Friday, 30 July 2010

Newly born Bee-eaters

Quick afternoon visit at Isola della Cona (GO) produced: Pygmy Cormorant, Night Heron (1 ad, 1 juv), Marsh Harrier, Sparrowhawk (1 f hunting over the marsh), Black-winged Stilt (in good numbers), Little Ringed Plover (1 juv.), Little Stint (4 in summer plumage - feeding on exposed muddy areas), Wood Sandpiper, Redshank (2), Black Tern (3 juvs flying in the inner marsh), Bee-eater (local nest: the pair regularly visiting the nest and feeding the youngs - see pics), Sand Martin (over the marsh with Swallows and House Martins).

Wednesday, 28 July 2010

Beech Marten

Today while driving at 03.25 am a BEECH MARTEN crossed the road between Kontovel and Barcola (TS) in a wooded area. It showed well as it stopped for a while and then climbed on a wall.

Tuesday, 27 July 2010

Back from the Farne Islands

I'm just back from a trip to Northumberland (UK) where I visited the famous seabird colonies on the Farne Islands. Here: the complete Northumberland trip report.
Above two pics taken by me; the stunning Atlantic Puffin (above) and the rare Roseate Tern (below). Other photos are available on the report page.

Local patch: today a Common Swallowtail was gliding in the gardens. Nothing more to report...I haven't started yet to check the bird activity...

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

Bee-eaters, Snipe, Whiskered Tern...

From the top: Bee-eater, Snipe and Green Sandpiper
Nothing much to report from Isola della Cona (GO) today; the usual things: Pochard (2), Pygmy Cormorant (4), Little Bittern (1 ad male in flight), Night Heron, Spoonbill (4), Black-winged Stilt (lots), Wood Sandpiper (few), Green Sandpiper (1), Common Sandpiper, Spotted Redshank (68), Common Redshank (3), Greenshank (about 20), Black-tailed Godwit (1), Snipe (about 5), Ruff (3), Mediterranean Gull, Common Tern (3 juvs), Black Tern (1 juv in the inner marsh - with Common Terns), Whiskered Tern (1), Bee-eater (the pair perching above the nest), Great Reed and Reed Warblers. On the Isonzo's riverbanks there's an occupied colony of Bee-eaters and maybe Sand Martins (I've seen only one nearby). In the area also two European Hares.

Saturday, 17 July 2010


Yesterday's night "safari trip" on the Karst (both Italian and Slovenian) produced some interesting mammals as well as some birds. 2 BEECH MARTENS were seen (1 near Briščki - TS and 1 near Dutovlje - SLO); near Mavhinje a Nightjar was singing. In a small patch of oak/pine wood near Dutovlje (SLO) 2 Tawny Owls were present (seen very well); 1 ad singing and 1 probable juv/imm, giving an odd call. In the background many Edible Dormice were squeaking and one even passed in the owl's field of view, showing well up in the trees.

Friday, 16 July 2010

Second Nightjar record for the patch & Red-backed Shrikes

Bird atlas surveying on the Karst produced also some interesting birds: one Nightjar sitting in the middle of the road near Lonjer/Longera (TS), plus another one singing in the Kokoš/Cocusso area near Bazovica (TS). Some kilometers away, in a broad-leaved woodland a male LESSER SPOTTED WOODPECKER was calling and drumming from atop a dead branch, while a Grey-headed Woodpecker was giving its short song nearby.
Then near Zgonik (TS) a Hoopoe on the road - took off as the car approached. And in the Repnič (TS) area also: Golden Oriole, Tree Sparrow, Cirl Bunting (stunning male singing), Nightingale, Red-backed Shrike (a family in the hedges: m & f + 3 juvs. - see above the male), Mistle Thrush, Woodlark (singing), Hawfinch, Buzzard, Roe Deer (1 small fawn - calling its mother).

Local patch: at 4.40 am this morning I heard the first singing NIGHTJAR for my patch area. The bird was quite distant; somewhere north on the wood margin.

Monday, 12 July 2010

Increasing bird numbers: with Gull-billed Terns and Curlew Sandpiper

Yesterday evening - Isola della Cona (GO) yielded: Pygmy Cormorant (12 at the roost), Little Bittern (1 ad male), Night Heron (lots of juvs. + 1-2 ad.), large numbers of herons (Little Egret, Grey and Great White), Purple Heron (3 juvs + 1 ad), Spoonbill (2), Garganey (heard), Pochard (1 male in the inner marsh), Hobby (1 flew low over the marsh), Black-winged Stilt (many fledged youngs with ads.), Little Ringed Plover (approx. 10 on mudflats), Curlew Sandpiper (1 in summer plumage on the mudflats), Common Sandpiper (1-2), Green Sandpiper (numerous), Wood Sandpiper, Spotted Redshank (numerous in flocks), Greenshank (some among the Spotteds), Snipe, Mediterranean Gull (some in summer plumage among BH Gulls), Common Tern (2 juvs in the inner marsh + 1 ad), GULL-BILLED TERN (3 in flight in the inner marsh; fishing and flying quite close to the hide - giving great views!), Bee-eater, Marsh Harrier (the pair), Reed Warbler (singing), Great Reed Warbler.
Gull-billed Tern:

Spoonbill with Grey Herons:

Black-winged Stilt:

Dabchick...with chick:

Night Heron:

Little Egret:

Owling in the surrounding areas produced: 9 Little Owls (7 at Fossalon and 2 at Terranova - GO) perching on wires and aerials, plus 2 Scops Owls (1 at Fossalon and 1 at Alberoni - GO).
Little Owl:

Friday, 9 July 2010

A nice by-the-way Black Stork in Slovenia

I'm now back from a 5-days non-birding trip around Slovenia. The visited areas were: Bela Krajina (with Novo Mesto), Štajerska (Celje, Ptuj, Maribor), Prekmurje, Koroška (+ Kamniško Savinske Alpe). So here's a short list of the few interesting wildlife I've seen (mostly from the drive with the bus):
Red-backed Shrike
Grey Heron
Buzzard - literally tons of them!
Common Sandpiper
Reed Warbler - some singing in the Drava's reedbeds
Mistle Thrush
Song Thrush
Crested Lark - Štajerska
Tree Sparrow
Common Tern - at Ptuj
Common Quail - 1 singing at dusk in the fields near Ptuj
Black Redstart
Sand Martin - Štajerska
White Stork - both in the Prekmurje and Primorska region
Black Stork - 1 stunning bird in the Gornji Grad - Kamnik area; perching on a high coniferous tree just by the roadside.
Peacock Butterfly
Large White
White Admiral
Banded Demoiselle - quite common in the north and east