Thursday, October 1, 2009

Poland round-up - Bieszczady National Park

This newt was found in a puddle at Bieszczady, we had high hopes that it would be an endemic Carpathian newt but it is in fact the the more widespread Alpine newt (Triturus alpestris).

Our trip to Poland ended with four days at Bieszczady National Park. This park is fantastic, a very high density of large mammals remain - although we failed to see any of them! One of the highlights at Bieszczady was hearing Ural and Tengmalm's owl (calling in response to playback but not responsive enough to come in sadly). We also managed another white-backed woodpecker here and got brief views of our 8th and final woodpecker species - grey-headed. A spring trip would be good here for birds and it looks good for a summer trip too (butterflies and amphibians). I cannot wait to go back.

Yellow-bellied toad (Bombina varigata) - a pioneer species, often found (like this one was) in unvegetated puddles along tracks.

Bieszczady is a beautiful spot, quite intensely managed (especially for timber) and with plenty of recreation use but despite all this we encountered fresh sign of wolf, bison and brown bear both inside and outside the park.

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