Saturday 04 May – Inglestone Common Leader: Mike Jackson

Five of us met in Lower Woods car park on a gloriously sunny morning where we watched a Coal Tit taking food to its concealed nest on the other side of the garden wall of the Lodge. As we set off for the Common, a Willow Warbler sang, psychologically helping us cope with the standing water that was persistently underfoot. Here, two more members joined. The scrub on Inglestone Common provided excellent habitat for Whitethroat, Blackcap, Goldfinch and Linnet. Buzzard and Skylark enjoyed the free space above the grassland, and a small raptor kept us momentarily guessing until its hovering declared it as a Kestrel. Three Swallows flew near human habitations and two Song Thrushes foraged with a Blackbird on a horse paddock where we heard our only woodpecker of the day, a Great Spotted. The denser scrub and overgrown hedgerows flanking the north of the common bore Stock Dove, more Whitethroat, two Lesser Whitethroat and Bullfinch, while a Nuthatch called from the trees. Ravens were never far away and we probably saw four throughout. The Willow Warbler welcomed us back to our cars where we took a moment to absorb its dreamy notes. Thanks to the group for achieving 30 species (and thanks to Mike for leading.) Mike Jackson