Tuesday 26 April – Leap Valley, Downend Leaders: Joyce Donker and Kate Cashmore

A sunny morning and a delightful walk through varied habitats including field, woodland, narrow country lane and riverside. We left Blackhorse Road to enter an open area of common land with trees and shrubs. There we spotted Starling, Crow, Blackbird, Blue Tit, Song Thrush, Chiffchaff, Pied Wagtail. The route led us through woodland carpeted in Bluebells and other wild spring flowers. Here were recorded Great Tit, Dunnock, Blackcap, Coal Tit, Robin and more Chiffchaff, and the fluting song of Blackbirds, resonant of summer days. The path led across a sports field where we saw a Jackdaw, either predating a nest, or possibly building one. We went up some steps over the A4174 to a pleasant country lane with more Chiffchaff, Pied Wagtail and Chaffinch. Perched on a barn roof was a small group of elegant white Doves. Then down to the River Frome where we had sighting of the Kingfisher darting along, the Dipper dipping, and a Goldcrest flitting from branch to branch nearby. Retracing our steps we turned along a narrow lane surrounded by fields, where we were treated to the sight of two Swallows circling and darting before settling on the telegraph wires. An excellent walk and 36 species recorded. Thanks to Joyce and Kate for leading. Di Bunniss