Fallow Stag, Knowle Park.

Fallow Stag, Knowle Park.

Wednesday, 19 January 2011

** Sevenoaks Wildfowl Reserve.**

It was nice to go put on such a bright sunny day, even if it was a fresh 3c. I thought it was about time I paid KWT Sevenoaks Wildfowl Reserve a visit, seeing as I keep reading so much about it lately.
We arrived late morning, and the car park was almost full, but that was mainly due to  a RSPB walk for the older birder. I don't know how long it had been arranged, but the lady in the visiting centre wasn't too pleased because she had no prior warning of them visiting, which all parties normally do.
I concentrated on the area from the Public Hide down to the Tower Hide/Sutton Hide, as I was told that is where I would see more birds. next time I will do the other part.
I left my scope and tripod in the car, and took the camera with me instead. Once in the Public Hide I started to make my daily list  which consisted of: Mallard, Coot, Common Gulls and B/H/Gulls in good numbers, Grey Heron, Cormorant, Lapwing(numerous), Snipe(37), Magpie, Dabchick, G/C/Grebe,Teal(numerous),Mute Swan, Canada Geese, Greylag Geese, Goosander(2f),Gadwall.
Many of the male wildfowl was courtship displaying to the females.
From here I wandered on towards the Tower Hide/Sutton Hide, and on the way I added Wigeon, Tufted Duck, and Pochard to the list.
Of all the years I have been coming here this is the first time I have ever been to these hides, why not before this........God knows!
Once there I was shocked at just how small the hides shutters are, I have never opened so many shutters in a hide before. When I eventually got down to birding the first bird I saw was a Egyptian Goose just out in front, which all it wanted to do was to have a wash and brush up.

Shortly after this a small flock of Barnacle Geese came swimming past

There was also a odd white Goose swimming around with the Greylag Geese, and Canada Geese.

A few  of the Geese took to flight, now not being very good at trying to photograph flying birds I thought I would give it a go, the shot below turned out better that I expected.

I left this hide and had a look in the other 2 hides close by. Nothing different was seen from here, only what I presume was the same 2 female Goosanders.There was no sign of a Bittern in the reeded area's.
After leaving the newest hide, next to the Kingfisher Hide I met Greenie's(Greenie of http://www.greenieinthewild.blogspot.com/ ) friendly Robin sitting on the bench waiting for me. Next time I will have to bring it some food,

The other species of bird seen on my travels was: Great Spotted Woodpecker, Blackbird  Blue Tit, Great Tit, Long Tailed Tit, Wren, C/Crow, Jackdaw, C/Dove, W/Pigeon, Chaffinch. Then just as I passed the Public Hide a couple of small birds, high up in the tree's took my attention,as soon as I got my bins on them I knew exactly what they was, 2 Lesser Redpolls. What a delight it was to see a couple of birds that I don't see very often.
Once back at the car and a cup of coffee later, before leaving for home I thought I would spend a little while in the hide by the Visiting Centre To see what birds was hanging around the 2 hanging feeders. I suppose I was about 5 feet away from them. The main visitors was Blue Tit's(see below)

Great Tit's.

                                                       Long Tailed Tit's.

The final 2 species I saw was a Dunnock sculking in the undergrowth, and a Treecreeper keeping a low profile.
So all in all it was a very pleasant and rewarding walk around, and I will notbe leaving so long again before my next visit.

My 'Bird of the day' is the ** Lesser Redpoll.**


  1. Looks as though you had a good day Ken. I must spread my wings a bit and venture down your way. Nothing much seems to appear around Horsham.

  2. You sure did get some very striking photos. It is so nice to see sunshine too.

  3. Ken ,
    Glad you finally made it to SWR , and that my 'red breasted mate' was at the last hide to say hello .
    Pleased that you enjoyed your visit and had some good sightings , especially the Redpolls , but surprised that the large Siskins flocks didn't show .
    THere have been 4 redhead Goosanders on site , so you might have spotted all of them .
    Hope you don't leave it so long next time .

  4. Hi Ken,sounds like you had a nice day out,at least we now know where our occasional visits from Barnacle Geese come from.

  5. Nice little birds those Redpoll Ken, well spotted :-)

  6. Good stuff Ken and some great pics, really like the LTT's.
    Will go again myself soon as it was all iced over and a bit busy when I last went. Nice to get the Lesser Redpolls!

  7. Mike.
    It was a lovely day thanks.

    Youe right, it was nice to see the sunshine. and thanks for your kind comment.

    How could I not pay it a visit after your good postings about it. No one spotted the Siskins that day.

    It was a great day thanks.

    It was good to find the Lesser Redpols. Pity they wasn't a bit ower down.

    Glad you liked some of the photo's. You really must go as soon as you can on a nice day.

  8. Hi Ken, not sure what happened last night, but I did write a comment on your blog, I wonder were that went to?...I'll try again then.
    Some nice photos there mate, and we have noticed that that Robin is very friendly, my son holds out his arm because he is hoping the Robin will perch on it, it gets that close to him.
    Could that white goose be a Greylag, it certainly looks like one to me, maybe its just a predominately white/ almost albino one?