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Thursday, 19 June 2008

8-12--6-08 Prague

A five day trip to Prague, costing only £120 for flight and hotel. it's cheaper than going away in the U.K. , it's a fabulous city but I will not bore you with loads of photos of old buildings, if you want to see it go , local transport is excellent , transfer from the airport to the hotel, which was well out of the city and not even on the tourist map, ( but it did happen to be right on the edge of a huge forest park) cost 26czk about 80p and was so easy, being outside the city gives you a break from the hustle of the centre, the weather was very hot and sunny, the down side of this is it is weary walking around, and trying to dodge the "sun umbrellas" carried mainly by the Japanese ,being a race on the small side I feared a poke in the eye.
I had been to Prague before so knew my way around a little ,but you just follow the crowds to the sights if you like, as I said staying well out gives you an added break the forest was huge mostly open Oak plus large areas of open Pine,Jays a plenty coming down to the pool at the hotel, seen from the room (with a balcony,now that's posh) also GSW,Kes, Willow, & Chiff from the room with a distant Eagle sp, there are plenty of paths going off in all directions ,what a contrast walking through in the cool shade and then to an open area, with Speckled Wood common, Small Heath in the larger open areas , at first I thought they where going to be something else as they seemed much larger than ours.
On the last day I had a few hours walking around as our flight was not till the evening ,luggage stored free at the hotel, it was off, Red Deer picked out till it got my scent,paths are tarmac so you can walk silent, Red Squire ll 4. Wood Warblers 5,Redstart,Black Redstart, and a family of Short Toed landed on a tree right beside me as I walked along ( wish I had brought my big lens) GSW I saw at least 20 with three family parties making lots of noise ,especially when a Sparrowhawk took one, but heard loads more, Grey headed is recorded,here so everytime I heard the tap of a woodpecker I checked them out ,while trying to locate one in an open area (actually I had decided to turn back there) got it at the top another GSW, but turning my head I saw a Black Woodpecker drop onto the base of an Oak and start to climb , have you ever shouted out under your breath, I was elated a bogey bird put to rest, what a stonker, big & black with a red head , even I could not get that wrong !!! I had met an english couple the day before who had come out to look for Grey headed & Black, heading back to the hotel feeling pretty good with myself, I seemed to walk for ages till I came out overlooking a built up area, realising I was lost, like I said it is a very large area, think, think, what to do the hotel is on the edge so how did I miss it ???, ask a local as a Jogger came by Roztily (metro station near the hotel) I said pointing in different directions, sorry I don't speak German was the reply as he jogged off, Americans don't you just love them, German, bloody German, when does a northern accent sound like German!!!!, next a dog walker she has to be local Roztily I said copying the pronunciation from the metro announcer, she rattled off a very long sentence, non of which made a word of sense, but the gestures did ,where would we be without the international aid of gestures, anyway I found my way back some hours later than I said I would be, to be met with a bit of a scowl, well she should have come with me , all I could think of was Black Woodpecker, a great days birding on a city break !!!!!!!!!
Charles Bridge it is being renovated just out of shot on the left so not at it's best
Another view from down the river
The famous clock in the Old Town Square

Boats ply up and down the river but there are numerous weirs so they do not go too far
Another view from one of the many bridges
Red one of 4 seen
Speckled Woods Common
Make it whatever you want , it just caught my eye.
A grotty shot of a lifer, Black Woodpecker, it's the blob half way up.

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