Friday, 24 July 2009

Special birds: Capercaillie

Capercaillie Tetrao urogallus is Europe's biggest grouse species. It occurs mainly in old-growth conifer forests in the Baltic States, Poland, Slovakia, Czech Republic, and the uplands of the Balkan countries. But it is not common anywhere in the region, indeed in many areas it seems to be in decline. To see it you will probably need some local info or even an expert guide. Photo by kind permission of Kevin at Heatherlea Birdwatching Tours.

Wednesday, 15 July 2009

Destinations: Letea - Romania

This remote village in the north-east of the Danube Delta in Romania is only accessible by boat. Just behind the village is a large salt-lake, which dries out in sumer. There is a colony of Collared Pratincoles here and Kentish Plover. The village itself has resident Syrian Woodpeckers and Little Owls. On passage, when the surrounds of the village are wet, waders drop in. The route to Letea is via lily-clad and reed-lined channels where Little Crake, Red-necked Grebes and Ferruginous Ducks, amongst many others, breed.

Monday, 6 July 2009

Destinations: Boddi-Szek - Hungary

Boddi-szek is a large salt-lake in the Kiskunsag region of Hungary. In spring and autumn varying level of water are here, in high summer the lake is often dry. This is an excellent site for passage waders, and several rarities have been found here, and Kentish Plover is in one of its very few Hungarian breeding sites. In autumn and winter large numbers of geese occur, mostly Greater White-fronts, some Bean and also often a few Red-breasted Geese. The area lies to the south of the main Kecskemet-Solt road (52) and north of road 53, to the east of the village of Dunatetetlen. It is only marked on the most detailed local marks. A tall observation-tower lies on its northern edge.