberton is a delight, although we could barely see the reservoir through the mist. The toilets by the Tollesbury car park are now open 09:00 to 17:00 - very welcome! More...

Male goldeneye

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Terry found a peregrine on pylon no 5, we saw a drake goldeneye on the lake and a distant buzzard from the Grebe hide. An elusive goldcrest was finally found, several fieldfare were feeding in the bushes along the channel, and several little grebe were seen in the channel. More...

Bittern walking on edge of reedbed

Sunday, 7 December 2014

Highlights: peregrine on pylon from Grebe hide, red headed smew on the lake, male goldeneye on the way back to the weir. On the farm, a large mixed flock of finches feeding on the Quinoa game crop, with redwings, blackbirds and hunting sparrowhawk, about 50 pied wagtails on the ploughed field nearby. We finished with a Bittern, roosting up in the reeds at 70 Acres. More...

Goosander on water

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Todays highlight were our first goosander of the winter - a drake and 2 redheads on Friday Lake. 37 specieswere seen by the group. More...

Morning walk at Tyttenhanger Gravel Pits

Sunday, 2 November 2014

One brave soul, Steve Kiln, joined Barrie for the local walk at Tyttenhanger. The rain was coming down steadily as we set off towards the farm where tree sparrows are often seen. Nothing was showing much today and the few small birds around the farm were hard to make out through wet and steamed up glasses and bins More...

Norfolk Break 26 - 28th October 2014

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Phil Blatcher led our annual break in North Norfolk, 111sp were found by the group including surf scoter, great white egret, rough-legged buzzard and grey phalarope. More...

Long-tailed tit perched on branch

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Small flocks of tits and finches (which included goldcrest, treecreeper and siskin) were seen flying along the bushes. Fallow Deer were heard 'bellowing' as the rutting season had just started, and eventually a small herd were seen at a distance. More...

Wheatear in spring

Sunday, 5 October 2014

Despite the lovely weather nobody turned up on Mike's walk. Although he reported that he had a nice walk through Walthamstow Marsh to the Waterworks Nature Reserve and Middlesex Filter Beds. More...

Avocet wading in water

Sunday, 14 September 2014

A small group of supporters joined Barrie Stockwell for a visit to North Kent Marshes. Meeting at RSPB Cliffe Pools, the group looked over the many areas of water. A walk to Radar Pool allowed us closer views of several hundred mallards and a flock of at least 300 avocets. More...

Coach trip to RSPB Strumpshaw Fen reserve, Norfolk

Saturday, 28 June 2014

Good views of bittern landing close to the Fen hide and then flying across the reeds several times. Barn owl seen from the Tower hide, lots of marsh harriers, several buzzards and hobby and kingfisher. More...

Evening walk at HMWT Willowmead and Hertingfordbury

Friday, 27 June 2014

After giving a brief history of Willowmead and his part in establishing it, Barrie led a circular walk to point out the areas of interest. On lifting one of the reptile mats on the reserve a writhing mass was seen of at least 8 slow-worms and 2 grass snakes. More...

Morning Walk around Standon Green End Farm

Sunday, 1 June 2014

The birding highlight of the day was the raven heard by several people. Tony said that a family group had spent most of the previous day on the farm, so they are nesting in the area. Our walk finished off with a visit to the balloon stone situated at the spot where in 1784 Vincent Lunardi finally 'revisited earth' after the first ever balloon flight in this country. More...

Dartford warbler perching on heather

Sunday, 18 May 2014

Highlights were Dartford warblers and stonechat found at Dunwich Heath, on the reserve, bittern, spoonbill, Marsh harriers and bearded tits were all found, and a stone curlew was seen through the heat haze. More...

Cuckoo perched in tree

Wednesday, 14 May 2014

16 supporters joined Terry & Ann on a warm and sunny morning at Fishers Green. This was the final fundraising walk of this season, 92sp were found in total this year. More...