During the second half of December I stayed another time at the isle Greifswalder Oie
(northeastern Germany, Baltic Sea). As expected there was a lot of snow and for a
few days the coast was frozen in a belt of 50m or as far as the horizon.
During October and November I was a part of a monitoring program that
investigates migrating and roosting birds in southeastern Germany.
To my pleasure I was able to make a few recordings of bird calls and to
take a few pictures of flying birds, to improve my identification skills.
In spring/summer 2010 I did several monitoring jobs. One of them regarded
the occurence of the River Warbler Locustella fluviatillis in the alluvial forest
Only a few singers could be found, one of them in a marvellous area called
Papitzer Lachen (Papitz`s Puddles).
In the mid of May 2010 I was part of a short birding-tour to Austria.
We visited the famous Wienerwald, Neusiedler See and the
Fertö-Hanság Nemzeti Park in northern Hungary.
At the end of our six-day trip we had 140 bird species at our list.
I recorded only a few of them. The weather conditions were not the best
- always a strong wind was blowing.
Our mission to observe the famous Ural Owl Strix uralensis at
Wienerwald failed. There are too less individuals in this region to get a
safe chance for observe one of them.
Many thanks to our guide Richard Zink, who did a great job!
Though, I detected nearly all of the species I requested to see or record
- first of all the amazing Eurasian Hoopoe Upupa epops. In Germany these
species, mostly living in special protencted or military areas, became very
rare. We spotted only a few singers, filling the air with there curious song,
because it was late in the season. But anyhow, for me it was really
At an ornithologist conference in May 2010 I met Werner Sykora from Bad Düben
(Saxony, Germany). He´s a guard who protects Beavers Castor fiber in
Over several years he made a lot of recordings inside of beaver lodges. In addition
it is notable that Werner builds most of his equipment by himself!
Please listen to a selection of two “Best of CD´s” he shared with me and feel free
to get in contact.*
© All recordings by Werner Sykora
* P.S: unfortunately Werner Sykora deceased in 2011
Trying to handle the bitter feelings of loosing a friend by death, during the last
weeks, I have started to record inside and along a quarry in Großsteinberg
(Saxony, 25km from Leipzig) once again. It was one of the places, we visited
Sadly the breeding pair of Eagle Owls Bubo bubo had left this place, and most
of the Amphibians as well. The axcavation in the quarry has been boost anew.
For this reason a lot of small habitats were destroyed recently.
So I focused on the forest nearby and found a lot of interesting birds.
At the end of March my companion Marcus and I looked for amphibians, particularly
for Moor Frogs Rana arvalis and European Toads Bufo bufo.
I hoped to get a few recordings in a quiet a surrounding – but our mission failed.
Our destination was a nature reserve in the north of Leipzig called Papitzer Lachen
There are a few puddles surrounded by meadows, small bushes and rows of trees.
To our surprise there were a lot of European Fire-bellied Toads Bombina bombina
in full activity. But there were a lot of people too!
Their dogs had been flushing birds and so on… In addition there was heavy noise
from the motorway two kilometers away.
It´s springtime! Since I have been reading the book The Sound Approach to
birding – a guide to understanding birdsounds for me, spring is the most
exciting season of the year. Studying the development of bird songs (and calls?)
is my favorite activity right now.
One of the first arrivals in the new year is the Song Trush Turdus philomelos.
Generally it´s crystallised song seems to be simple, but it´s plastic song is
longer, with less gaps between the verses and contains many imitations.