A visit to Slimbridge WWT

Having worked for WWT for 2 years now, it was only until May that I visited another centre apart from Llanelli. Although, my visit in May was for a training course which meant we only had a short time spare and didn’t get much of a chance to explore the whole site. Espen and I decided that we would pay a visit to WWT Slimbridge since there were some nice birds around and I wanted to have a good look around.

We arrived at the centre and Espen paid his fee to enter and did as any visitor does; bought bird seed! Visiting a WWT reserve, no matter how old you are, you will always want to hand feed some ducks. We started our visit by heading straight for the hides to have a look at the large numbers of Bewick Swans, European and Greenland White-Fronted Geese, these did not disappoint! We arrived in the Robbie Garnet hide just in time to see a huge flock of geese land in the grass in front, a large number of Bewicks were also feeding on the grass and my absolute favourite: Wigeon were in large numbers making their adorable call to one another. The next stop was the Tower since a couple of Little Stint had been reported over the past few days and I had yet to see one at Llanelli. (always working!) After a good search around the wader flocks, Espen managed to pick one up feeding in a small gully by some grass, I never realised just how small t12289737_883373371777898_2412650755071972629_nhey were!

I had paid a quick visit to the Tropic House on my previous visit but this time we spent a good amount of time watching the Stilts and the Mousebirds just feeding and calling to one another. We were both obsessed with watching the Pygmy Geese swimming around since they were just so small! We also had to pay a visit to the Otters, I adore otters and the work WWT does for them is brilliant, of course the three were out playing in the water. The lack of visitors given the weather made the otters show off a little and were happy for me to sit next to the glass and watch as they cleaned themselves off after their swim.

As I said before, no visit to a WWT centre is complete without hand feeding some birds. Espen decided to target the Smew to feed whilst I was happy to feed anything that would take the seed off me! It’s brilliant to see how much children like to be around the ducks and how they feel comfortable around them and even hand feeding them, I have been visiting WWT Llanelli since I was 4 years old, every year I would visit with my nain and Aunt and then was one of the few to have their birthday party there. In 2013 I signed up to become a volunteer and after almost a year of volunteering, I applied for a Casual Learning Assistant position and now I am continuing on with my job and developing not only myself but the centre and activities along with my team of volunteers and the Learning Department itself. I am one of the very lucky people who can say they love their jobs!

 

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