This year I led two different Naturetrek tours, one in May and one in June, in the south-western corner of Slovenia, following directly the arrival of spring, going from the left of the last snow, to the end of hibernation time for bears, to the bloom of meadows covered by innumerable flowers.
After the winter scouting (link), I went there the second half of spring, when the area was affected by heavy rain that falled the majority of the days, making the landscapes incredibly attractive and green, but reducing often the quantity of available light for the photography and hindering the field activities. The May trip was also influenced buy an unusual cold, with a light snowfall that whitened the surrounding hills.
Despite the weather conditions, the two trips were both successful, the first because of great birding (including the observations of Black Stork, White-tailed Eagle, Red-footed Falcon, Ural Owl and Corn Crake) and the second mainly because of the beauty of flowered meadows with amazing numbers of butterflies and orchids.
I had Brown Bears (Ursus arctos) from the comfortable Miha Mlakar hides (https://www.facebook.com/miha.mlakar) on both the trips, getting better observations during the June trip, but also an unexpected Wild Cat (Felis silvestris) and Red Deers (Cervus elaphus). Some night excursions by car allowed the view of other cool species of mammals like Northern White-breasted Hedgehog (Erinaceus roumanicus), Beech Marten (Martes foina) and Badger (Meles meles).
Both the tours, beside the Cerknica lake, Planinsko Polje, Snežnik and the Bloke Plateau, included the visit to the fascinating Križna jama, a cave that was decided to be left as much as possible natural, without any permanent artificial light and with a limited number of visitors each year: this choice was awarded by the survival of troglodyte species, like bats and interesting invertebrates, now disappeared in more touristic complexes like the Postojnska jama.
A small moth trap was settled twice outside the pension where I slept, in Markovec, having a very good harvest in June.
This photo-report wants to share once again the beauty of Slovenia in its multiple natural aspects, showing the pics in strict chronological order.