Sunday, 30 May 2010

French Assortment

I spent last week in France at a holiday cottage near to Perassay, a small village in the Indre region. Me and the wife were the first people to stay at our friends (Mo and Steve) newly restored and converted dwelling.

They've done an excellent job in converting the building (part of a very old barn) from a sheep shelter! See here - Stargazer Cottage

The cottage is in prime birding terrortory too. For example, Golden Orioles can be heard from the garden. Seeing them is another matter though as anyone who's tried to spot this elusive bird will testify. I just wish I'd got there earlier in spring before the green canopy covered the trees!

Besides the birds there is plenty of other wildlife in the area. Red Squirrels, Wild Boars, Pine Martins are some of the species that I failed to see. Here are some pictures of the stuff that I did manage to photograph...

Swallowtail Butterfly - Mo had kept a pupa in a glass jar all winter long and as luck would have it the butterfly emerged whilst I was there to photograph it.

We spent a day at La Brenne. Known as “The Land of a Thousand Lakes” it is a nature park which covers a large area and is home to many wetland birds as well as other interesting plants and animals.
Grey Heron 

You would have thought that large, juicy Frogs living in France would keep a low profile but not a bit of it. This lot could be heard from the car park. In fact they were so loud that at first I thought they were some type of exotic duck.

 Great White Eagret

Purple Heron 

Fresh Water Tortoise

I thought only turtles had tails but the info board on the wall of the hide said that these were Tortoises?

I spent a while driving around the deserted country lanes near to our cottage and did the bird watching from the car. I heard and caught fleeting glimpses of many birds but the only ones to pose long enough for me to stop the car, lean out of the window and get some shots were these Red Backed Shrikes - male first then the female.

I thought it a bit strange to find this Roe Deer(?) feeding during the daylight hours.

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