Showing posts from August, 2014

Turkey #3: Other Animals

This is the last of a three part post on our trip to Turkey

As well as the birds, we also saw many other animals on the trip.

To start, we saw many spiders, some bigger than others! 

We also saw other arachnids in the shape of scorpions. The only one we saw was spotted whilst walking around with head torches. 

Another animal that we spotted with head torches was a toad. This toad had amazing colouring, but taking a picture was difficult, as it wouldn't stay still.

There were also a lot of crickets hopping around. One cricket caught our eye though. I've never seen anything like it.

One of the greatest moments of the trip actually didn't take place in Turkey itself! On a day trip to the Greek island of Meis, we saw a turtle! It was by pure luck that we chanced upon it. We had just left a restaurant, and, as we walked along the side of the harbour, we spotted a shape moving through the water. We followed it as it moved along the harbour, swimming under the boats. When it came up fo…

Turkey #2: Other Birds

This is the second of a three part post on our trip to Turkey.

Apart from the Shrikes, there are numerous other birds that we spotted in Turkey.

To begin, we saw three species of wheatear, Common, Dark-Eared and Isabelline. These were mainly spotted sitting on rocks, occasionally darting up to catch an insect.

We also saw numerous Rock Nuthatches, young and old. We normally saw them darting around at ground level catching small flying insects. These also came very close to where we were staying.

Another species we caught a couple of glimpses of is the Cretzchmar's Bunting. We only saw these through gaps in hedges, but we managed to get a picture.

We also saw Short-Toed Eagles on numerous occasions. They would soar over the mountains, in search of snakes and reptiles.

On the way to a beach one day, we saw two species that we weren't expecting to add to our Turkey list. The first one we spotted sitting on a telephone line next to the road. It was a European Roller. 

At the beach itself…

Turkey #1: Shrikes

This is the first of a three part post on our trip to Turkey.

One of the animals that you most commonly see in Turkey are birds, and the most frequently seen of them are the Shrikes. During our stay in Southern Turkey, we saw all of the species of shrikes you can see in Europe and the Middle East (except the Great Grey Shrike, which isn't in Turkey).

Most of the shrikes we saw were sighted in the more mountainous regions near the coast. As well as the stereotypical male shrikes, we also saw juveniles and females. From a shrike point of view, it was a very successful trip.

The Species

The species we saw most frequently was the Woodchat Shrike. They were normally perched on top of taller trees or telephone wires, looking out for prey such as lizards or small mammals.

We also saw what we presume is a juvenile Woodchat Shrike (below). If you disagree with this decision, please email:

The next species, we also saw reasonably frequently, the Red-Backed Shrike…