Tag Archives: Black-shouldered Kite

Imperial Eagle near border of Eastern Germany

KaiseradlerA fresh summer morning with a steel-blue sky opened the day. In front of the steel-blue sky over the Zichow forest in the Randowbruch only 10 km away from the polish border, raptors are circling up in the air. One of them is strikingly different. Red Kites (Milvus milvus) circle around him and – after a while – attack him. Finally it is clear: the highly thought-after immature Imperial Eagle (Aquila heliaca) is found.

After a beautiful but quite cool morning, the birding day had gone so far without the long-awaited sighting of the Imperial Eagle. The day was – now at 10:30 am – although still young already very productive. But the exceptional vagrant had not yet emerged. Bad luck: on Tuesday and Wednesday of the week, the Eagle of the Randowbruch between Zichow and Zehnebeck could not be detected within five hours of up to 4 observers.

Otherwise, it was already a beautiful, productive birding day. Almost no sighting of a regular bird of prey remained unfulfilled. So many Red Kites – especially young birds – ,Black Kites (Milvus migrans), young and adult White-tailed Eagles (Haliaeetus albicilla), Eurasian Marsh-Harriers (Circus aeruginosus), Common Buzzards (Buteo buteo), at least 4 Lesser Spotted Eagle (Clanga pomarina), one or the other Eurasian Kestrel (Falco tinnunculus) and as a nice highlight a deep passing Eurasian Hobby (Falco subbuteo).

Shortly before a sighting of an Aquila-Eagle was still uncertain. Continue reading Imperial Eagle near border of Eastern Germany

Falkenbussarde im Winterquartier in Südafrika

FalkenbussardFalkenbussarde (Buteo buteo vulpinus) sind in den Sommermonaten der südlichen Erdhalbkugel die häufigsten Greifvögel in Südafrika. Die gilt, insbesondere für die westliche Kapprovinz. Für einen Birdwatcher aus Mitteleuropa ist die Suche nach Falkenbussarden in ihren Winterquartieren in Südafrika vielleicht die einfachste Weise, diese Mäusebussard-Subspezies zu sehen und zu fotografieren.
Dazu wurde genug einschlägige Literatur gewälzt. Es stellte sich heraus, daß die am Kap „Steppe Buzzard“ genannten Greife entlang der Schnellstraßen und Autobahnen recht häufig auf Zaunpfählen in Steppenlandschaften (oder das, was so aussieht) zu finden sind. Die Gegend zwischen Grabouw und Caledon schien für mehrere interessante Arten sehr gut geeignet; u.a. für die Falkenbussarde.

In den frühen Morgenstunden erreichten wir die Ackerbaugebiete außerhalb von Grabouw. Es dauerte nicht lange, bis wir überhaupt den ersten Bussard wie aus dem „Lehrbuch“ sahen. Nicht untypisch der hiesigen Mäusebussarde (Buteo buteo buteo) tendieren auch Falkenbussarde dazu gerade auch an stark befahrenen Straßen völlig ruhig und relaxed auf Zaunpfählen zu sitzen. Dies allerdings nur solange das Auto anhält. Wenn dann noch ein dicker Gegenstand Continue reading Falkenbussarde im Winterquartier in Südafrika

Spring migration and birds of prey in Extremadura – April 2013

In spring 2013, there will be an ornithological study tour to the region of Extremadura, southwesternSpain. It includes the provinces ofBadajozand Cáceres east of the border withPortugal, and is not only famous for the best-preserved medieval monuments inSpainbut among nature lovers for its unique combination of oak woodlands, grasslands, agricultural landscapes, lakes and rocky regions. Accordingly, the avifauna is highly diverse (about 340 spp.), with many species having their distribution centers for the Iberian Peninsula and southwestern Europe in that region. The spectrum ranges from common birds like the Lesser Kestrel, Azure-winged Magpie and Thekla Lark to outspoken rarities, such as White-headed Duck, Little and Great Bustard, Pin-tailed Sandgrouse, Black-shouldered (or Black-winged) Kite, (European) Roller and Great Spotted Cuckoo – species which are only distributed here and/or are already gone at most other places in Europe. The list of remarkable sightings is growing continuously; in spring of 2012, for the first time Lesser Crested Tern and Little Swift were recorded for the Extremadura.
A highlight of the tour will be a visit to the Monfragüe National Park north of Trujillo, which has been established

Continue reading Spring migration and birds of prey in Extremadura – April 2013