Birds of Wanstead Flats

The birds that have been sighted on, from and around Wanstead Flats are listed here.

Those shown bold are thought to breed on Wanstead Flats, those in italics are escapes, infrequent visitors, or uncommon now.

For listing from 1974-1980 click hereFor comparative reports for 1980 and 2000 click here top

Little Grebe Breeds on Alexandra Lake
Great Crested Grebe Breeds on Alexandra Lake
Cormorant Occasionally uses Alexandra Lake and Jubilee Pond
Grey Heron Often seen flying over; occasionaly by lakes
Egyptian Goose Escaped birds have lived on Alexandra Lake
Canada Goose Up to 200 on and around lakes
Greylag Goose On Alexandra Lake, has bred
Barnacle Goose Sometimes on Alexandra Lake
Mute Swan Breeds on Alexandra Lake
Mallard Breeds on Alexandra Lake
Teal Infrequent visitor until about 2005, then up to 14 seen on numerous occasions during the winter and a pair in spring of 2006.
Gadwall Fairly common in winter on Alexandra Lake
Wigeon Uncommon
Shoveler Fairly common mainly in winter on Alexandra Lake
Red-crested Pochard An escape has been seen on Alexandra Lake
Pochard Sometimes seen on Alexandra Lake
Tufted Duck Has bred on Alexandra Lake
Goldeneye Has been seen on Alexandra Lake
Ruddy Duck A pair bred and had three young on Alexandra Lake in 2001
Sparrowhawk Common
Buzzard Has been sighted overhead
Hobby Uses Wanstead Flats for feeding
Kestrel Common
Moorhen Breeds on Alexandra Lake
Coot Breeds on Alexandra Lake
Lapwing Sometimes seen flying over
Common Sandpiper Occurs infrequently by Alexandra Lake
Black-headed Gull Common - hundreds at times on the playing fields
Lesser Black-backed Gull Fairly Common
Mediterranean Gull Occasional individuals
Common Gull Common - slightly less numerous than Black-headed Gulls
Herring Gull Increasing in small numbers
Common Tern Occasionaly uses Alexandra Lake
Wood Pigeon Common
Feral Pigeon Common, particularly on car park by Alexandra Lake
Collared Dove Common
Cuckoo Usually heard for a few days each Spring
Tawny Owl Less common now - has bred in adjacent Manor Park and City of London Cemeteries
Swift Common, breed in nearby Wanstead Park Avenue
Kingfisher Seen occasionaly on Alexandra Lake
Wryneck The only record is of a bird on Wanstead Flats in September 2010
Green Woodpecker Sometimes seen and heard
Greater Spotted Woodpecker Sometimes seen and heard
Lesser Spotted Woodpecker Uncommon, but did breed in 2010
Skylark Common with good breeding success
Sand Martin Passage in Spring and Autumn
Swallow Passage in Spring and Autumn with some during the Summer feeding over Flats
House Martin Much less common now; used to breed on many houses adjacent.
Meadow Pipit Small numbers in winter and summer
Yellow Wagtail Uncommon =- more often seen or heard flying over
Grey Wagtail Occasional by Alexandra Lake
Pied Wagtail Breeds by Alexandra Lake
Wren Common
Dunnock Common in gardens adjacent to Flats
Sedge Warbler Occasionaly heard singing in Spring from Alexandra Lake
Blackcap Common; seen throughout winter in gardens adjacent to Flats
Lesser Whitethroat Uncommon
Whitethroat Fairly common
Dartford Warbler The first record of this species was one bird on 31st October.
Willow Warbler Uncommon
Chiffchaff Common in Wanstead Park, gardens and on islands of Alexandra Lake
Firecrest Has been seen in gardens adjacent to Wanstead Flats
Goldcrest Fairly common in gardens adjacent to Flats mainly in Winter
Spotted Flycatcher Occasional - less common now.
Whinchat Small numbers in Summer on Wanstead Flats
Stonechat Small numbers on Wanstead Flats
Wheatear Passage in Spring and Autumn
Ring Ouzel One or two reports of birds on migration on Wanstead Flats
Robin Common
Fieldfare Fairly common in some winters
Blackbird Common
Redwing Fairly common in some winters
Song Thrush Less common now
Mistle Thrush Common
Long-tailed Tit Common
Coal Tit Fairly common in gardens adjacent to Flats
Blue Tit Common
Great Tit Common
Nuthatch Uncommon
Treecreeper Uncommon
Yellowhammer Uncommon
Reed Bunting Uncommon
Chaffinch Fairly common
Greenfinch Less common now
Siskin Has been seen by Alexandra Lake, but rare
Goldfinch Less common now
Linnet Uncommon
Redpoll Uncommon
Bullfinch Less common now
House Sparrow Common
Starling Common - sometimes in hundreds
Jay Common
Magpie Common
Jackdaw Increasing, particularly around Alexandra Lake
Carrion Crow Common - over a hundred may be counted at times