Taurus Mountains Bird Surveys

After the lowlands, we head south east to a 50-km square in the Taurus mountains near Darboğaz and race to get two more transects completed in the evening, because the weather the next day (20th May) is predicted to be cloudy and wet. The mountain road runs the ridge high above the mining village ofContinue reading “Taurus Mountains Bird Surveys”

Stodmarsh

In the late afternoon, the warm wind blows from the west and the sun shines over the wide, grazing marshes and rare, reed bed remnant of the Stour valley. The mere at the east end near Grove Ferry is full of moulting teal and shoveler and lapwings, gulls and starlings. Some of the ducks splash and dive intoContinue reading “Stodmarsh”

Eleven Severn Goosanders

July 31, 2016 The River Severn is low and slow-paced, sliding between gravel braids and petty sand banks. Beef cattle and sheep graze the wide water meadows, mallards Anas platyrhynchos shelter in deep oxbows. The weather is kind with a gentle breeze of warm air under slate grey, rainless clouds that drift above the distant hills. Field ornithologist, Tony Cross soon shattersContinue reading “Eleven Severn Goosanders”

Bonaparte’s Gull at Oare Marshes

14th July 2016 Bonaparte’s Gull Chroicocephalus philadelphia, as its scientific name testifies, is a North American species, and as ubiquitous as the similar black-headed gull Chroicocephalus ridibundus is here in Western Europe. A single Bonaparte’s turns up at Oare Marshes, and immediately the record is run out as an alert online; rarity is prized by many and, like many stormblown ‘Yankees’, theContinue reading “Bonaparte’s Gull at Oare Marshes”

Bough Beech in Late April

Bough Beech reservoir sits beneath the woodland that cloaks the North Downs. In late April, the long expanse of bright water is hardly stirred by a cold breeze. The south end of the reservoir is given over to sailing and the flotilla of dinghies, lit brilliant white in the sun, runs back and forth.  The northern end isContinue reading “Bough Beech in Late April”

Hilly Wood

An erudite local botany blog tells of a wood full of brilliant yellow, cyclamen-flowered daffodils Narcissus cyclamineus. Now is the time to visit and so we head for Hilly Wood near Cranbrook. N. cyclamineus is an introduced and naturalised species from northwest Spain and northern Portugal, where five daffodil species are endemic, according to a local nature conservation NGO from Galicia. TheContinue reading “Hilly Wood”