Sevenoaks Wildlife Reserve
Located near the centre of town, this tranquil nature reserve is perfect for birdwatching. There are calm lakes, woodland and marshes. It also has an excellent visitor centre and elemental gardens. To understand more, click here.
The reserve was the first example of a gravel pit site being developed for nature conservation and is home to a diverse mix of birds, dragonflies, damselflies and other wildlife. So far well over two thousand species have been identified and more are regularly added to the list.
Visitors can explore the reserve in a variety of ways, including by car, foot and bicycle. The Jeffrey Harrison Visitor Centre has been the starting point for thousands of visitors since 1987 and houses displays illustrating the prehistory and history of the site, the creation of the reserve, its habitats and the wildlife that they support.
There is also a series of touch tables where visitors can handle items from the site’s natural heritage such as thirty thousand year old mammoth teeth.
Whether you are looking for a tranquil walk, or a chance to see a range of plants, animals and fungi, Sevenoaks Wildlife Reserve is worth visiting. Its calm lakes, woodland and marshes have made it a popular bird watching spot for years, and the elemental gardens and excellent visitor centre help to make it an exciting place to visit.
There is an array of wildflowers to discover, as well as a host of insects and other creatures that live in the reserve. Black knapweed, great burnet and tubular water dropwort are just a few of the many flowers that can be found here in the warmer months, whilst early spring is a good time to catch a glimpse of wading birds such as lapwing and curlew.
Another area to explore at the wildlife reserve is Duke’s Wood. The wood has been converted from a gravel quarry, but that doesn’t mean you will have to miss out on seeing the beautiful emperor dragonfly and a range of moths and butterflies. The wood is filled with oak, hazel and ash trees, and the surrounding areas are dotted with flora such as primroses and broadleaved helleborine.
The site is also home to an ever-popular walk through lemur enclosure. Here you can observe ring-tailed, crowned and red-bellied lemurs as they take up their daily routine in their natural leafy enclosure.
Visitors to the site will find a wide variety of plants and trees. The reserve has been replanted over time to create an interesting mixture of habitats and plant communities.
There are 5 lakes around which ponds, seasonally flooded pools and grassland exist as well as small areas of reedbed.
The deeper lakes attract a range of wildfowl including Green-winged Teal, Ring-necked Duck and Ferruginous Duck whilst the muddy edges of the shallower waters attract passage waders such as Grey Plover, Little Stint and Temminck’s Stint.
Water birds breed here in spring and summer. Birds of prey such as Great Blue Herons, Great Spotted Woodpecker and Long-eared Owl breed here too. The reed beds and woodlands are home to a variety of passerines including breeding warblers in summer and flocks of siskins and redpolls in winter.
Visiting Sevenoaks Wildlife Reserve is a fantastic way to enjoy nature and take in the beautiful scenery of Sevenoaks, Kent. But, if you are in cricket, you should definitely check out the Sevenoaks Vine Cricket Club.