Friday, 13 May 2016

12th May - Pullach, Bavaria, Germany

Over the course of the last eight years I have been travelling back and forth to Germany, Munich to be specific, on business.  The offices are close to woods, and surrounded also by many industrial buildings.  Despite this there is quite a bit of wildlife about, and this is helped in the summer by the fact that the grass is allowed to grow, attracting insects and butterflies.

In the spring as I walk to the office I can hear the song of Black Redstart, and there are several pairs around in the area.  On my last trip I took a camera with me, the first time I have had the chance to dos so, and hoped that the birds would show as well as they do when I have not had a camera.

I knew the Redstarts were about as I could hear them, but on the first day it was only the female that showed, and she kept her distance.

Moving between the ground and the nearby tree, the red tail constantly flicking.

Another visitor to the area was a pair of Great Spotted Woodpeckers, their call heralding their arrival.  They found the small trees attractive for some reason.

It wasn't until the last day of my trip that finally the male appeared, using some of the metal cages above the car park as a perch to watch for any opportunity for food in the grass.

Turning the head to look before dropping down and returning to the perch.

It then flew across to the other side, using a similar perch.

And as it dropped down, there was a flash of red as it flicked the tail.

The male then disappeared, to be replaced by the female, who adopted the same perch and feeding behaviour.

I suspect that they have a nest close by, probably in the roof of the building.

Finally there was another visitor, a vole that would appear from between the wooden decking, coming out to feed and then carry seed back to the safety under the decking.

This little fella needs to be careful under there though, a few years ago I captured this encounter between a Grass Snake, and a Toad.

The Grass Snake having come up between the decking and caught the Toad, and then started to try and swallow it.  What it didn't realise though was that it couldn't get back below the decking, with the toad to swallow it, or if it did swallow it then it would have to come out onto the deck, and that might not be safe.

The battle was still going on when I left the office, and when I returned the next day the Toad was still there, and the snake gone.  Miraculously the Toad while a  little damaged seemed to be still alive, but probably extremely shocked

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