Month: April 2015

Poseljani’s Rich History and Habitats

The road winds above Lake Skadar with panoramas of lake and forest around each hairpin; through the village of Kruševica where beekeepers tend the hives and signs hang above tables of laden with tall bottles; on through pretty Komarno, and, at the end of a steep slope with lake […]

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Virpazar’s Glanville Fritillaries

On the hot afternoon of April 22nd after a long day, I saw my first fritillary butterfly of the year, which settled within spitting distance at the top of an area of long, abandoned terraced fields not far from the village of Kruševica on the Virpazar to Rijeka […]

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Evening’s End on Velika Plaza

Velika Plaza on this bright evening is huge, wild and exhilarating with a strong onshore wind, warm and welcome after a hot day; it is also cluttered with ramshackle summer cabins and endless, ugly litter, much probably brought up during winter storms but much also discarded by […]

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Rumija’s Romans

April 20th is another brilliant day and Lake Skader ice flat, blue gin under blue sky. The villages and hamlets are alive with sprouting vines and emerging vegetables; an old woman bends over hoeing carefully along the rows. The surrounding wooded slopes are bright green swathes of hornbeam (Carpinus […]

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Buljarica in Bloom

Buljarica was hot and humid under high sheets of cloud sliding slowly in from the Adriatic. The small meadows on the narrow coastal plain behind the huge reed bed have no gate just a piece of cord slung across the entrance and are now high with grasses, bright yellow […]

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The Road to Čukovići

The old chalk quarry just outside of Virpazar on the road to Rijeka Crnojevića is a sheltered sun trap. Rank grassland and shrubs have not developed, perhaps because of the shallow soils and regular grazing by goats from the nearby smallholding. Hence it is floristically diverse […]

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Lake Skadar’s Resurrection Plant

Today I found Ramonda serbica on a sheltered, small, north-facing cliff face on the south side of Lake Skadar along the winding road from Virpazar to Ostros. This plant is endemic to the southern Balkans and known as one of the few so called ‘resurrection plants’. This is […]

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Plavnica Water Meadows

The road from Golubovci runs arrow straight for six kilometres, so the sign says, to the isolated riverside resort of Plavnica through a flat landscape of small farms.  Each holding and their house is different but nearly all are growing vegetables in neat plots, with cabbage and lettuce being […]

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April Blues

Two species of blue butterfly (the Lycaenid family) are now out, both flying low in patches of rough grassland between Virpazar and Rijeka Crnojevića. One is the chequered blue (Scolitantides orion) and the other the short-tailed blue (Cupido argiades). The first is quite different from most […]

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The Road to Gluhi Do

Just to the south of Virpazar, the twisting road to Gluhi Do runs alongside a stream, wet pastures and woodlands and then across the edge of a large expanse of abandoned, thorn-covered farmland.  There is distant traffic noise from the fast road to the Sozina Tunnel on the […]

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Komaji, near Čilipi, Croatia

On the way back to Montenegro from the airport at Čilipi on the 13th April, I stopped below the village of Komaji where what looks like part of an old railway track runs along the hillside. I think this was built between Dubrovnik and Herceg Novi in […]

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