Trip Report: Tollesbury Wick (Essex Wildlife Trust) – 6 November 2021

After the long lockdown, we finally resumed our bird watching walks with a trip to Tollesbury Wick. Fifteen hardy souls turned up to brave the elements and enjoy the walk and it was great to see some new faces.

Tollesbury Wick is a 600 acre site and a rare example of an Essex fresh water grazing marsh lying on the edge of the Blackwater Estuary National Nature Reserve. It has been worked for decades by traditional methods sympathetic to wildlife.

From the car park we followed the public footpath past Tollesbury Marina onto the sea wall. In the nature reserve we saw greylag geese. In the borrow dykes there were little grebes and little egrets. In the grassland and shrubs we saw an assortment of meadow pipits, skylarks, pied wagtails and stonechats.

The tide was rising and there was plenty of activity on the saltings and mudflats with good numbers of dark bellied brent geese, widgeon, teal and redshank. In the distance we could see avocets and shelducks. A marsh harrier made several flybys causing ducks, lapwings and curlews to take to the air.

Whilst dry, the cold easterly breeze eventually began to bite and with the cobwebs blown away we finished at lunchtime, some retiring to the café for hot food and drink.

A total of 30 species were recorded during our visit namely:-

Brent Goose
Greylag Goose
Canada Goose
Shelduck
Gadwall
Mallard
Teal
Wigeon
Curlew
Lapwing
Avocet
Redshank
Little Egret
Black-headed Gull
Herring Gull
Kestrel
Marsh Harrier
Wood Pigeon
House Sparrow
Pied Wagtail
Skylark
Meadow Pipit
Stonechat
Blue Tit
Great Tit
Goldfinch
Linnet
Magpie
Crow
Grey Heron