Tuesday, July 19, 2022

Day 13 June 12 Cute Picture Day - a visit the wetlands in Barnes

Some of my readers know that I love taking photos of wildlife.  Living in the Chesapeake BayWaterhed area is a blessing as there are numerous wetlands within a few minutes drive from my home even though I live in suburbia.
 I chose my Air Bnb because of its proximity to the Walthamstow Wetlands.   I also wanted to visit the WWT London Wetland Centre in Barnes.  I decided the least complicated way to travel to Barnes was to take the Victoria Line to Warren Street, then change to the Northern Line to Waterloo. I walked into the train ticket office to buy a ticket for Barnes. The clerk asked me what travel card I had.  Zones 1-3. 

The 7-day Travel Cards are highly recommended.  

Barnes is Zone 3 ... just like Walthamstow. So no need for a train ticket.   Before getting on the train, I stopped in at M&S to buy yogurt, a banana, and a bottle of water, and then a visit to Costa for a latte.  Breakfast.

I do not need to spend a fortune for a hotel with breakfast.  My Air BnB cost me $1411 for 15 nights!!!! I had my own shelf in the fridge and in one of the cupboards, where I kept a box of cereal for breakfast.

This trip would be centered on the Jubilee and the Garter ceremony. However. I planned three day trips (Harewood, Hardwick, and Hampshire --oops, I mean Penshurst Place) but also I wanted a bit of wildlife action.  I did pack my 150-600 lens and monopod, which were taken out for my visits to the Walthamstow Wetlands and Barnes.

A quick train ride to Barnes and one stop on the bus to the Wetland Centre.   There is an entrance fee.  I paid the Concessions fee (£13.00).  In the UK, Concessions mean a discount (for seniors. etc)  Concessions does not mean the place where you buy popcorn at the movie theater.

As this was my first visit, I also got a sticker to wear ... and I did.  

This wetland centre is also involved with conservation.  Put on your sneakers and let's start walking.  Expect a bit of cuteness overload.  So many varieties of ducks and geese.  The centre notes they have American Wood Ducks.   We call them Wood Ducks.

Some of the photos are not captioned as I cannot identify the wildlife.  

The invasion parakeets (parrots) are in every park in London.  The wetland centre has created safe eating spots for these birds --- the hole in the brick.

Camera alert!   Lady with a funny accent is taking pictures!


Big white duck sitting in the water!

a very handsome duck


Red-breasted goose

Look good, she is heading our way!!!!!

I believe this is a Common Goldeneye duck.

Greater Scaup

Aloha!   This is a Hawaiian Goose.  The centre is involved in a conservation project.

when you get mooned by an Eurasian Jay

This is a baby Coot ... 

So  Coot: mommy and baby

Moorhen and Moorhen chick

Swan and cygnet

ducks (mallards?) & cygnets

Stretching time -- oh the sun feels sooooo good -- ooh  I hear a camera clicking ... 

Tufted Duck (Female) 

There are 13 species of Otters in the world.  Twelve are in danger.  The only otter that is safe is ... the North American River Otter.   This cutie is Asia Small Claw Otter.  The centre has two otters, which are fed several times a day.  One of staff also gives a lovely talk about the otters, who have many things in common with the North American River.   They love to ham it up for the crowd.    These otters are smaller.  The North American River Otters which visit Huntley Meadows in Fairfax County, Virginia, in winter find their own fish!

It must be lunch time!!!!!

I understand.  You want lunch

Hey, look at that lady with the big lens.  I bet she will get good pics of us!

This is a Common Wood Pigeon pretending to be wildlife!!!

Ready for more cuteness!!!!   Mallard ducklings.  

Blue-winged teal

This  Hawaiian goose is telling someone off

Mummy trying to keep her ducks in a row

Is that me?  Gosh. I am handsome 

Blue-winged teal

Moorhen chick

The Wildlife centre has several cafes to enjoy a nice lunch. There is also a souvenir shop where I bought an otter fridge magnet.  Of course, I did.   

Lunch restored my energy for the second trail at the centre but before heading leaving I went back to the first trail again for more photos.

Walk like an Egyptian Goose

The centre is on Queen Elizabeth Walk

 Bus back to the train station and back to Walthamstow.  I decided to have dinner at the Nags Head Pub in Walthamstow Village as a recommended restaurant is closed on Sunday.   This fox was watching and waiting from across the street from the pub.   

The WWTLondon Wetland centre is a day-out adventure.  If you are in London you do not need a car to get to the centre as it is accessible by public transit.  

You do not have to visit a castle or a stately home or a museum every day during a vacation trip to the United Kingdom.  There are days when just have to get outside and spend the day talking to ducks and getting your sneakers wet when you decided to take the rope bridge across a strip of water.   It was a very warm day, so my sneakers and socks dried quickly.

The Wildfowl & Wildlife Trust (WWT) was established in 1946 by Sir Peter Scott, the son of Antarctic explorer, Robert Scott.  The WWT's patron is the Prince of Wales.   

The WWT manages eleven wetland centres in the United Kingdom.    


Christina O. said...

The link you posted for the wetlands has an incredible aerial view of the center. I was surprised to see it's surrounded by urban sprawl! Do you think the wildlife migrates?

The fox was hoping for some Victoria Sponge.

Marlene Eilers Koenig said...

LOndon is big city, this particular wetland is in Barnes which is rather green, across the river, but there are several wetlands areas in London including Walthamstow in east London. the reservoirs in Walthamstow are where London gets much of its water. The filtration system was next door to my Air BNB, which was once the home of the Thames water chief engineer. There are migratory birds in the wetlands just like here. This may be on my list next time
https://www.wildlondon.org.uk/nature-reserves/woodberry-wetlands It is in Hackney London also has so many wonderful parks.

Christina O. said...

The geography is a story in itself...thanks, Marlene!

Marlene Eilers Koenig said...

You are welcome ... I like staying in different neighborhoods