Bialowieza, second morning


Bialowieza, 18 May, in the morning.

Again, great reed warblers singing near the palace park entrance.

Fieldfares.

In the palace garden, goldfinch and thrush nightingale.

Garden warbler on a fence.

Walking back to the village, a white stork flying.

A common tern.

A willow tit on the parking lot.

A serin singing from the top of a coniferous tree.

This is a video of a little spotted woodpecker; a bird which we did not see in Bialowieza though it lives there. However, we saw so many other bird and other species!

Bialowieza, outside the primeval forest


Bialowieza, 17 May.

This morning, we discovered the Bialowieza primeval forest.

In the afternoon, we discovered the beauty of the Bialowieza region outside the strict reserve.

In the village, map lichen growing on stones.

Fieldfares near the palace park entrance.

Near a river bridge just outside the park, sedge warblers, and chiffchaff sounds.

A common sandpiper, standing on a small log in the river.

We go back to the palace park entry gate. A spotted flycatcher sitting on it.

This video is about a spotted flycatcher nest in the Netherlands; juveniles fledging.

A black redstart sitting on a village roof.

A female red-backed shrike on a shrub.

A common snipe sitting on top of an electricity pole.

As the forest trail crosses a brook, Lymnaeidae snails.

Black alder trees.

Wild boars have left tracks of their meal.

Later, leftovers of conifer cones eaten by one or more squirrels.

Thelypteris palustris ferns near a brook.

We arrive at a small zoo, with mammal species of Bialowieza.

A sign says that about 70% of wolves’ prey in Bialowieza nature reserve consists of red deer; 15% roe deer; 10% wild boar; and only a few % European bison and elk, both probably difficult for wolves to hunt. In the pristine forest, a different predator, the tawny owl, of course eats completely different prey.

Wolf numbers in Bialowieza reserve are supposed to be about twenty; lynx numbers 35-50.

Great tit and red-breasted flycatcher sounds.

On top of the fence of the European bison enclosure, a female pied flycatcher.

There is also an enclosure for horses, where it is tried to breed back the extinct tarpan.

December 2010: An attempt to boost Poland’s falling Eurasian lynx population is now underway. HUNTING BAN: But still Poland’s lynx population is declining: here.

Butterflies and blue tits


Today, to the cemetery.

A red admiral butterfly, sitting on a coniferous tree.

This video is called Baby Blue Tit not ready to leave the nest yet.

In a hole in a deciduous tree, a blue tit nest with babies calling and adults bringing food.

A speckled wood butterfly.

Blue tits nesting in ‘acoustic art’ – Go and listen to the chicks in the Cotswolds: here.

Bialowieza forest


This is a video about European bison in Poland. Recently, for the first time, two European bison calves were born in a Dutch nature reserve.

17 May 2009.

Like yesterday, early this morning we went to Bialowieza national park.

Still in the village, a great tit, a starling, and a greenfinch in a coniferous tree.

And a thrush nightingale singing.

In the palace park, the song of a wood warbler.

Also, cuckoo sounds.

We left the palace park through a path crossing a clearing.

A blackbird. Corncrake sound. The first one of many Burgundy snails. A yellowhammer singing.

This is a video of a Polish great spotted woodpecker hammering away on a steel pole.

Just before the strict reserve entrance gate, a great spotted woodpecker, hammering away on an English oak.

Water avens flowering.

The entrance of the strict reserve is a wooden gate, built in the 1920s by a southern Polish architect in the style of his native region, not Bialowieza. It is said to have been the inspiration for the entrance gate to the Jurassic Park in the film of that name.

The core of Bialowieza, the strict reserve, is primeval forest, unique now for the northern European lowlands.

The highest tree in Bialowieza is a Norway spruce, 54 meters high.

Important tree species in the forest are English oak, small-leaved lime, and common hornbeam. Also elms, Norway maple, and ash. Hawfinches here like to eat ash fruits.

Among the many plants of the undergrowth: woodruff, and Solomon’s seal.

This morning, we do not see the big mammals which Bialowieza is famous for, like European bison, elk, wolf, and lynx (see also here). However, we do see a red squirrel, eating a Norway spruce cone.

A common treecreeper climbing up. Common in Britain and Poland, but not in continental western Europe.

Many fungi. A blackbird singing.

Ramsons flowering.

A red-breasted flycatcher singing.

Beard lichen growing on a Thymelaeaceaen shrub.

Herb Paris flowering.

Then, a middle spotted woodpecker and a three-toed woodpecker, together on the same tree.

A sulphur shelf fungus.

Then, a white-backed woodpecker, low on a big tree. Like the three-toed woodpecker, this species indicates healthy big forest.

Cardamine bulbifera flowers.

A Fomitopsis pinicola fungus on a fallen small-leaved lime tree.

A parasitical plant, toothwort.

As we pass the extrance gate, now exit gate, a yellowhammer singing on a tree.

A whinchat on the field, flying from grass stem to grass stem.

Middle spotted woodpecker in the Netherlands: here.