Tuesday 07 February – Winterbourne Leader: Mike Jackson

22 of us set off in glorious sunshine to walk the fields and brookside woodlands of Winterbourne’s western edge. The obliging Redwing seeing us off would be the first of more than 50 that we would eventually see. As Goldcrest, House Sparrow and Robin made themselves known we entered the first frosty field to see a small group of Meadow Pipit. With Herring Gull on the ground and a Lesser Black-backed Gull cruising by, we headed to St. Michaels Church, adding Fieldfare, Jay, Dunnock and two singing Skylark as we went. Coffee was taken at Monk’s Pool LNR under the gaze of a pylon-perched male Peregrine. A Kestrel then checked us out prior to gliding east, before the female Peregrine briefly alighted on the pylon before heading north. The male stayed to watch us on our way which led us to plenty of activity from enthusiastic Great Spotted Woodpeckers, two or three at a time drumming and calling. The adjacent Bradley Brook LNR gave us Long-tailed Tits, more woodpeckers, and another Goldcrest. We ticked Buzzard, Pied Wagtail, more winter thrush, and a Song Thrush. As we walked the last few fields we passed a large loose flock of Fieldfare, their plumage so well defined as if immaculately prepared for the oncoming breeding season. Thanks go to the group for providing such good company, to Alan for keeping the list of 34 species (and to Mike for leading). Mike Jackson