Saturday 03 September Chipping Sodbury Common Leader Mike Jackson

It was apparent there is a strengthening interest in this venue, evidenced by the weekend turnout of 16 members. On the lane we saw three Mistle Thrushes (27 had been reported here earlier!). Upon arriving at the common a mixed gathering of House Martins and young Swallows had us debating tail streamer lengths, before we aligned our sight along the hedgerow to see Blackcap and a couple of Spotted Flycatchers. A charm of Goldfinches twinkled in the foreground, the first of what would eventually be around 80 birds thriving on thistle seeds. Next up was a Redstart followed by two of each of Whinchat and Whitethroat, then another Redstart, this time a showy male. Buzzard, Kestrel and another Spotted Flycatcher kept the group focused before we topped the bushy vista to march on to where the cattle were gathered, passing two Wheatears and a cronking Raven as we went. The cattle had done their job to keep 17 Yellow Wagtails waiting for us. The varying plumages contained a few exquisite bright yellow males. With the ‘target birds’ bagged we returned satisfied with 37 species. Many thanks to the group for being such good company (and thanks to Mike for leading). Mike Jackson