Prague Wildlife

During last year I took to geocaching and I also realized that photography and geocaching are two activities that can be easily combined and matched together. Taking photos can be a great disguise or excuse to get close to the cache. Geocaching helps me discover new amazing places. And that’s how found that there are kingfishers in Prague in an area where I would never expect them.

Even though its name is common kingfisher (Alcedo atthis in latin), this bird is all but common in the Czech Republic. Here it is very rare and stricly protected species and therefore I was really suprised I saw it in recently revitalized area in Prague near industrial parts of the city.

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Catch me if you can…
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On the other side, grey heron (Ardea cinerea) is very common in Europe. In the Czech Republic, this species is also protected, but not as strictly as the kingfisher, due to the fact that it was being hunted in the past.

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And finally, the eurasian teal (Anas crecca), also called common teal.
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Holidays on Madeira (part 4)

Rabaçal valley is located within the Madeira Natural Park, on the northwest of the island, where we walked along the levadas to the waterfall Risco and the 25 Fountains. A levada is an irrigation channel or aqueduct on the island of Madeira. Hiking along these levadas was easy so I had lot of time to take some photos.

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Risco Waterfall
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The Madeiran chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs maderensis) is a small passerine bird in the finch family. It is a subspecies of the common chaffinch that is endemic to Madeira.

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25 Fountains – its name lives up to the number of fountains or little waterfalls around this pool.

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And this is view from Cabo Girão which is the second highest cliff face in the world. The viewpoint’s floor is made of transparent material and only standing on it is quite a breathtaking experience.

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Prague Zoo – Canon ZOOM

Storms from early morning are usually a bad sign for a photo event in a zoo. I was looking forward to this event but I really didn’t want to spend whole day in rain. In the end, I was pleasantly suprised when most of the day is sunny or little cloudy (with enough light coming through the clouds like from a huge light diffuser) – that’s very good weather for taking photos.

Canon ZOOM is a promo event held by Canon Czech Republic but this doesn’t mean that only Canon camera user can take part. Fortunately. Those who own Canon camera can try out new lens as well as new bodies. For the rest of us, there is a opportunity to have our photos printed on large format printers. For free. And there is also a competition – the most interesting photo of the day, taken of course in Prague Zoo. I always take part but never won anything…

And now some of the photos I took today:

The great white pelicans (Pelecanus onocrotalus).
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Double yawning pelican was little bit creepy.
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The Rainbow Lorikeet (Trichoglossus haematodus), I just love their colourful feathers.
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and the scaly-breasted Lorikeet (Trichoglossus chlorolepidotus)
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The great grey owl (strix nebulosa)
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The humboldt penguin (Spheniscus humboldti)
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When I got home I browsed through the photos, I realized that vast majority of them shows birds. So here is photo of some sitatungas, also called marshbuck, (Tragelaphus spekii).
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What? The obtrusive bird got to this photo too!

OK, finally, here is a non-bird photo – the bush dog (speothos venaticus).
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And that’s all for today. Next time I may post some more spring photos or I will choose to present beauties of Madeira – that’s where I am going for a holiday next week.

Late Afternoon in Prague Zoo – Part II

The weather these days is cold and sunny, only few degrees above 0 and that makes perfect conditions to go outside and take some photos. Yesterday, I went to Prague Zoo again, only about two hours before all the visitors would have to leave the zoo. And it was really cool, everything was lit with golden light, especially the exhibits on the southern hillside and there I took most of the photos. All these photos were taken when the sun was just above the horizon and therefore the colours are very warm.

Red Kite (Milvus milvus)

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Flamingo

Greater Flamingo (Phoenicopterus roseus), American Flamingo (Phoenicopterus ruber)
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Canada Goose (Branta canadensis)

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You can expect last part of photos from this set tomorrow… I hope…

Birds in Prague Zoo…

… and one unusual pair.

Altough the weather forecast promised sunny day the reality was quite opposite. Dark heavy clouds blocked all the sunlight and it was raining ocasionally. Not a perfect day for taking photos outdoors in a zoo. But I was already there so I gave it a try.

The Cinereous Vulture (Aegypius monachus) inhabits a huge aviary in Prague Zoo and this time it came really close to me.
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Reflection of the Yellow-billed Stork (Mycteria ibis) in a pond.
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The Marbled Duck (Marmaronetta angustirostris) was sitting hiden in dense reeds.
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Hornbill
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Barbary macaque (Macaca sylvanus) on the back of barbary sheep(Ammotragus lervia). It looks like the macaques in Prague Zoo are lazy and also very resourceful. Let’s ride!
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Zoo Plzen

Zoo Plzen is the second oldest zoo in the Czech Republic but this day this zoo is very modern, with almost no animals in cages. Most of the species have as big as possible exhibits, which look very natural. This zoo is also the biggest one in the Czech Republic as it is combined with botanical garden.

Here are some photos that I took in Zoo Plzen:

North Chinese leopard (Panthera pardus japonica) was lying under trees in shade so there wasn’t much light to get at least good photo.
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The black-backed jackal (Canis mesomelas). My the most favourite photo that I took that day.
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The pygmy hippopotamus (Hexaprotodon liberiensis).
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The Spotted Thick-knee (Burhinus capensis) also known as the Spotted Dikkop or Cape Thick-knee
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The Northern Carmine Bee-eater (Merops nubicus)
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Angry Bird… eh… sorry… buzzard. The Common Buzzard (Buteo buteo).
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The White-tailed Eagle (Haliaeetus albicilla), also called the Sea Eagle and White-tailed Sea-eagle.
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The Grey Crowned Crane (Balearica regulorum)
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Penguins in queue for lunch. The Humboldt Penguin (Spheniscus humboldti).
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