Tuesday, May 07, 2019

πŸ“– BIRDING CROATIA 2019 πŸ‡­πŸ‡· ~ DAY 2

Day 2 ⛅️18C Tuesday 7th May 2019 ~ With the weather much improved and the wind dropping significantly it was my first opportunity to get out for a dawn walk and explore the local area.

The track down to the house is mostly offroad and there are lots of them. In fact, I was warned by the house owner that other visitors have actually got disorientated and lost and I can see why! In the immediate grounds, Corn Buntings are quite common and at least three Cuckoos were calling in the area, a female was also bubbling quite close by. In the distance, a Nightingale and Golden Oriole could also be heard.

Eastern Subalpine Warbler ~  seems quite common.
The area is mostly rocky scrubland with Macchia, Olive and low Pine, there are also two vineyards close by. Easter Subalpine Warblers seem reasonably common with three during my walk, two Black-eared Wheatears were also noted along with a single Woodchat Shrike. There are a few rocky tors to investigate and here in among some dead trees a Spotted Flycatcher. Two Larks were seen, firstly a Woodlark, which having posed for a photo proceeded to fly up in display flight and a Crested Lark, which landed on the roof just as I returned. Overhead Barn Swallow, House Martin and Swift, along with Red-footed Falcon, Common Kestrel and Honey Buzzard.

Razvode to Biokovo Natural Park
After breakfast, a trip to Biokovo Nature Park, around a two-hour drive, rising to almost three by the time you ascend the mountains to almost 6,000ft. This is prevailingly a rocky habitat with cliffs, especially on its coastal side. The prevailing forest types here are sub-Mediterranean White Oak forests and Aleppo pine groves. Most of the open habitats are rocky with dry grasslands. The drive up is both breathtaking and terrifying, mostly single track with passing places that have you teetering on the end of a precipice at times. Once again fate played its part as the final stretch of Croatia's highest road was closed due to ice!!

A section of the road on the ascent at Bikovo
Still, the scenery was stunning but sadly we failed to connect with some of our target species for the day such as Sombre Tit, Black-headed Bunting and Lesser Grey Shrike but there's still plenty of time!

Notable Species Seen at Bikovo...

Golden Eagle, Short-toed Eagle, Black Kite, Common Buzzard, Peregrine Falcon, Cuckoo, Common Swift, Alpine Swift, Crested Lark, House Martin, Barn Swallow, Blue Rock Thrush, Blackcap, Orphean Warbler Sp., Eastern Subalpine Warbler, Chiffchaff, Alpine Chough, Hooded Crow, Raven, Cirl Bunting

Photos of the Day...

Woodlark on the morning walk

Crested Lark

One of two Golden Eagle