Friday, 19 August 2011

France Day 2 - 09/08

A reasonably start and a half an hour drive saw us at the Eurotunnel terminal near Foulkstone on the south coast. The crossing itself was as you would imagine pretty unimpressive, however just 35 minutes we emerged in France near to Calais and on the way out of the terminal the road passes some marshes next to a petrol station. We pulled over I quickly noted one, then two, then three Marsh Harriers hunting close by along with 2 Great Black Back Gulls, Coots and a few Mute Swans. The campsite we stayed at is in a town called Muides sur Loire, which as the name suggests is on the beautiful Loire river in the north of mid France. This is about 5-6 hours drive from Calais which gave me plenty of time to add more species to the trip list (I set myself a target of 75 species for the trip).

It soon became obvious that birds of prey are more common in France that here in Britain. There were Kestrels and Buzzards every couple of miles or so along with smaller numbers of Sparrowhawks and on one occasion a gorgeous juvenile Montague's Harrier. We also spotted a few mammals including plenty of Rabbits and a pair of Roe Deer that were feeding on the edge of a small copse.

Eventually we reached the campsite and our static caravan which would be home for the next 9 days. There were lots of tall oak trees between the caravans which proved to be a haven for small birds, with lots of Blue and Great Tits, Chaffinches, Wrens and lots of noisy Nuthatch's. Still no photos as I hadn't unpacked anything but there will be plenty in the coming posts.

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