Local wild places

When it comes to birdwatching, London might not be the first place that springs to mind. However, the capital is a wonderful destination to see and hear some of the UK’s most remarkable birds.

Over 370 species of birds have been recorded in London at different times of the year. Some are year-round residents while others migrate from as far away as Siberia or sub-Saharan Africa. Birds are good at adapting, which enables them to thrive in urban metropolises like London. They become tolerant of humans passing close to their nests, most of them aren’t bothered by streetlights and traffic noise only makes them sing louder.

But where are the best places to go birdwatching in London? Local parks are a good place to start, then there are cemeteries, public gardens, nature reserves, canals and riverbanks. Here are a few of our favourite locations.

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  • Free entry
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Firecrest, Wiltshire, March (Ben Andrew, (rspb-images.com)

Abney Park Cemetery

Goldcrest, Bedfordshire, April
(Ben Andrew, rspb-images.com)

Alexandra Park

Lapwing flock, RSPB Frampton Marsh Nature Reserve, Lincolnshire, February (Ben Andrew, rspb-images.com)

Amwell Gravel Pits

Painted lady butterfly on Michaelmas daisy, The Lodge RSPB reserve, Bedfordshire (Chris Gomersall, rspb-images.com)

Barn Hill and Fryent Park

Lapwing flock, RSPB Frampton Marsh Nature Reserve, Lincolnshire, February (Ben Andrew, rspb-images.com)

Beddington Farmlands

Kingfisher, Hertfordshire, November (Ben Andrew, rspb-images.com)

Bedfont Lakes

Water rail, RSPB Lakenheath Fen, Suffolk, January (Ben Andrew, rspb-images.com)

Berwick Ponds

Water rail, RSPB Lakenheath Fen, Suffolk, January (Ben Andrew, rspb-images.com)

Brent Reservoirs