Tuesday 28 September – Frome Valley, Frampton Cotterell Leader: Mike Jackson

It was an overcast morning as 17 of us met by St. Peter’s Church. As we were about to set off a Great Spotted      Woodpecker was seen and we heard House Sparrows.  Walking past the allotments we saw a Blue Tit and a few Woodpigeons.  As we came to open countryside we saw Carrion Crow and about 13 Rooks calling loudly from the trees.  We soon added Jay, Magpie and Great Tit and walking alongside the river we had a fleeting view of a Grey Wagtail, and a Song Thrush was seen.  We then saw about ten Goldfinch and two more Great Spotted Woodpeckers.  A party of 14 Long-tailed Tits were seen, flying in a long ‘string’ and we found four more Goldfinches, a Chaffinch and a Blackbird.  Two Mallards were spotted in the river and one member of the group was fortunate to see a Kingfisher.  At the coffee stop three Little Egrets were found and quite a number of Starlings flew past.  As we continued, we had good views of a hovering Kestrel and heard a Green Woodpecker.  We then had a much better view of a Grey Wagtail.   We approached a derelict old barn hoping to find a Little Owl.  There was one in the barn but it flew out from a hole in the side wall, rather than the huge hole in the front wall and so was only seen by two or three of us.  We added Buzzard to the list but, as we began the last section of the walk, it started to rain very heavily and so we only added a single Lesser Black-backed Gull at the end.  Although the weather was poor it was an enjoyable walk in a nice area.  A total of 34 species were seen or heard. Thank you very much to Mike for leading the walk and to Nick for providing a list of the birds.       Mike Landen