Friday, 24 April 2015

Georgia Day 1

Hello

Together with three colleagues, yesterday I flew to the country of Georgia for a short birding trip in the Caucasus Mountains and other areas. Yesterday was taken up with travel but today we spent some time committed to roadside birding as we traveled from Tbilisi to Kezbagi.

Despite rain and cloud lower down and snow and ice higher up, a variety of raptors were migrating northwards. Although not a migrant, the best raptor was definitely the amazing Lammergeier with a couple of individuals flying overhead. Plenty of Black Kites and Steppe Buzzards were on the move or loafing about, and we also saw Steppe Eagle, Golden Eagle, Sparrowhawk, Lesser Kestrel, Hobby and Peregrine.

Summer visitors included wagtails, warblers, chats and hirundines plus Water Pipits, Night Heron, Purple Heron and Common Swift.

Heavy snow delayed us making it over the mountain pass to Kezbagi, with ice and blizzard conditions on the high tops and three snow ploughs working hard to keep the road open. Red-billed and Alpine Choughs kept us entertained while we waited.

Hopefully the weather tomorrow will be a little less severe!

Neil M


'Eastern' Common Redstart

'Eastern' Black Redstart

'Eastern' White Wagtail

Lammergeier

Black Kite

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