Fritham, New Forest – 28th February 2024

21 group members gathered for the walk in indifferent weather after weeks of rain, so going underfoot was extremely wet and muddy. A Redwing very obligingly posed at the top of a tree for telescope views before we started off.

Setting off along the road past the United Free Church the amount of urban bird song was conspicuous in its volume: more than some of us had heard in some time. Continuing into the open and within a short distance, a Woodlark was singing, and a little later, there was a distant fleeting glance of a Dartford warbler and distant views of 2 Goshawks to the south. Meanwhile, numerous Meadow pipits and winter thrushes flew overhead. Further on, another 2 Woodlarks were singing and although 1 was sighted, the other was too far away to find.

 Our extra long coffee break was taken in the lawn to the north of Dockens Water where we were constantly entertained by 20+ Hawfinches flying above, backwards and forwards along the trees on the other side of the brook. What a treat.

A Green Woodpecker flew across the valley on the way up to the top track where another Dartford warbler was glimpsed by some but then refused to come out into the open for the rest of us to see. Mind you, by this time it had begun to rain so I really don’t blame it.

It was hard walk walking in the mud but we all made it and nobody was left behind.

Bird list:- Canada Goose, Mallard, Goshawk, Buzzard, Stock Dove, Woodpigeon, Collared Dove, Green Woodpecker, Woodlark, Meadow pipit, Wren, Dunnock, Robin, Stonechat, Blackbird, Song thrush, Redwing, Mistle thrush, Dartford warbler, Goldcrest, Blue tit, Great tit, Treecreeper, Carrion crow, Raven, Starling, House sparrow, Chaffinch, Greenfinch, Bullfinch, Hawfinch.

Janette Ecob


Woodlark – Jan Svetlik