Southern Dordogne

We're having a break in the Dordogne region of France staying with our good friends Carmel and Tony Ashe. The weather hasn't been too good for the first few days but today the sun is out and the temperature is rising.

At Les Frenes we've had a relaxing time but managed to see one or two good birds visiting the garden and nearby fields. Black Redstarts are common place in the villages and around farm buildings. At least three Golden Orioles are singing in the vicinity and we've had spectacular views of one hovering over the field before plunging into the grass to catch its prey.

One surprising bird was Hen Harrier over the field - two males and a female yesterday as the farmer had just cut it. Buzzard, Kestrel and Hobby have all put in an appearance.

A little further down the road, Melodious Warblers, Nightingales and Zitting Cisticolas have been singing and today we came across a Red-backed Shrike. The Hoopoe has been taunting us however, calling nearby but never putting in an appearance.

Today I picked up a hire car to do some of the touristy stuff. Beynac was spectacular and the experience was augmented by a Honey Buzzard circling up with Black Kites and Buzzards as well as several Crag Martins.

Some more Chateaux and vinyards to visit over the next few days before we get back to England on Saturday.

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