Thursday, 2 May 2013

Acros, herons and Honey Buzzard

Škocjanski zatok NR: back on the reserve after two weeks of absence, just to find it overgrown with reeds, grass and a full explosion of green in the hedges. The visibility over much of the freshwater marsh is now quite limited (as usual in summer), but at least there's a lot of cover for breeding birds. The area was not particularly rich in bird biodiversity today, but the most notable thing was a good Acrocephalus presence. During my morning walk I counted an astonishing 41 singing Sedge Warblers, 38 Great Reed Warblers and 13 Reed Warblers (year's first by the way). All these in the length of the 2 km long circular path. Also Nightingales were in bigger numbers than usual with 9 birds recorded and Cetti's Warblers numbered 7 singing individuals.
Of the other birds, these were the most notable: 4 Night Herons, 5 Purple Herons (above), 1 Wryneck (singing), 2 Whinchats and a male Red-backed Shrike. Waders included the more or less usual Black-winged Stilts (23), Little Ringed Plover (1), Common Redshank (3), Wood Sandpiper (2) and so on. About 24 Common Terns now on the nests in the brackish lagoon.
Great Reed Warbler

Local patch: the first days of May are the proper time to see a returning Honey Buzzard and yesterday I had my first one just over the house. It was a nice male and it even circled for a while with one of the local Common Buzzards (second pic), before gliding E.
Also a Grey Heron flying SE along the coast, 1 Golden Oriole singing (almost daily now) and usual seasonal stuff like Nightingale, 2 Ravens, Black Redstart, Common Swifts and House Martins.
 Honey Buzzard