Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Buzzard Celebration

Buzzards soaring in celebration following DEFRA's back-down today.

Monday, May 28, 2012


Understandably wary birds.  This pair were using one of the many nest boxes placed on the high electricity pylons just east of the Hortobagy NP and since the population crash of the Suslik, have adapted to feeding on Pigeons.  The female here is buzzard-size and seemed easily out-witted by a passing feral pigeon - almost Cheetah like, expending energy in a short burst rather than what I might have expected from a Peregrine which would have turned and come back for more.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Whiskered Tern

One of my favourites from the Hortobagy NP.  In the flooded areas managed by the national park, the abundance of birdlife was a spectacle to behold.  No people but great numbers of birds and great diversity from soaring White-tailed Eagles to three species of marsh tern, flocks of Ferruginous Duck and an array of wading birds.
My 30D really struggled with autofocus on these Terns so these are using manual focus.


It was interesting to see how abundant the Cuckoo is in Hungary, both the lowlands and hill country.  At Monor near Budapest there were at least half a dozen males competing for the females and a great opportunity to see behaviour that would be difficult to see on the home patch given the way things are with Cuckoo populations in the UK.  Large catepillar food seemed in plentiful supply.

The lower image was taken in the Hortobagy where this female had been watched hawking Sparrowhawk-like over the reeds waiting to lay in the warbler nests.  This is behaviour I hadn't seen before first-hand.

Thursday, May 24, 2012


A magnificent bird which gave spectacular views from a well-known motorway service station east of Budapest.  Of the three aquilla eagles that breed in Hungary, this one is by far the most common, their staple diet being Brown Hare.  We also saw a few Lesser Spotted and a pair of Golden Eagle, one of only two pairs left in Hungary, a third apparently being lost to secondary poisoning in March of this year.

Latest from Vauxhall

Only available in Cream.   Bradnor Hill Golf Course.

Ural Owl

These birds seem to be doing very well in North Eastern Hungary.  The top bird is a female showing abraided feathers where she is brooding young.  The second image is a male at a further location and nesting only about 10m from a tree with nesting White-backed Woodpecker.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Hungarian Woodpeckers

Some challenging photography in the forests in the Zemplen Hills but a great time spent with all but two of our European woodpeckers, Three-toed not being present in Hungary.  Failed only in seeing or hearing Lesser Spotted so no change there!

Also managed some great views of a pair of Grey-headed but didn't have camera to hand.

Black, Middle Spotted, White-backed, Syrian and Wryneck.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Hungary for Red-foots

A few images of Red-footed Falcons taken last week in Hungary.  Fantastic birds.

Monday, May 07, 2012

Morning Chorus

Nice to have no rain and a little sunshine this morning.  The Cuckoo has at last found his voice and the Warbler numbers have increased significantly.  Sadly no Grasshopper Warblers or Nightingales heard so far this spring around Willington.

New Cygnets

A brand new family of eight Cygnets hatched on Sunday on the local settling lagoon.