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Birds of western Siberia (1 Viewer)

Homo sibiricus

Well-known member
A special subspecies of Merlin lives in the mountains. There is one of the most dense breeding groups of the imperial eagle in the Ust-Kan steppe in middle Altai.
First photo - the same young Saker as in post above, second photo - one bird of breeding Merlin pair we have found on a shore of one of highland lakes of Altai last summer, third photo - the young steppe eagle over Saylgemski ridge. Fourth - the imperial eagle over north border of Altai mountins.
 

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Homo sibiricus

Well-known member
Great shots as usual, very envious of the Saker, a bird I'm yet to catch up with.

Thank you! Specially for you: the Saker above South-Chuysky ridge. Come to Altai or Sayan, here you can sometimes find this falcon.
 

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Homo sibiricus

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Last summer, my wife and I met a truly unique bird for Russia. Imagine that in the 21st century it was photographed in our country only once. Our observation was the second. And this bird is not so small that it can be overlooked. I'm talking about the Pallas's Fish Eagle. This unique migrant of the Northern Hemisphere nestings to the South of the Himalayas and flies to wintering to the North. That is, it wintering in the summer! This is the rarest of the largest birds of prey of Eurasia. This species is on the verge of extinction. We stopped on the bank of the mountain river Charysh on the northernmost border of the Altai Mountains. It was just a quarter of an hour stopping to give a rest to ourselves and the children. When we were ready to go further, we saw a large eagle flying over the river from South to North. A gray crow and a black kite appeared from nowhere and began to chase the eagle. He found an ascending stream above the river bank, climb quickly and overtake the pursuers. I imagine that from this height he perfectly saw the huge pre-Altai plain. And maybe even the valley of the Ob River and the chain of lakes along the pine forests.
Unfortunately, we could not identify the bird at that moment. We thought it was an imperial eagle. Only at home, our friend, a very famous expert on birds of prey, identified the eagle from our photographs.
 

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Homo sibiricus

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Thank you!
Summer is coming to Siberia. Many birds have start the breeding season. Yesterday we saw a nest of an Long Eared Owl with five youngs. Their mom is still warming them. Their dad looks like a sentinel sitting on a tree 6 meters from the nest.
And theirs bigger neighbors, the Ural Owls living in our nestboxes also have chiks. This one on the photo have a very small house that we made for common kestrels. We mounted this nestbox on a tree on April, 7 and on May, 8 we took this photo. I think that owls have a big problem with a free appartment in Siberia. Due to the lack of Temperate deciduous forests and, therefore, there are no no old big trees with hollows.
Also, falcons have start the breeding season too. It is the pair of peregrins that lived in Novosibirsk on the building in last season. And the pair that used Black Kite's nest on a tree in 2017. But the nest is disappeared in this (i think, last) year and the falcons was forced to make the clutch on a little cliff 50 meters from the old one.
This year in April we have mounted 57 nestboxes for Common Kestrels. It was late for a little, but we could not made it in March due to the melting of residues of snow. It make field works impossible. We are planning to make at least 200 nestng boxes this summer.
Ospreys fly through our region to the North in May and we have start to meets this bird on a migration.
 

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Homo sibiricus

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Rare migrants appeared this spring. On Sunday we met a flock of pink starlings. This is a very rare bird for the Novosibirsk province. The nearest nesting sites are located 500 km to the south in the Chuya steppe, in the middle of the Altai Mountains.
 

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PYRTLE

Old Berkshire Boy
Great that you're providing nest boxes for the owls and other species to use. Conservation even in the last areas of wilderness. Good luck.

P
 

rollingthunder

Well-known member
Thank you for the posts and keep them coming - it’s great to have information and pictures from this part of the World:t:

Laurie -
 

Homo sibiricus

Well-known member
Hi! Another summer is over. About a month we spent in the Altai and Sayan mountains. I already mentioned Chuya steppe. Here we were lucky to meet a family of Indian geese. Parents and three goslings rafted downstream and lingered on swampy lakes along the river. On the third day after we met them for the first time, they swam along the lake with a pair of loons. My friends say that Indian geese are a fairly common species in the south of Altai. But my wife and I first meet these birds only this year. An even more long-awaited find awaited us at the Saylyugem ridge. We met a flock of Altai snowcocks. My wife heard them sing on a rocky slope about 2,600 meters above sea level. She called me on the walkie-talkie. I was there only after almost an hour. All this time Nataly moved behind the flock. And took these photos. From time to time, some bird stopped, threw back its head and began to repeat “ko-ko-ko” with acceleration, and then began to howl loudly. Slowly, the birds moved diagonally up the slope. I climbed the slope and waited for the flock to pass me by. I had 16x binoculars, and the birds passed in front of me 10 meters away. They saw me, but did not show any concern. They are really huge, looking like giant, fantastically colored partridges. And they are surprisingly calm and confident.
Ulars (Altai snowcocks) are quite ordinary birds of the high mountains of Altai and endemic of the Altai-Sayan mountain country.
 

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