Saturday 18th May 2024

Visit to: Essex Wildlife Trust-Abberton Reservoir.

Location: Abberton Reservoir Nature Discovery Park, Church Rd, Layer-de-la-Haye, Colchester,Essex,CO2 0EU

Time: Meet at the reserve at 10 am.

This location was much loved by our late member Dave Wild. His family had a memorial bench placed in a delightful spot with amazing views across the water. Adjacent to the bench is a meadow specifically created to help the struggling Turtle Dove. A visit here is made more poignant by memories of him and the special times he spent there- a lot of them with his great friend Ian Ballisat.

This is one of Europe’s top wetland sites and is of international importance as a safe haven for wild ducks, swans and other water birds, whether resident, passing through on migration or over-wintering. Visitors can enjoy walks on our nature reserve, whilst taking in stunning panoramic views across the reservoir from the three accessible hides.

Up to 40,000 ducks, swans and geese visit each year and the top seven species are Wigeon, Teal, Mallard, Pochard, Tufted Duck, Coot and Black-headed Gull. Added to this there can be hundreds of Shoveler, Gadwall, Goldeneye, Pintail and Great Crested Grebe.

In the spring there is the unusual sight of Cormorants nesting in trees, one of the few places in Britain where they do this. They began in 1981 and have continued ever since. For the keen birdwatcher the reservoir boasts an impressive list of rarities visiting briefly in winter or passing through on migration.

Price: Donations from non EWT members are requested.