Hanningfield Water at Hanningfield Reservoir - the birdwatchers paradise

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Giffords Lane


Essex, CM3 8HX

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Visitor Centre

Hawkswood Road, Downham


Essex, CM11 1WT



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We have identified above 15 variety of birds and water fowl which you may see at Hanningfield Water

Pop along to Hanningfield Reservoir with a grown up, find one of the bird hides, sit down for 30 minutes and see what birds you can spot.

To help you, if you click HERE, you can download a chart with all the birds you see on the right so that you can mark off those which you see and save them in a folder for your next visit, to compare what you spotted.

To enlarge an image, place your mouse arrow over the image you wish to enlarge.

Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)

Large, white; orange and black bill

Canada Geese (Branta canadensis)

Large size, pale belly, dark neck and head with white face-patch

Teal (Anas crecca)

Male has chestnut and blue-green head pattern; female has green speculum

Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos)

Male has bottle-green head; female has large size, orange-yellow bill

Shoveler (Anas clypeata)

Huge bill; male has white breast, green head, brown flanks

Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)

Male has black and white plumage; female has slight tuft on back of head.

Little Grebe (Tachybaptus ruficollis)

Small size, fluffy rear end

Great Crested Grebe (Podiceps crisatus)

Prominent orange crest (in breeding season only)

Grey Heron (Ardea cinerea)

Large size; grey plumage

Coot (Fulica atra)

Black plumage; white bill

Moorhen (Gallinula chioropus)

Red and yellow  bill; white undertail

Common Snipe Gallinago gallinago)

Short legs, long bill.

Common Sandpiper (Actitis hypoleucos)

Dumpy shape, short bill.

The RSPB have a great variety of Classroom teaching and Outdoor resource kits and “Spotting” sheets.

We do not wish to contravene their copyright, so if ou would like to see them and then download the information, please click anywhere on this banner.

Spotting Form

After you have been to Hanningfield Reservoir and have noted all the birds which you have spotted, if you have time, please complete our Spotting Form and Submit it to us.

We have listed the birds in the same order at the photographs you see on the right.

If you have spotted more than one bird, after selecting the first bird, on your PC hold down the keyboard “Ctrl” key, this will allow you to make more selections.

You don’t have to restrict yourself just to the birds who live near, swim or build their nests around Hanningfield Water.

Remember there are lots of other birds in the wooded areas, and also lots of other creatures and insects to spot and watch.

We can link you through directly to the Species Explorer of the Wildlife Trust so click anywhere in this panel to goto their website.

Wildlife Ringtones

To listen to each sound clip click on the links below. To download the clips to your own computer right click on the link and choose 'Save Target As'. Once it is on your own computer you can transfer it to your mobile phone. Sound clips kindly provided by the Wildlife Sound Recording Society

There’s lots more ringtones and things to do at Wildlife Watch.

Download more of the Spotting Sheets for lots of wildlife and enter the competitions and take part in the activities. Click on the Wildlife Watch banner for their website.

Guess what I spotted at Hanningfield Reservoir?

After pressing Submit you may be asked to type into a box the two words you see displayed


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