The guests of feeding-site near Rakitna village.
More and more wild animals are being attracted to the feeding site in Kresna Gorge, as some are eating the meat from the carcass, others prefer the fly‘s larves living in the old carcass, for many species the interest comes from the dung beetles or some large insects collecting the intestines‘ waste.
Meanwhile vultures are really suffering from finding available food, because of the declining number of the extensively bred livestock and wild ungulates. Most of the carcass is being dug and if it is openly set up there is a great chance for becoming an substrate for illegal poisoning.
For many of these species the only chance to survive is to be provided with available carcass, therefore for them the feeding sites are of great importance. Not only the local wildlife get benefits of the feeding sites but also the migratory birds have chance to step safely.
All the underlisted species have been visited our feeding site in the last year. It is really interesting for us to observe their behaviour.
Rock Partridge (Alectoris graeca) – It enjoys the fly‘s larves and could be often heard to sing from the nearby meadows. The two fighting males are shot just next to the feeding site. Usually they wing secretively with short flights to jump the fence looking carefully out for predators.
Griffon Vulture (Gyps fulvus)- Very whimsical birds, not always like the place we set up the carcass, but we have learned where their favourite places are.
Egyptian Vulture (Neophron percnopterus)- The only bird that doesn‘t mind the ravens‘ presence, because of its flexible flying and large size.
Golden Eagle (Aquila chrysaetos) - It is the strongest bird in the region, although the ravens bother it when around. More often it alights on the feeding site in winter when there isn‘t much available food.
Black Kite (Milvus migrans)- Rare visitor but a huge carcass fan.
Common Buzzard (Buteo buteo) - They are always around but eat on the feeding site only in winter.
Common Kestrel (Falco tinnunculus) - A big fan of the large insects and particularly of dung beetles.
Hoopoe (Upupa epops) - In spring 1-2 pairs have fed their chicks with the fly‘s larves from the feeding site.
Great Tit (Parus major) - It prefers the meet carcass in winter, but in other seasons dietary habits change and it hunts small insects around.
Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus)
Red-backed Shrike (Lanius collurio) -
Woodchat Shrike (Lanius senator)
Raven (Corvus corax)- Represented by the greatest number on the feeding site and thus attacking each bird but the Golden Eagle that wants to eat from the carcass too. Ususally ravens are afraid from the Golden Eagle therefore when it is around they fly out from the feeding site. A huge number of ravens is observed during the autumn and winter period. In that time they eat more than they need and store and transport some carcass in the beaks and the throats. After that they bury it in the area around the feeding site and make it attractive for carnivore mammals, which follow the smell.
Hooded Crow (Corvus cornix) -Ravens rarely allow the crows to get closer the feeding site.
Common Starling (Sturnus vulgaris) - Usually there are many of them on the feeding site digging out and eating the fly‘s larves, which the starlings themselves have burried before in the soil. Sometimes they taste the meat too. In winter they are really many in contrast to other seasons.
Eurasian Sparrowhawk (Accipiter nisus) - They are here to eat… the small birds came to feed from the meat or the larves.
Northern Goshawk (Accipiter gentilis)
Levant Sparrowhawk (Accipiter brevipes)
Eleonora’s Falcon (Falco eleonorae) - They are frequent visitors coming from south to eat in summer. More often they hunt small insects form the feeding site.
European Bee-eater (Merops apiaster)
Red-rumped Swallow (Cecropis daurica)
Barn Swallow (Hirundo rustica)
House Martin (Pelichon urbicum)