Croydon Ducks - South Norwood Country Park - 2012

Latest update: 24th September 2012

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South Norwood County Park is a 125 acre park, adjacent to Elmers End railway station, three tram stations and Beckenham
Cemetery. It is mostly wild wet meadows and woods, with a large pond or lake. The land was originally a sewage farm, then
unused for many years and only developed as a park 25 years ago.


There is a car park in the park, entrance in Albert Road (SE25 4QL for satnavs, both shown on the map above) next to the Croydon
Sports Arena, parallel to Portland Road in South Norwood, and entrances from the three tram stations, Elmers End, Arena and Harrington
Road.  The park is closed at night. Note that South Norwood Lake and Grounds is a different park, a couple of miles away.

There is visitor centre with toilets next to the car park, but it's only open for two hours weekend afternoons. Also an excellent children's
playground and  pitch and putt. There are lots of paths through the park, with cycling encouraged, but no sign posts and some of the
smaller paths are hard to find.  The park is well managed for wildlife, with natural fences made from tree trunks and branches around the
pond and along the streams to stop dogs worrying the wildlife. The pond has a large island for nesting and resting, and four small jetties
for visitors to feed the wild fowl. There is a no fishing in the lake.

Older Photos of South Norwood Country Park

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The main park entrance in Albert Road is a cobbled road, over the tram line and to the car park.

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A wide view of the lake in South Norwood Country Park and the island.  A lot of trees and shrubs have been cut back during the
winter, this view was not possible last year.

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The visitor centre and toilets, next to the car park and children's playground.  Unfortunately very rarely open.

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One end of the children's play ground with swings, too cold in March for many visitors.

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The other end of the children's play ground with a zip wire.

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29th January 2011, two swans have arrived this winter, did not see swans here during 2011.  Behind, Mallards, Coots, Canada Geese,
Tufted Ducks and four Domestic Ducks.

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This group of four Domestic Ducks follow each other around the lake, almost stuck together.  No idea of gender.  There are two more
on the far side of the lake.

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Too many noisy sea birds on the lake.

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The four Domestic Ducks have followed us around the lake to the next feeding pier, while a fifth can be seen near the island. Lots of
Tufted Ducks here, the ones with a white splodge on a black body.

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A single Shoveler Ducks beyond the geese, there were more last year.

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The second group of Domestic Ducks, just a pair, lots of sea birds.

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26th February 2012, thr lake is much quieter, most of the seabirds have migrated north.

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The swans are still here.

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Lucy paddling in the muddy stream. 

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The southerly feeding pier.

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There are more crows on the island than ducks and geese, one or two Domestic Ducks perhaps sitting on nests.

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1st April 2012, the ducks don't seem very hungry this week, pairs of Mallards and Tufted Ducks.

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Again a lot of Tufted Ducks on the lake, the other two feeding piers can  be seen here, on the north and west edges of the lake.

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Very peaceful here as well, the ducks don't seem hungry, which is probably a good thing, meaning lots of people feeding them.

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The swans on the far side of the pond.

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The nursery areas of the lake, the fences (once mended) around this corner of the lake stop the Canada Geese getting the duck nests. 
Despite the drought, the water level is still reasonably high, last summer the lake bottom was exposed in this corner. Tress have been
cut here during the winter.

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6th June 2012, first visit in a couple of months, during which it has been raining heavily so the water level is very high. Relatively quiet,
although other birds did arrive when they realised food was available.  A single Canada Goose gosling on the lake, seen here with
a Coot and a  Tufted Duck.

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A single Great Crested Grebe, don't often see these birds.  It kept diving and surfacing 20 feet away.

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This Coot seem to have a nest buried away somewhere, and kept disappearing with food.

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A single Mallard duckling on the lake, or at least swimming around, about three or four weeks old.  Last year there were many more.

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More geese finally arrive for food.

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On the other side of the lake, only Coot chicks, one here being fed by a parent, another looking one.

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And a single swan.

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September 2012, three months since the last  visit, no geese on this side of the pond, but lots of Mallards, Coots and Moorhens.

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A Moorhen mother with her chick.

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The Mallards swim off after being fed.

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A few Canada Geese on this side of the lake, and some Tufted Ducks.  Little rain for the past two months, so water level dropping.

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A family of Coots.

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Two domestic ducks were sleeping on the island and finally realise they are missing out of food, unfortunately it's all gone by the
time they arrive.


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