Extra Heath Birding round Bonn

I had simply been to Wahner Heide (heath) a couple of weeks in the past and coated that go to in my final submit, however I discovered myself again in the identical space with my mother and father for a brief Sunday go to. The heath is definitely fairly intensive and there are another areas that I wish to discover, however we went to the identical spot we have been ultimately time as a result of it’s best to succeed in. Extra forested areas apparently maintain good numbers of Woodcock, and Eurasian Nightjars are additionally round (though uncommon), so this website warrants a number of future visits.

On this go to, the sky was gray and it was windy on a regular basis, which didn’t make for notably good situations. I used to be particularly trying ahead to take some higher images of the birds I noticed final time, which I solely managed partly. Nonetheless, we have been rewarded with wonderful sightings, which greater than made up for the restricted photograph alternatives. In spite of everything, I’d slightly name myself a birder than a hen photographer, though I’ve to confess that I get pleasure from doing each roughly equally. I do really feel that there’s a slight separation into “tribes” of people that choose calling themselves “birders” and others “hen photographers”, and that the previous barely look down on the latter (and maybe vice versa?). I’m undecided if that is solely my restricted expertise, let me know! Not less than I’ve the sensation that putting the emphasis on observing slightly than photographing birds is usually thought-about extra ‘pure’, no matter meaning… To flee the dichotomy, I might merely say that I’m a birder who loves photographing birds every time the chance arises. Though then once more if I say that, I higher have good images to justify this, which is usually not the case (maybe I might at the very least blame it on the climate this time?).

Frequent Stonechats and Tree Pipits have been notably energetic, like final time. A spotlight for me was the show of the latter, with its slow-motion dive on the finish of its show flight accompanied by its stunning tune.

Tree Pipit

Woodlarks have been fairly common as properly, and we noticed two or three pairs of those engaging birds of their tune flight or feeding on the bottom. I lastly managed to acquire some acceptable images of this species, which I didn’t handle on my final go to. The favorite a part of this species for me (aside from its tune) is the neat white “V” on the again of the top when the hen appears to be like away from you (solely barely seen on the photograph beneath).


Strolling alongside a sandy observe, we all of a sudden heard the unmistakeable name of a Wryneck, which we noticed quickly after in a bush at a ways. I knew that this species had been seen right here two weeks earlier, however didn’t anticipate to see it in any respect. This uncommon hen is unquestionably one in every of my favorite species in Europe, so I used to be very pleased to attach with it (and to listen to its name for the primary time).

Eurasian Wryneck

A Purple-backed Shrike was perched on pine on the fringe of the heath. It should’ve simply returned from Subsaharan Africa a couple of days earlier I assume. Whereas this hen isn’t unusual in Germany, I’ve solely seen this species as soon as within the area round Bonn (which I ought to in all probability blame partially on the infrequency of my birding outings). Apparently, this species’ German identify “Neuntöter”, translating to “9 killer”, apparently comes from the belief that it impales 9 prey gadgets earlier than beginning to feed on any one in every of them. Whereas experiments have proven that some birds (like crows and parrots) can depend, this rule unsurprisingly didn’t maintain when subjected to testing. Not that fact issues right here, I nonetheless assume it’s a really cool identify.

Purple-backed Shrike

One of many final birds I noticed earlier than we returned dwelling was a singing male European Pied Flycatcher. Extremely, this was the primary time I noticed a male of this species in breeding plumage (plus the primary time I heard its tune, simply as for the Wryneck). I’ve seen numerous people, particularly on migration on Heligoland in autumn final 12 months, however one way or the other a fantastically pied male evaded me till now. These sightings actually made me respect birding in spring, a really welcome change from the largely bleak birding in winter.

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