Sunday 27 April – Cleeve Hill

 A good mix of habitats and a great view were enjoyed by twelve members on this amble around Cleeve Hill. We got off to a good start with views of Wheatear close to a quarry and were serenaded by numerous Skylarks. Walking first around the top (dodging a few golf balls from the nearby golf course), we picked up several species in scrub including Blackbird, Chaffinch, Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff, Wren and a distant Song Thrush. Several Whitethroat and a good view of Yellowhammer also delighted. Our guide pointed out where to find Ring Ouzel (another time perhaps!) and various points of interest along the way, including a heather enclosure where we might have seen a Stonechat (although this remains unconfirmed!). We then followed the valley down, with great views of Red Kite, Crows and Jackdaws enjoying the thermals along the nearby ridge. Passing through ‘Watery Bottom’, beside the ‘Washpool’ and then along ‘Dry Bottom’, we picked up a few woodland species including Blackcap, Blue Tit, Coal Tit, Goldcrest and a calling Marsh Tit. 32 species were seen in all. Many thanks to our guide Beryl, from Cheltenham Bird Club, for hosting this event.