17th-27th June 2007


Wryneck (Jynx torquilla)

The valley close to the village of Tazha is a good area for photographing several species and we spent two days here. Our first target was a pair of nesting Wrynecks which performed beautifully in front of our hides. Both birds were obviously raiding local ant nests since they were feeding their young on a diet exclusively consisting of ants and their larvae.

Wryneck (Jynx torquilla)

Next on the agenda were the nesting Isabelline Wheatears which were common in the area. These were not quite so easy. We had identified a nest hole that was being visited every couple of minutes by the adults and set up a hide. Unfortunately, the slight breeze rustling the canvas of the tent seemed to be disturbing the birds so we had to dismantle the tent and try again the next day when it was totally calm. This time it was much more successful, and within minutes both birds were visiting the nest regularly.

Isabelline Wheatear (Oenanthe isabellina)

Isabelline Wheatear (Oenanthe isabellina)

The holes that the Isabelline Wheatears nest in are all made by the abundant European Sousliks (a curious little ground squirrel) that live in the area.

European Souslik (Spermophilus citellus)

The following two photos illustrate the power of the 600mm lens. Both photos were taken from the same spot. The first taken with a 28-105mm lens set at 35mm (the Long-legged Buzzard is only just visible in the top of the tree), while the second taken with the 600mm with a 1.4x converter attached.

Long-legged Buzzard (Buteo rufinus)

On a roadside puddle, Red-rumped Swallows and House Martins were collecting mud for their nests...

Red-rumped Swallow (Hirundo daurica)

Red-rumped Swallow (Hirundo daurica)

House Martin (Delichon urbica)

Black-headed Wagtails were common along the edges of the link road between the main road and Tahza village.

Black-headed Wagtail (Motacilla flava feldegg)

Nearby on a small pond were several species of dragonfly....

Southern Skimmer (Orthetrum brunneum)

Broad-bodied Chaser (Libellula depressa)

small beetle on Orlaya grandiflora flower

Viola sp.

On the final afternoon, we visited a nearby river in the hope that the Kingfishers would still be feeding young at their nest. Unfortunately, we were too late and the nest appeared to have been abandoned.

Dragonfly activity was quite interesting, however, and we found a small colony of Banded Darters as well as displaying Banded Demoiselles...

Banded Darter (Sympetrum pedemontanum)

Banded Darter (Sympetrum pedemontanum)

male Banded Demoiselle (Calopteryx splendens)

female Banded Demoiselle (Calopteryx splendens)

A White Stork also put in an appearance...

White Stork (Ciconia ciconia)


Cape Kaliakra Bulgaria map Trigrad