Sunday 27 April 2014

Red-footed Falcons & orchids

Male Red-footed Falcon Falco vespertinus
Yesterday in the afternoon I made a short visit to the open areas around the airfield of Divača. The grasslands were carpeted with orchids, mostly Orchis morio which here is very abundant. Also lots of Daffodils Narcissus poeticus and many others. On the bird front I was very glad to see two RED-FOOTED FALCONS (a male and a female) hunting above the meadows in the company of several Kestrels. A SHORT-TOED EAGLE gliding low above the airfield was also nice to see and there was also a ringtail harrier which unfortunately will remaind unidentified (doubt between Hen and Pallid). In the hedges my first Common Whitethroats of the season were singing and several Corn Buntings, Skylarks and 3 Stonechats were on territories. Also 2 Cuckoos singing and in the air a good passage of Swallows, House Martins and some Common Swifts.
Both yesterday and today I had a Wood Warbler singing in one of the gardens around my home.
Fritillaria orientalis (tenella). Not an orchid, but a rare plant in Slovenia, confined to the Karst's dry meadows.
Neotinea tridentata
Apparently a hybrid between Orchis simia and Orchis militaris
Scope view over the meadows - the patches of purple are made up of Orchis morio. Literally tons of them!
Narcissus poeticus and Orchis morio
Part of the meadows as seen through the scope. The white spots are Daffodils Narcissus poeticus. A real abundance of wildflowers.