Sunday, 10 June 2012

Late spring stuff

There's still some interesting stuff to be seen around, before the big summer gap. Today along with a friend from Slovenia I visited the usual selection of coastal wetlands and got a few interesting birds. Highlight of the day was a Gull-billed Tern at Valle Cavanata. We found it resting on a sandy islet among Black-headed Gulls. After about 10 seconds of watching it took off and we soon lost it. Good timing!
At the Lisert wetland there was a male Ferruginous Duck on the inner pond, along with 3 Tufted Ducks. Both species could be breeding in the area, but there's still no evidence of that. A Hobby was hawking overhead and the usual Marsh Harrier circling above the reedbed. On the Timavo's estuary also at least 50 Common Eiders - high seasonal number.
In the afternoon at Isola della Cona NR we scored two LITTLE GULLS (an adult and an immature) in the freshwater marsh - first record for me this year. A Short-toed Eagle was soaring overhead, while the marsh also held 2 Avocets, 16 Spoonbills and 1 male Ferruginous Duck. The Bee-eaters were very active at the colony in the artificial earth-bank and could be watched really closely from the second screening along the path.
Other birds seen during the day included: Curlew, Common Tern, Reed & Great Reed Warbler, 4 Purple Herons, Little Ringed Plover, Lapwing, Cattle Egret, 1 Green Sandpiper, 2 Redshanks, 1 Wood Sandpiper, 1 female Honey Buzzard, Black-winged Stilt, 1 Hobby at Isola della Cona as well, 1 female Yellow Wagtail, 1 Squacco Heron ect.
Photos above (top to bottom): Gull-billed Tern, Little Gull (Black-headed Gull on the left), Bee-eater at the colony.