Tag Archives: St. Émilion

Bird watching (of the feathered variety*!)

Graham and I both enjoy watching the variety of bird-life that we can see from our terrace, and have a small inventory of “regulars” that visit the feeder and new bird bath.  I, with my short sight, have a tendency to squint appropriately myopically in the direction of most of them: too slow to don my glasses or grab the binoculars from the sideboard.  Furthermore, not having lived in Europe for nearly 30 years, I’m not exactly au fait with the indigenous species either.  Yes, I can tell you that we’ve blackbirds, thrushes, and ring doves, sparrows, wag-tails and a few different types of tit.  In summer there are the house martins and swifts, and in the winter a cheeky robin joins those feasting on the fat balls and nuts we put out to attract the birds to the terrace.  I know the moorhens, swans, ducks, egrets, and herons that inhabit the river too.  But that’s really it.  So, it was a pleasure to have keen bird watchers staying this summer.  Sadly, a case of luggage lost between Oslo and Bordeaux meant that our guests were a pair of binoculars short.  A lack we were able to cover.

As our guests were busy enjoying the sights and sounds of Bergerac, and Beynac and canoeing and checking out one of the grand chateaux in the St. Émilion area that shares their family name, we didn’t think that there’d be much time left for bird watching during the week, but it appears that we were wrong.  When we met to take back the keys and say our goodbyes, we were presented with the most delightful sketch of the view from Les Terraces and a list of all of the bird species spotted over a couple of days.  An impressive variety of 35 different birds. It is my pleasure to share it with you here. 15-08-08 birds list

Birds list
Birds list

I’m delighted to see that the elusive kingfisher was seen on the Dordogne, and would love to know who was the prize-winner for that, as Marika was very keen to see one and had promised a treat for the first person to spot one for her.

It will be interesting to see if future guests will add to the list, and what seasonal visitors they will see in addition to the year-round residents.

 *It is possible to engage in another sort of bird-watching, if one chooses to train one’s binoculars on the Plage des Bardolets instead of the river-bank!