So glad to be back to this fabulous region in France for our tenth visit to explore the wildlife rich habitats.
The weather was amazing from start to finish with blue skies and temperatures around 25 degrees.
During our tour we explored the vast wetlands of the Camargue with large flocks of GLOSSY IBIS plus COLLARED PRATINCOLE, PURPLE HERONS, WHITE STORKS, GULL-BILLED TERNS, SLENDER-BILLED GULLS, KENTISH PLOVERS not to mention the wonderful GREATER FLAMINGO’S. Other species of note included GREAT SPOTTED CUCKOO, RED-BACKED SHRIKES, WOOD SANDPIPERS, EUROPEAN BEE-EATERS, SPECTACLED WARBLERS, LITTLE TERNS, MEDITERRANEAN GULLS and COMMON NIGHTINGALES everywhere!
Our time was also spent on the stony plains of La Crau with EUROPEAN ROLLERS, LESSER KESTRELS, TAWNY PIPITS, IBERIAN GREY SHRIKE, GRIFFON VULTURES, SHORT-TOED LARK, EURASIAN HOOPOE and hundreds of COMMON SWIFTS feeding low over the plains.
Finally we visited the limestone hills of Les Alpilles with trilling EUROPEAN CRESTED TITS, BONELLI’S EAGLE and scything ALPINE SWIFTS.
As always with our tours we don’t just look at birds and we were pleased to see WILD BOAR, COYPU, BROWN HARE and a fabulous range of butterflies including CLEOPATRA, WESTERN DAPPLED WHITE, PROVENCE CHALK-HILL BLUE, SOUTHERN WHITE ADMIRAL, EUROPEAN SWALLOWTAIL, WESTERN MARBLED WHITE, SCARCE SWALLOWTAIL and WALL BROWN amongst others.
Our new accommodation was ideally placed for all the birding sites and the food was fantastic. One bird we did well with was LITTLE BUSTARD as we discovered a pair on our pre-breakfast walk plus another on the plains of La Crau. We even saw at least three birds on the airport grasslands at Montpellier Airport from the terminal and from the plane, so wherever you may be, always keep an eye out for birds as they could be lurking anywhere!