Saturday, 29 August 2015

Birdfair 2015 Aug 21 - 23

First and foremost, a massive thanks to Tim Appleton, Carole, Tina, Joe and all the other organisers and volunteers who made this Birdfair yet another raging success.
TUB tucking into his first of many cakes!
 I fully expected to be banned from this year's proceedings after the (healthy) drama that I created last year with the launch of the Vote National Bird Campaign. It involved a semi-clad woman and people (and kids) walking around the site with sandwich boards - all elements that proved a bit too much for management!
 TUB stand
We had around 1,000 people pass through our stand in Marquee 8 which was actually a drop in numbers since 2013, our first year as an exhibitor when we achieved nearly 1,500 enquires. Last year doesn't count because the Vote National Bird Campaign caught the public's attention resulting in upwards of 4,000 people popping in to see us.
 The New Goodies Iolo Williams, TUB & Bill Oddie
 Birthday Boys: Iolo Williams & TUB
 Love that shirt!
 TUB and the delectable Louise Moss
 Nick Baker & TUB
 Lonely Birder's Marc Galvez & TUB
 The New Goodies again on the Leica stand
 The Birthday Boys again
 YMCA Birders - TUB & Duncan McDonald from Wildsounds
TUB & The Bird Mobile
The Bird Mobile made it's first major appearance outside of London since the conclusion of the Vote National Bird Campaign. It proved a great hit: both with the public and with my wallet!

Monday, 24 August 2015

Slovenia wildlife

Finally, to bring us up to date, here's a quick photographic gallery of some of the wildlife that I encountered on my Slovenian trip.

Keep an eye out because I will be running a tour to this beautiful country next spring.
 Song Thrush
 My first ever Nutcracker!!
 A Coal Tit with a weird tail
 A Brown Hare deep in the forest
 Fire-bellied Toad
 A Ruddy Darter?
 Red-backed Shrike
 Mallard family
 Honey Buzzard
 White Stork
 Black Redstart
 Brown Bear
 Cricket sp
Alpine Chough

Slovenia Bird List

Great Crested Grebe
Black-necked Grebe
Great Egret
Grey Heron
White Stork
Griffon Vulture
Short-toed Eagle
Honey Buzzard
Lesser Kestrel
Black-headed Gull
Yellow-legged Gull
Rock/Feral Pigeon
Wood Pigeon
Ural Owl
Alpine Swift
((Great Spotted Woodpecker))
Middle Spotted Woodpecker
Sand Martin
Crag Martin
House Martin
Water Pipit
White Wagtail
Grey Wagtail
Alpine Accentor
Black Redstart
Song Thrush
Mistle Thrush
((Great Reed Warbler))
Spotted Flycatcher
Great Tit
Coal Tit
Blue Tit
Crested Tit
Willow Tit
Long-tailed Tit
Common Treecreeper
Red-backed Shrike
Hooded Crow
House Sparrow
((Common Crossbill))


71 species
2 lifers 

Tuesday, 18 August 2015

Sexy Slovenia July 2015

Slovenia: the final destination in my European odyssey.

I just can't get over the beauty of this country. 

Sunday, 16 August 2015

Paris in the July sun

Paris was the next destination on my summer European tour. 
 Eiffel Tower
I was lucky with the weather as it was blazing sunshine most of the time. Paris is a city that you would not associate with good urban birding but over the years I've seen Short-toed Treecreeper, Crested Tit, Marsh Tit, Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Middle Spotted Woodpecker and even Hawfinch within a mile of the Eiffel Tower.

Indeed, I saw all said species (bar Hawfinch) on this visit although mostly in Bois de Boulogne, the French capital's second largest park, set on the eastern edge of the city.

My shots of those birds were less than desired so here's a selection of a few far easier species to snap!
 Carrion Crow in Père Lachaise Cemetery
 Carrion Crow in the shadow of the Eiffel
 Wood Pigeon
 House Sparrow
 A begging Starling
 A sunning Blackbird
An angelic Black-headed Gull

Saturday, 15 August 2015

Berlin - Goshawk capital

Early July saw me strolling the streets of Berlin urban birding. I have long known that this German city had a decent population of Goshawks but I didn't realise just how prevalent they were. With over 120 pairs present it's got to be the European capital for this impressive raptor?

 I came across at least three pairs with juveniles including the above depicted juvenile. The birds were fairly easy to see and certainly vociferous. To think that we struggle so much to see them in the UK where they are ultra secretive and certainly not urban.

The Goshawks stole the show for me but Berlin is clearly a green city potentially brimming with birds.
 Spotted Flycatcher 
 Black Redstart 
 Wood Pigeon
 House Sparrow 
 Juvenile Reed Warblers 
 Reed Warbler 
 Eurasian Jay