Tuesday 29 March – Castle Combe Leader: Geoff Hardman

There was a healthy turnout of 20 birders, keen to enjoy a nice Spring day. The group had a pleasant walk
across fields, spotting Redwing as we went, and down through the almost impossibly picturesque village. We
paused at the bridge over the brook where we heard a distant Nuthatch calling. There was plenty of birdsong in
the trees around us, plus the yaffling of Green Woodpecker echoing around, Buzzards mewing overhead and
Great Spotted Woodpeckers drumming in the distance. Smaller birds of note were numerous Chiffchaff calling, a
Goldcrest flitting around bare branches, several Greenfinch and a Treecreeper giving good views to a lucky few.
Looking down, we saw Violets, lots of Lesser Celandine, plenty of Wild Garlic coming into leaf and the occasional
early Bluebell just starting to flower. The small pool at Kent’s Bottom yielded some water birds, including a gaggle
of Canada Geese, and also a flock of Linnet feeding in a field of Sunflowers beyond. The closing section was
along quiet lanes through farmland. Here we saw a couple of Red Kite, a large mixed flock of Fieldfare, Redwing
and Starling, plus Stock Doves feeding amongst a group of Common Gull, with a flyover Meadow Pipit
conveniently calling. The last significant bird of the day was a beautiful Yellowhammer, very obligingly singing
from the top of a nearby hedge. Our total was 45 species. Thanks to Geoff for leading, to Alan Daniells for
keeping the records, and to all present for their great company. Tim Fell