Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Smells like spring

Little Grebe Tachybaptus ruficollis - phone-binning at its best
Prunus mahaleb
Prunus spinosa
Finally some signs of the proper spring kicking in. The sea in the patch is quite lively at the moment, with mixed flocks of Wigeon, Pintail and Shoveler stopping regularly. I'm now expecting to see the first Garganeys as well (some reported today). Also 11 Mute Swans this morning. Woodland yaffle aka Green Woodpecker is heard calling on a daily basis, along with the other birds in the chorus. Here and there a singing Blackcap too.
Checked briefly Škocjanski zatok NR in the past two days. Some new spring additions were in the form of 7 Ferruginous Ducks, flock of 8 Ruffs, 8 Lapwings, a few Snipes and Curlews. Pygmy Cormorants are numbering about 7 birds and there are still 3 to 4 Cattle Egrets present. The most interesting ducks include 9 Gadwalls, several Pochards and Tufted Ducks. Also heard a Water Rail singing. The warden also reported the first Moustached Warbler a few days ago, but when I visited it was too windy in the reedbed. Passerines included up to 7 Chiffchaffs in the bushes, 1 Stonechat and still some Reed Buntings about. The hedges by the path are in complete white bloom - mostly Prunus mahaleb (with tiny green leaves as well) and Prunus spinosa.
Lately I've been experiencing a bit of phone photography (as above), because I'm not taking my camera out very often.