Il Birdwatching Italiano

TUSCANY: 27/4 - 4/5/98 by A. Marcone

This is a short report of a trip I made in Tuscany (Central Italy) from April 27 to May 4, 1998. The reason for my trip was a conference I had to attend near Siena from the 27th until the 30th.

On the 27th my way from Northern Italy to Siena I made a brief stop at Massaciuccoli lake, near Lucca. There I visited the LIPU oasis and walked the path which overlooks the reedbeds (the sightings made there are marked MA in the list below). In Siena I was staying in an old "Certosa" out of town and in the breaks of the conference (and of the rain) I managed a few walks in the countryside (sightings marked SI). On the 30th I moved to the Grosseto area and spent a few days visiting the following main sites: Orbetello lagoons and surronding area (OR), hills between Orbetello, Manciano and Capalbio (HI), Marina di Alberese and mouth of the river Ombrone (AL), Diaccia Botrona -a big marsh near Castiglion della Pescaia- (DB), WWF oasis of Bosco Rocconi, near Roccalbegna (RO). On May 1st I toured some of these areas with Matteo Lausetti, a very good local birder who is also on EuroBirdNet (and in the morning another EBNer joined us: Maurizio Sighele): Matteo's expertise with the area and its birds where very helpful not only on that day, but also for suiggestioons on where to go the following days, so I thank him once more. On May 4th I headed back North, but I stopped at the mouth of the river Serchio (SE), near Pisa, for a little more birding.

The list of birds seen follows. Obviously I didn't look for the more common species and e.g. I missed Blackcap and saw very few tits or chaffinches. My major misses were Great Spotted Cuckoo and Lesser Grey Shrike. Also shorebirds were fewer, both in variety and numbers, than I expected.

Little Grebe Tachybaptus ruficollis OR
Great Crested Grebe Podiceps cristatus OR
Cory's Shearwater Calonectris diomedea AL
Yelkouan Shearwater Puffinus yelkouan AL
Great Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo OR
Common Shelduck Tadorna tadorna OR
Mallard Anas platyrhynchos OR, AL
Greater Flamingo Phoenicopterus ruber OR about 300, DB about 200
Little Egret Egretta garzetta OR, AL, DB
Gray Heron Ardea cinerea OR, DB
Great Egret Ardea alba OR, DB
Cattle Egret Bubulcus ibis AL
Squacco Heron Ardeola ralloides OR
Little Bittern Ixobrychus minutus OR
Black Kite Milvus migrans HI
Short-toed Eagle Circaetus gallicus DB
Marsh-Harrier Circus aeruginosus MA, OR, DB
Montagu's Harrier Circus pygargus HI
Buzzard Buteo buteo AL
Kestrel Falco tinnunculus OR, AL
Lanner Falcon Falco biarmicus RO
Pheasant Phasianus colchicus OR
Coot Fulica atra OR, DB
Whimbrel Numenius phaeopus AL
Spotted Redshank Tringa erythropus DB
Common Sandpiper Tringa hypoleucos OR, AL
Sanderling Calidris alba SE
Little Stint Calidris minuta OR
Dunlin Calidris alpina OR, AL
Thick-knee Burhinus oedicnemus OR, AL
Oystercatcher Haematopus ostralegus OR, SE
Black-winged Stilt Himantopus himantopus OR, DB
Pied Avocet Recurvirostra avosetta DB
Gray Plover Pluvialis squatarola OR
Audouin's Gull Larus audouinii SE
Yellow-legged Gull Larus cachinnans common everywhere but SI
Black-headed Gull Larus ridibundus OR, AL, DB
Whiskered Tern Chlidonias hybridus OR, DB
White-winged Tern Chlidonias leucopterus OR, DB
Black Tern Chlidonias niger OR
Sandwich Tern Sterna sandvicensis OR, AL
Rock Dove Columba livia feral
Turtle-Dove Streptopelia turtur OR
Eurasian Collared-Dove Streptopelia decaocto common everywhere
Cuckoo Cuculus canorus SI
Barn Owl Tyto alba HI
European Scops-Owl Otus scops HI
Common Swift Apus apus common everywhere
European Bee-eater Merops apiaster OR, AL
European Roller Coracias garrulus HI, AL
Hoopoe Upupa epops OR
Green Woodpecker Picus viridis SI, OR
Eurasian Jay Garrulus glandarius common everywhere
Magpie Pica pica very common everywhere
Eurasian Jackdaw Corvus monedula AL, HI
Hooded Crow Corvus corone cornix very common everywhere
Red-backed Shrike Lanius collurio OR, AL, HI
Woodchat Shrike Lanius senator OR, HI
Eurasian Blackbird Turdus merula common everywhere
Common Starling Sturnus vulgaris SI, AL
Spotted Flycatcher Muscicapa striata OR
Common Nightingale Luscinia megarhynchos OR
Whinchat Saxicola rubetra OR
Common Stonechat Saxicola torquata very common OR, HI, DB
Northern Wheatear Oenanthe oenanthe OR
Eurasian Nuthatch Sitta europaea SI
Long-tailed Tit Aegithalos caudatus SI
Sand Martin Riparia riparia OR
Barn Swallow Hirundo rustica common everywhere
House Martin Delichon urbica AL, OR (fewer than expected)
Zitting Cisticola Cisticola juncidis OR, DB
Cetti's Warbler Cettia cetti MA
Moustached Warbler Acrocephalus melanopogon MA
Eurasian Reed-Warbler Acrocephalus scirpaceus MA
Great Reed-Warbler Acrocephalus arundinaceus OR
Sardinian Warbler Sylvia melanocephala common
Subalpine Warbler Sylvia cantillans SE
Great Tit Parus major SI
Blue Tit Parus caeruleus SI
Crested Lark Galerida cristata OR, AL, HI
Eurasian Skylark Alauda arvensis AL
Italian Sparrow Passer domesticus italiae common everywhere
Eurasian Tree Sparrow Passer montanus OR
White Wagtail Motacilla alba SI
Yellow Wagtail Motacilla flava DB
Tawny Pipit Anthus campestris AL
Chaffinch Fringilla coelebs HI
European Serin Serinus serinus SI
European Greenfinch Carduelis chloris SI
European Goldfinch Carduelis carduelis common everywhere
Cirl Bunting Emberiza cirlus SI, HI
Corn Bunting Emberiza calandra common everywhere


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