Monday 24 March 2014

Wildlife spring mix

Phone-scoped Cirl Bunting Emberiza cirlus at 60x
Snow-covered Mt. Nanos today
Saturnia pavoniella
Coronilla emerus ssp. emeroides (left) and Euphorbia wulfenii (right) on the patch's cliffs
A few updates from the past couple of days. Saturday morning started with the first singing WILLOW WARBLER of the spring in the garden...later joined by a second bird. During the morning I visited the Glinščica valley/Val Rosandra where I found the above moth - Saturnia pavoniella. Never seen one of those before. On the non-bird front also 2 quite big Fire Salamanders Salamandra salamandra were of note. At least 3 Blue Rock Thrushes were singing, including one that performed well close to the main path. Other birds there included a few Rock Buntings, 3 Grey Wagtails along the Glinščica stream, 1 House Martin on passage and commoner birds. In the afternoon I made a quick visit to the cliffs in the patch, where the year's first ALPINE SWIFT was the highlight. The area is now covered with the yellow-flowering Euphorbia wulfenii and Coronilla emerus.
Today in the early afternoon I went for a stroll under the rain at Škocjanski zatok NR. Despite the bad weather conditions (including a south wind) 2 Little Gulls were of note, along with good numbers of Swallows over the freshwater marsh (about 100 birds). Other birds included 1 Black-tailed Godwit, 1 Ruff, 1 female Marsh Harrier, 1 Lapwing, 3-4 Black-winged Stilts and the more usual species. The late afternoon was spent under almost clear and sunny skies on the Karst with a good variety of common grassland species like Cirl Bunting, Woodlark & Skylark, Stonechat, Corn Bunting, Linnet and Raven.