Lizards and birding along the Trieste Gulf

The Isonzo river signs, on many aspects, a border between the North-italian plains of Po valley and the Balkan ranges that connect the Karst with Dinaric Alps and Dalmatia. That’s why the Trieste and Karst area is so special in Italy, because is often nearer to Slovenia and Croatia, about flora and fauna, than to the remaining part of the peninsula.

I visited the area in order to localize a couple of dalmatian lizards that here reach their north-eastern limit of distribution, but I enjoyed there the very rich avifauna as well. Continue reading “Lizards and birding along the Trieste Gulf”


Raptors and butterflies in the Colli Asolani

This year I visited in total 3 times the Asolo hills (“Colli Asolani”), in Treviso province, during the second half of August, when since 1994 an increasing number of birdwatchers meet to count the raptors on fall migration. The usual number of counted birds, in about 3 weeks each year, was between 6,000 and 12,000, but in 2017 the migration was different, with a number of migrants much lower than usual (almost 4,000 birds), probably because of a different flyway taken, apparently far from the hills.  Continue reading “Raptors and butterflies in the Colli Asolani”

Little Grebes and gentians along the Misurina lake

The area of the “Lago di Misurina”, in the Auronzo di Cadore municipality, is another breathtaking Dolomites scenery, being tha lake surrounded by gorgeous dolomite mountains like Cristallo (3,221  m), Sorapis (3,205 m), Cadini di Misurina (2,839 m), Torre dei Scarperi (2,687 m) and, above all, the renowed Tre Cime di Lavaredo (2,999 m). Continue reading “Little Grebes and gentians along the Misurina lake”

Great August birding in Valle Vecchia

The second half of summer is always one of the slowest times of the year for birdwatching, with very secretive and silent birds and a very low number of migrants and eventual vagrants. So it has been a great surprise to have a so amazing day in Valle Vecchia of Caorle (Venice/Venezia province) right in the middle of August, with almost 90 species of birds observed!

Continue reading “Great August birding in Valle Vecchia”

Biowatching in the Catinaccio/Rosengarten

The group of mountains known with the name of Catinaccio in Italian and Rosengarten in German hosts some of the best scenaries of the Dolomites. The highest peak reaches the 3,002 m, but probably the most photogenic rocks are the Torri del Violet (2,821 m), 7 pinnacles of vertical dolomite. The area arround the range includes a number of valleys and slopes with screes, alpine meadows and conifer woodlands with an interesting biodiversity.

Continue reading “Biowatching in the Catinaccio/Rosengarten”

In the land of “tilaventina” Bee-orchid

The “tilaventina” form of Common Bee-orchid (Ophrys apifera) is particular variety, usually defined as a “lusus” (= “joke” in Latin), that can be locally find only in Italy in few places of Lombardy, Veneto and Friuli-Venezia Giulia. I went to see them along the Piave riverbed, in Treviso province, where there are some very promising dry meadows. Continue reading “In the land of “tilaventina” Bee-orchid”