Only six braves turned out on what was a very dull morning with rain forecast for later in the day. The rain, or rather fine drizzle, came on a little after we had passed Old Sodbury Church and spoiled what is normally a splendid view towards Chipping Sodbury and beyond. Despite the poor visibility up till then we had counted 13 bird species, including a mass of Lesser Black-blacked Gulls and Herring Gulls riding a thermal at the foot of the hill. Swallows and House Martins were abundant, a Kestrel, a Raven and a Green Woodpecker also ‘played’ the fine drizzle. However, after we had had a refreshment break under the cover of the trees on the climb up to Old Sodbury Fort, things improved; the drizzle stopped and there was brightness all about. We decided not to do the full walk, with picnic on the high view-point above Horton, because of the likelihood of further rain but, while on the short cut, we were rewarded with sightings of Red Kite, Meadow Pipit, Greenfinch, Swift, Yellowhammer, Whitethroat, and Blackcap. At the ‘pond’ we saw Moorhens, Little Grebes, and Mallards then, as we returned to the footpath, a Grey Herron rose up above the trees, bitterly complaining at something. Our total species count was 38. Thanks to the ‘brave six’ for coming, for despite the weather, we had a good walk (Thanks David for leading). David Tombs.
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