Bird calls courses in April

Saturday – Sunday, April 26 – 27, 2014

Bird calls courses are a traditional part of our spring program for a couple of years. This year we planned them in two terms – April and May. The first one took place during the last April weekend and also the weather was typically April-crazy.

On Saturday it drizzled from the early morning and the rain repeated during the whole day. A dense mist hanged above lakes, buffet was closed and very few people appeared. We were forced to pack our stand and cancel the last walk around three in the afternoon due to intense rain. Despite the weather we managed to record 22 bird species, among them Grey-headed Woodpecker (Picus canus) and calling Common Cuckoo (Cuculus canorus). We were pleased also by flying Greylags (Anser anser) above our heads.

The situation on Sunday was totally different. The sun shone all the day and large numbers of visitors were coming. Besides our regular four walks we guided another three: one as a part of Forestry days 2014 at Partizánska lúka, one for a group of geocachers and one private for the winner in last year´s Forestry days competition.

The first walk was accompanied mainly by voices of Blackbirds (Turdus merula), Song Thrushes (Turdus philomelos) and Robins (Erithacus rubecula). These species already nest, so now they sing only early in the morning or late in the evening, alternatively after rain. The second walk took place around Partizánska lúka. Long-tailed Tits (Aegithalos caudatus) were flying right at the meeting point, at the bonfire, so instead of a boring introduction, we started directly with birdwatching. We moved towards Klepáč. On our way we heard Chaffinches (Fringilla coelebs), Great Tits (Parus major), Blackbirds, Song Thrushes and finally we heard also Collard Flycatcher (Ficedula albicollis) and Wren (Troglodytes troglodytes), which said goodbye to this group.

The third group already waited at Želená studnička. Together we watched a couple of Great Tits feeding their progeny, heard Blackbirds, Common Firecrest (Regulus ignicapillus), Robin, Collared Flycatcher and even one Wood Warbler (Phylloscopus sibilatrix). This group was followed by the biggest one, which consisted of 65 geocachers. They had the opportunity to observe small Common Firecrest, a Song Thrush chick sitting at a branch and Common Buzzards (Buteo buteo) flying over our heads. We showed Great Tits through spotting scope to the youngest participants.

The course of the last two groups was similar. Common Firecrest at the beginning, than Song Thrush chick, a few more song birds – Chaffinches, tits, Collared Flycatchers and finally we looked at a Great Tit nest. The event was very successful and we taught how to recognize the calls of some birds nearly 100 people.

List of observed species:
Greylag Goose (Anser anser)
Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos)
Grey Heron (Ardea cinerea)
Common Buzzard (Buteo buteo)
Common Wood Pigeon (Columba palumbus)
Common Cuckoo (Cuculus canorus)
Middle Spotted Woodpecker (Dendrocopos medius)
Great Spotted Woodpecker (Dendrocopos major)
Black Woodpecker (Dryocopus martius)
European Green Woodpecker (Picus viridis)
Grey-headed Woodpecker (Picus canus)
Northern Raven (Corvus corax)
Coal Tit (Periparus ater / Parus ater)
Eurasian Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus / Parus caeruleus)
Great Tit (Parus major)
Long-tailed Tit (Aegithalos caudatus)
Willow Warbler (Phylloscopus trochilus)
Eurasian Blackcap (Sylvia atricapilla)
Common Firecrest (Regulus ignicapilla)
Eurasian Wren (Troglodytes troglodytes)
Eurasian Nuthatch (Sitta europaea)
Eurasian Treecreeper (Certhia familiaris)
Common Starling (Sturnus vulgaris)
Common Blackbird (Turdus merula)
Song Thrush (Turdus philomelos)
Common Nightingale (Luscinia megarhynchos)
Collared Flycatcher (Ficedula albicollis)
Eurasian Tree Sparrow (Passer montanus)
Grey Wagtail (Motacilla cinerea)
Common Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs)
Hawfinch (Coccothraustes coccothraustes)
European Greenfinch (Chloris chloris / Carduelis chloris)
European Goldfinch (Carduelis carduelis)

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