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The heron like Bittern in flight

Lee Valley’s Bittern Roost Watch returns

Release date: 

29 January 2024

Inviting wildlife enthusiasts to join the Bittern Roost Watch in River Lee Country Park on Sunday 4 February.

Lee Valley Regional Park Authority’s conservation team is inviting wildlife enthusiasts to join them for the Bittern Roost Watch in River Lee Country Park on Sunday 4 February to help track the Bittern.

The typically elusive Bittern has been showing well in recent days with up to three spotted in front of the Wildlife Discovery Centre.

This free event will begin with a short walk from Fishers Green car park and a talk overlooking Seventy Acres Lake before heading into the Wildlife Discovery Centre to warm up with a hot drink while watching out for Bittern roosting in the reedbed. As with all wildlife watching, there’s no guarantee that the Bittern will show on the night, but there should be plenty of other wildlife to keep visitors entertained while they watch, along with information about the Bittern and the ongoing work that takes place in the park for these incredible birds and other wetland wildlife.

Set overlooking Seventy Acres Lake, the Wildlife Discovery Centre is one of the best places in the country to see wintering Bittern, a member of the Heron family that returns to overwinter in the valley’s reedbeds, alongside other winter visitors including Teal, the UK’s smallest duck and the impressive Smew.

The Roost Watch will take place in the Bittern hide at the centre which offers the perfect viewpoint over the reedbeds. The centre also boasts wildlife cameras with live, up-close footage and a five metre viewing tower with 360 degree views of the surrounding area.

Participants are advised to bring binoculars, a torch and wear warm clothes. Refreshments will be provided.

Event summary

What:  Bittern Roost Watch

When:  Sunday 4 February, 15:45 - dusk

Where: River Lee Country Park, Fishers Green. Meet at Fishers Green car park, Stubbins Hall

Lane, Waltham Abbey EN9 2EF (parking charges apply)

Cost:  FREE

Other information

  • Please check before heading off in case of any last minute changes due to the weather

  • The walk from Fishers Green car park to the hide is approximately 200m on flat ground

  • We would encourage visitors to bring a reusable cup for drinks if they have one


For more information, or hi-res images contact

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