Friday, April 20, 2012

Black Forest Wildflowers

Yesterday I joined my friend Christoph to two sites in the central Black Forest where he had a contract to do some bird surveys for proposed construction projects. We passed through some truly classic Black Forest farm country with the huge farm houses that incorporate the barn and living quarters all in one. This quaint little house still had an operational water mill.

We passed through Alpirsbach, a touristy town full of Fachwerkhäuser – the typical wood frame construction seen here. This town also has a locally famous brewery, and we came away with several types of beer to try.

We also passed by what looked like Roman ruins.

In an area called Ehlenbogen we arrived at the first survey site by a tunnel.

Here we saw Goldcrest, tons of Coal Tits, a couple Eurasian Bullfinches, singing Blackcaps and a few other expected birds. I enjoyed all the early spring wildflowers:

Coltsfoot, Tussilago farfara

Common Bilberry, Vaccinium myrtillus

Cowslip, Primula veris

Wood Anemone, Anemone nemorosa

It's been quite cool in northern Europe these past few days, so I was surprised to see this butterfly, a Small Copper, Lycaena phlaeas.

On the way home we checked out a potential raptor migration viewpoint with a lovely view to the NW over the upper Prech valley (Oberprechtal).

Today was a little less exciting: a late breakfast, some errands downtown (including a quick stop by the yarn shop!), finishing up post-tour materials on my computer, doing some knitting, and then changing over from Christoph and Friederiecke's to Uwe's house nearby, where our friend Stefan just happened to be making a last minute work trip from Bonn.

Friederieck's homemade pizza

The yard behind the house where Christoph and Friederiecke live.

Stefan, Uwe, and I.

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