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Ultima Frontiera - Ultimate Photography: Days Five and Six

Day Five

Today was a "free day" with no hides allocated. Julia and I decided to use one of the electric buggies to venture a bit further afield within the reserve. Making occasional stops, we drove down to the reserve entrance. Photo-opportunities were limited initially, but a few species showed well, and Marsh Harriers were unphased by the buggy. A good selection of wetland birds were seen or heard.


Top row: Male Marsh Harrier

Middle row - l to r: Lesser Grey Shrike; female Red-backed Shrike; Lesser Whitethroat

Bottom row: Swallow


As the Bee-eater hide was empty we took the opportunity to get some photographs. Four pair of Bee-eaters were prospecting the sandbanks for nesting sites.


Bee-eaters


After a spell on the Bee-eaters we had a wander around a couple of the lakes near the hide. A Barred Warbler showed briefly, but not well enough to be photographed. However the pinging of Bearded Tits alerted us to their presence and a pair were soon found that showed very well.


Bearded Tits


Earlier in the day we learnt that Little Crake were showing occasionally at one of the reedbed hides, so checking with Carlos, we booked it for the afternoon. The hide proved excellent with several amphibians and reptiles showing to keep us occupied between the time when the Little Crake showed itself.


Top row: European Pond Turtle; Marsh Frog

Middle row: Marsh Frog

Bottom row: Grass Snake; Marsh Frog


Little Crake


Day Six

Our final day and another trip on the Danube, this time heading to the Black Sea and Musura Bay with the target of Pallas's Gull, at their only known European breeding site. As we were on a tight deadline (we were heading back to Tulcea afterwards and then onto Bucharest ready for our flight on Saturday) we headed straight to Musura Bay, without stopping for any birds. On arrival at the Bay, our guides started to throw bits of fish out into the Danube, and we were soon surrounded by Caspian Gulls and eventually the large Pallas's Gull. The odd pelican also joined in the battle for food.


Top rows: Caspian Gull

Bottom rows: Pallas's Gull


We hope to revisit the Ultima Frontiera in 2025 - if you want to join us, get in touch.

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