Rare Birds Of Vrac Mt. (Serbia Montenegro)
Non-commercial site for nature preservation
Short-toed eagle Vrac Mt. photo taken by Milivoj Vuchanovich ©1999-2001
Vrac Mts., located in the region of Vojvodina (Northern part of FR Yugoslavia) is the place where multitude of rare bird species gather. In the book named 'The Birds of Vrac Mountains' from Javor Raajski, 116 bird species are covered, and out of these, as much as 83 species are having nests - nesting in this particular area.
Another passionate birdwatcher, whose name is Milivoj Vuchanovich, thoroughly tracks, examines and records all rare bird species present at the Vrac Mts. and the exclusive photos and texts here are given by his kind permission.
Vrac Mt. during winter - Photo by Milivoj Vuchanovich ©2001
During the last 4 years (1998-2001), there had been registered 3 brand new species; and 1 new nesting bird, which was until 1998 treated as a rare winter guest. Namely, these species are:
1- Short-toed eagle (Circætus Gallicus)
2- Rock Bunting (Emberisa Cia)
3- Honey Buzzard (Pernis Apivorus)
4- Ural Owl (Strix Uralensis)*
* the breed that had a status of rare winter visitor
These species belong to the group of rare birds. Besides, all of them except Honey Buzzard (Pernis Apivorus) are constructing nests nowhere else in the region of Vojvodina.
In addition to above mentioned species, there are other endemic ones found here, as far as region of Vojvodina is concerned, and those are:
- Accipiter brevipes
- Dendricopus leucotus
- Motocilla cinerea
The last registered nesting of Milvus Milvus was also on Vrac Mts. .Until the end of 1960's, in this region the Aquilla heliaca could also be found (in 2001 there is no data about its nesting in whole FR Yugoslavia). Aquilla pomarina is also nesting bird of Vrac Mts.
Taking all this in account, the conclusion is that Vrac Mts. is the region of high importance for birds, and it deserves much higher level of conservation and protection.
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SHORT-TOED EAGLE (Circætus Gallicus)
As of 1999, Short-toed eagle (Circætus Gallicus) is officially the new nesting-bird of Vrac Mountains, and the whole Vojvodina region. The pair that is nesting on the slopes of Vrac Mountains lives in this area most probably since 1997. Beside them, there is another record of this breed attempt nesting which originates from Deliblatska Pecara (about 40 km streight-line from Vrac Mountains).
The pair produced an egg, but after few weeks the nest was abandoned probably because of wind damage.
The pair of Short-toed eagles which is nesting in Vrac Mountains most probably belongs to the part of Romanian bird population because on the slopes of Karpati Mountains this breed is frequently met. The migration of this breed was most probably initiated by increased concetration of snakes and lizards, which are the basic food for this breed.
This pair has regularily been controlled since 1999, the dates of their coming and leaving are registered, as well as the whole cycle of nesting: from making of the nest to the appereance of baby-birds. Baby-birds are being marked with ornithologist rings.
Beside this adult pair, there were spotted some non-mature birds (immaturus) that can be seen on the terrains where adult birds are hunting. Those are probably young birds that were incubated here. The appereance of this young birds gives hope that there might be another pair of eagles in this region.
Below you can enjoy the pictures of young Short-toed eagle. The bird was pictured several times during growth and the photos are given chronologically.
Very young Short-toed eagle. Note white baby-feathers. Photo by Milivoj Vuchanovich ©
Note that first feathers are being formed.Photo by Milivoj Vuchanovich ©
The future awsome bird is now recognisible. Note ornithologist ring. Photo by Milivoj Vuchanovich ©
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URAL OWL (Strix Uralensis)
Ural owl (Strix Uralensis) is since 1998 the new nesting-bird of whole region of Vojvodina as well as the Vrac Mountains. The nest is located on the northern mountainside of Vrac Mountains (on the Mountain of Lisichija Glava), which is much steeper than southern mountainside. The pair of Ural Owls entered the nest of Chicken-hawk (Acipiter gentillis) constructed 15 meters above ground. The nest was found on 17th April 1998 when there was already one baby-owl about 15 days old in it. During the inspection of the nest, one of the parent-owls (probably female) was rather agressive and attacked the person that pursued the inspection (Milivoj Vuchanovich), inflicting injuries on head and neck .
Namely, Ural Owl was until 1998 treated as a rare winter guest of Vrac Mts. In Serbia, this bird can be found in the period of reproduction, but the formed nest with eggs or baby-owls has not yet been found.
Below you can see rare pictures of baby-owl.
Baby-Ural owl in the nest on Vrac Mountains. Photo taken by Milivoj Vuchanovich ©
Another photo of Baby-Ural owl, Vrac Mountains. Photo taken by Milivoj Vuchanovich ©
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ROCK BUNTING (Emberisa Cia)
...Is since 1999 the new nesting bird of Vrac Mountains and Vojvodina. This bird is a typical example of highmountain-birds living above 1000 m ASL. In Vojvodina it is met very rarely, namely in the migration period inside the lofts of another bird called Emberisa Citrinea.
The nest that was found is typical for this breed. It is located in the rupture inside earth, below big rock, on the southern slopes of Lisicja glava. In the nest there were found 4 eggs, 2-3 days old. During the second inspection in the nest there were 2 baby birds which had their first feather growing.
Taking in account the date when this nest was found, this was probably the second nesting of this pair of birds. Besides this, there is a great probability that there is another pair of this breed nearby.
The nest of Rock Bunting. Photo taken by Milivoj Vuchanovich ©2000
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HONEY BUZZARD (Pernis Apivorus)
Until 2001 it wasn't treated as nesting bird of Vrsac Mts. In Vojvodina this breed is rarely found nesting although in recent years the breed is in slight expansion. The appereance of Honey Buzzard in this mountain area was caused by increased concentration of buzzards and bees whom this breed is feeding with. At the beginning of June 2001 the half-destructed nest was found with one egg. After short exploration of nearby terrain around the tree, the other egg was found, which surprisingly wasn't cracked because of big pile of leaves on which the egg landed. The nest was reconstructed and photographed.
About 5 kilometres from this, after 2 weeks there was another nest found, although not fully constructed. On 13th September 2001 the young bird was spotted in flight over the hills. This fact leads us to conclusion that there may be 2 pairs of these birds.
Reconstructed nest of Honey Buzzard. Photo by Milivoj Vuchanovich ©2001
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Contact email: Milivoj Vuchanovich, Njegoseva 36, 26300 Vrsac, Yugoslavia
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