UK Wildlife Walks & Tours

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2021  

Walks & Tours Calendar – for details see further down. It is highly likely that more Naturetrek day walks will be added regularly.

January  [CANCELLED]

February [CANCELLED]

March  31 (Naturetrek Colne)

April 03, 07, 21, 30 (Naturetrek Naze); 10, 12 (WildWivenhoe); 13 (#BringingingNatureToYOU Brightlingsea); 14 (Greenwings Sandlings); 16, 26 (Naturetrek Colne)

May 05, 08, 14 (Naturetrek Naze); 11, 18, 31(Naturetrek Colne); 15, 17 (WildWivenhoe); 24-28 (Honeyguide Wild Essex)

June 04 (WildBrightlingsea); 05 (BringingNatureToYou, Wivenhoe); 09 (Greenwings Sandlings);  13,14 (WildWivenhoe); 16, 22, 28 (Naturetrek Hockley); 25 (WildBrightlingsea)

July 06 (Naturetrek Colne); 10,12 (WildWivenhoe); 13 (Greenwings Sandlings); 17 (Beth Chatto Insects); 26 (Naturetrek Naze)

August 02, 16, 24 (Naturetrek Colne); 07, 09 (WildWivenhoe); 10 (Greenwings Sandlings); 11 (WildStour);18 (BringingNatureToYou, Chalkney)

September 18,20 (WildWivenhoe); 22 (Naturetrek Naze); 24 (WildBrightlingsea)

October 06-13 (????Honeyguide Menorca?????); 15 (Greenwings Sandlings); 18-22 (Greenwings Essex); 23 (WildWivenhoe)

November 29 (WildWivenhoe, awayday @ the Naze)

December

For details of overseas tours, with links to past reports, see Overseas Tours tab.

For details of talks, which are not listed above, please see Talks tab.

With Covid19 still rampant at the start of the year, obviously all the planned activities are open to modification and cancellation at short notice, and initially at least, all will be restricted to groups of maximum five, until advice changes and common sense permits I will endeavour to keep this listing as up to date as possible.

The activities are grouped into the following themes:

#WildWivenhoe – our monthly, usually one or two-hour, Saturday/Monday walks round Wivenhoe aimed at interested local people. Sadly only two were possible in 2020, in August and September: we hope to reconvene properly in 2021, probably from April. Please contact Jude on jmgibson1959@btinternet.com for further details and get on our mailing list. Cost £10pp for two-hour session

Current proposed dates are April 10 & 12 (King George’s Field); May 15 & 17 (Old Cemetery); June 13 & 14; July 10 & 12; August 7 & 9; plus others to be confirmed

#WildWivenhoeAwaydays – as above, but infrequent, usually longer, explorations of places away from home. See here, in September 2020. Please contact Jude on jmgibson1959@btinternet.com for further details and get on our mailing list.

#WildBrightlingsea – from 2021, we hope to extend the local walks to Brightlingsea, with three being planned initially: May 21, June 25, September 24

Links to blog reports of #WildWivenhoe Bug&Botany group walks and awaydays:

2021 April

2020: January February(awayday) August September September(awayday)

2019: March April May June June(awayday)July August September October November

2018: April  May June  July  August  September October

#BringingNatureToYou – the offer of bespoke small parties, focussing on the things that interest the group or family, whenever and wherever (within reason!) we are asked to. All is negotiable! Two in Autumn 2020 were a couple of hours exploring the exciting bugs around the KGV (aimed at children) and a general introduction to wildlife of Lower Wivenhoe for a group of friends. Please contact Jude on jmgibson1959@btinternet.com for further details and get on our mailing list.

If a group of you would like the opportunity to explore nature on your doorstep, e.g. in your local woodland, park, nature trail or in your own garden we would love to  meet you there and see what we can find together!  We can cover the whole nature thing – from plants to invertebrates, birds to geology, not forgetting fungi and fossils – and can focus on whatever interests you the most.

These tailor-made events need not be restricted to Wivenhoe – we would happily visit anywhere within a reasonable distance.  Nor be restricted to the summer months –  there is lots to discover all the year round!

We have come up with the following pricing structure as a rough guide… 

Family (up to 2 adults plus up to 3 children) £15 per hour

Adults (up to 4, or more if Covid restrictions permit) £5 per person per hour (minimum £15).   

We would set and agree a fee at the outset.  Should  there be many miles to travel this may incur an additional cost.

How about a moth-trapping/bat-detecting evening in your garden (suggest £25 for a full evening plus morning ‘unveil’ – if appropriate).  May to September only.  Or help with planning a wildlife garden?   We could certainly come up with some suggestions to help you to this end.  Again, price to be agreed.

Should ‘Birds, birds, birds’ be your bag,  then we can thoroughly recommend the services of our friend and expert birder Glyn Evans.  We will forward any such requests directly to him.

This service is also being advertised to residents of the Wivenhoe House Hotel – see here

As and when mixing in enclosed spaces is again possible and advisable, we will continue to offer indoor talks, botanical identification (with keys), winter tree, and insect identification events…

#WildSideOfEssex – full day wildlife-watching walks around Wivenhoe & the Colne Estuary, and The Naze & the Walton Backwaters with Naturetrek. These started in August 2021 and are likely to be a regular feature in the future according to demand. Dates are currently set until the end of May 2021:

https://www.naturetrek.co.uk/tours/the-wild-side-of-essex-autumn-in-the-colne-estuary

https://www.naturetrek.co.uk/tours/the-wild-side-of-essex-the-naze-and-the-walton-backwaters-day-trip

And recently added is a new day walk, to see Heath Fritillaries in Hockley Woods

https://www.naturetrek.co.uk/tours/heath-fritillaries-hockley-woods-essex-day-trip

Blogs of previous day walks:

2021: March/April (Colne) April(Naze)

2020: August(Colne)   September (Colne)   October(Colne)   October(Naze)   December (Colne & Naze)

#WildSandlings – full day wildlife-watching walks in the southern Suffolk Sandlings with Greenwings. After the first in September 2020, we are offering a series of six in 2021, all to the same area, to see the Southern Sandlings through the Seasons:

FEB: The Blasted Heath and the Wild North Sea – winter birds and atmospheric landscapes[CANCELLED] APRIL: Spring steals in – Woodlarks singing at their best, spring flowers of the woods, and the first emerging insects JUNE:  Nightjar time (probably starting  after lunch, and culminating in an evening on the heath) JULY: High summer – heaths and shingle at their most flowery and insect-rich AUGUST: Heather at its best, insects everywhere OCTOBER: The year has turned full circle: Autumn colours on the heaths, (hopefully) fungi galore and arrival of the winter birds.

A Year in the south Suffolk Sandlings: The Blasted Heath & the Wild North Sea – Greenwings Wildlife Holidays  [CANCELLED DUE TO CORONAVIRUS]

A Year in the south Suffolk Sandlings: Spring Steals In – Greenwings Wildlife Holidays

A Year in the south Suffolk Sandlings: Nightjar Time – Greenwings Wildlife Holidays

A Year in the south Suffolk Sandlings: High Summer – Greenwings Wildlife Holidays

A Year in the south Suffolk Sandlings: Heather at its Best – Greenwings Wildlife Holidays

A Year in the southern Suffolk Sandlings: Autumn Colours – Greenwings Wildlife Holidays

#ExploringEssex  – a five-day exploration of the autumn wildlife of north-east Essex based at Wivenhoe House Hotel with Greenwings in mid October

#BethChattoBugs&Beastiespostponed from 2020, we hope to be running an Invertebrate Identification Workshop in conjunction with the Beth Chatto Gardens, Elmstead Market, Essex on 17 July 2021, all day, starting with the fruits of a previous night’s moth trapping. Getting to know your Garden Invertebrates– see  bethchatto.co.uk/courses for details and booking.

On the blogs tab, use the filter to select Beth Chatto Gardens blogs of which there are many!

#WildEssex –  a North Essex wildlife extravaganza with Honeyguide, based around four nights in May at the Wivenhoe Park Hotel. WildEssex

We may add further versions of this later in the year.

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ARCHIVED EVENTS: if anything we have done previously is not part of our current offer and would interest you, please feel free to discuss with us! A few examples are given below….

SMALL GROUP LECTURES

Gardening with Wildlife in Mind is the one we have presented so far, before Covid intervened

TREE IDENTIFICATION WORKSHOPS

Sessions in the classroom with pressed specimens, and in the field looking at winter twigs

BOTANICAL IDENTIFICATION WORKSHOPS

A short series of classroom-based workshops looking into the inner workings of some of our local plants and learning how to identify them with the aid of keys and books.

Content: The first session will be a basic introduction to flower parts, nomenclature and classification.  We will show you different methods of identifying plants through visual / written keys of various sorts.  There will be a chance to work on a simple sample of flowers.  The second and third sessions will be in more detail, revising what was learnt in Week one and focusing on (Week two) Flowering plants and (Week three) Grasses, sedges, rushes, ferns, and it would be very advisable to attend Week One to get maximum out of Weeks two and / or three.

INTRODUCTION TO THE WALKS, FROM 2018

This year, we are hoping to complement Richard Allen’s popular Bird Walks in Wivenhoe (see http://www.richardallenillustrator.com/) with a series of Wildlife Walks, to focus on the botanical and entomological riches of the  area. 

Note that we will not be sending out details of these walks via the regular Wivenhoe Watching Wildlife mailing list. Jude will be maintaining the Botany & Bug Walk mailing list and handling bookings for the walks: if you would like to be on that mailing list please contact her on jmgibson1959@btinternet.com. And please feel free to pass this onto anyone else who may be interested. 

Hoping to see some of you in the coming months…