Tuesday 27 July – Redhouse Farm/Felton Common Leader: Melanie Patch

Redhouse Farm – Winford Manor was a bit misleading as we didn’t visit the farm, but Felton Common was none the less a rewarding place to do our walk. With numbers up to our best so far and with two new faces (welcome both) twenty eight walkers set off in the company of Melanie Patch, our host from the farm. We found Skylark and Stonechat in the top section, House Martin at the Round House and two Yellowhammers as we crossed the common for the first time. Linnets were our constant companions throughout the day, often sitting on the top branches of Hawthorn bushes. One was summarily kicked off his vantage point by a splendid Mistle Thrush. As we turned to head back along the edge of the common, a family of Stonechats showed and Swallows swished close by our heads. At the coffee stop, a buzzard soared within the airport boundary, showing a particularly vivid white chest ring. We counted the nesting House Martins and fortunately they were all still there despite the rapid transit of a Hobby. A wander down Long Lane gave us calling Chaffinch and Chiffchaff. The track back to the bottom corner of the common, tree lined and shady held a Great Spotted Woodpecker and Treecreeper. The two Bullfinches seen at the top were not at first recognised – until they flew, as they were using a call new to some of us. Alas, only Linnet and Gulls were noted for the final dash back to the cars as it was tipping it down. Many thanks to Melanie for leading us round and for finding some of our thirty species. Nick Hawkridge