Friday, 13 April 2012

Lucky local patch - SHORT-TOED EAGLE & co.

Local patch: had quite a few interesting birds this morning in the garden. All started very well with a stunning male COMMON REDSTART perched on a fence - my first this year! Next to it was a female Black Redstart. Now I actually have a singing male Black Redstart on a daily basis around my house. I hope it will breed close nearby.
Later a male Marsh Harrier was seen migrating over the karstic ridge, heading north. At about midday another large raptor flew over the house: SHORT-TOED EAGLE! A nice, big adult drifting past, heading NW - another first of the year. I watched it for at least 10 minutes when it started to soar over Miramare (see above), before heading definitely NW. Quite impressive sighting I must say!
A mixed flock of hirundines was whirling over the woodland and in front of the karstic ridge: most were Common Swifts and House Martins, with a few Swallows in it and the usual Alpine Swifts around Monte Grisa.
In the garden a Subalpine Warbler gave a short note of its song and showed briefly in a cypress bush. It's becoming increasingly more difficult to find it in the garden every spring, but even this year I succeded.
In the last few days I also had one or two Serins holding territories, some overflying Hawfinches and a Woodpigeon flying around (probably a breeding bird nearby).
The sea today held two small rafts of 16 and 11 Black-necked Grebes (all in breeding plumage) and a Great Crested Grebe.
Pics above: Short-toed Eagle (distant), Common Redstart and Marsh Harrier