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Wednesday, 20 July 2016

Croatia, 2016

Sunrise, Istria
After a slow start with the first birds that I haven't already had in the UK this year seen 3 days into the break, it was a very pleasant morning on the nature reserve on the Premantura peninsular, Istria. Nothing rare, but fantastic views of Bee-eaters, Golden Orioles, Red-backed Shrikes, Lesser Grey Shrike, Cirl Buntings, Red-rumped Swallows, Tawny Pipits, Melodious Warblers, Sardinian Warblers, and the first Turtle Doves heard for some years.

The one field that held livestock was a magnet for insect-eating birds.  The large flock of hirundines was mainly Swallows, House Martins, a few Common Swifts and Red-rumped Swallows, and at least two Pallid Swift were picked up initially on call, then seen well.  Several Nightingales were heard grunting in the undergrowth and one made a poor attempt at song.
Butterflies were fairly plentiful but were extremely mobile.  I managed to catch up with a few and included several new ones.
Balkans Blue, underside

Southern White Admiral, topside

Southern White Admiral, underside
Near the entrance of the reserve was a tiny almost dried out stagnant pond.  The several dragonflies were standard fayre, and with the exception of the Darter it was almost like being in England!
Broad-bodied Chaser, male

Broad-bodied Chaser, male

Emperor, female ovipositing

Scarlet Darter, male
Hopefully a few more to follow.

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