Friday, November 29, 2013
Thursday, October 31, 2013
Wednesday, October 23, 2013
Silica Ice Cave, Slovak Karst, Slovakia (Silica-Eishöhle, Slowakischer Karst, Slowakei) (Szilicei-jégbarlang, Szlovák-karszt, Szlovákia) 10.2013.
During our trip to the Slovak Karst, we visited the Silica Ice Cave (that got its name from the nearby village, not from the chemical compound) that lies at 503 m a.s.l., making it the lowest-lying ice cave in the temperate climate zone. We did not enter the protected cave, but made some photos outside. Location: Silica. Date: 23.10.2013.
Domica Cave, Slovak Karst, Slovakia (Domica-Höhle, Slowakischer Karst, Slowakei) (Domica-barlang, Szlovák-karszt, Szlovákia) 10.2013.
We took a short trip to the Slovak Karst National Park (a world heritage site together with the Aggtelek Karst) this autumn with a permit to take photos of the local cave fauna. We managed to find many interesting arthropods in two segments of the Domica cave - a dry one open for tourists, the another closed, with a brook. Location: Domica Cave. Date: 23.10.2013.
Sunday, October 13, 2013
Létrási Cave, Bükk Mountains, Hungary (Létrási-Höhle, Bükk-Gebirge, Ungarn) (Létrási-vizesbarlang, Bükk-hegység, Magyarország)
Saturday, August 31, 2013
Tuesday, August 20, 2013
In August 2013 we visited the Slovakian part of the beautiful High Tatras which is one of the most famous national parks of Slovakia. The weather was rather dry and the vegetation was already somewhat autumnal. We also visited the botanic garden at Tatranská Lomnica to see some of the botanic highlights of the Tatras - many of these are endemics. Location: High Tatras National Park. Date: 17-20.08.2013.
Monday, August 19, 2013
Friday, August 16, 2013
Last week we traveled to the small village of Kács in the southern part of the Bükk Mountains. This village is known for its historical buildings and small lukewarm thermal springs. These springs and the Kács Brook are the only remaining habitats of the Black Nerite Snail (Theodoxus prevostianus) in Hungary. This primitive snail was once a bit more common in the Carpathian Basin, however, nowadays it is only found in 3 other locations (in Austria and Slovenia) and nowhere else on the planet.
Wednesday, July 31, 2013
Thursday, July 18, 2013
Last week I visited the municipality of Tarcal in the UNESCO area of the Tokaj Wine Region in North-Hungary. The area is famous for its vineries, the protected wetland habitats along the Bodrog and Tisia rivers, and the beautiful mountains. The protected areas are part of the Tokaj-Bodrogzug Landscape Protection Area and partly also the Ramsar Areas.
Tuesday, June 25, 2013
Friday, June 14, 2013
Last weekend I traveled to Tokaj in North-East Hungary to the confluence of the rivers Bodrog and Tisza to photograph a famous natural phenomenon, the swarming of Tisza Mayflies (Palingenia longicauda) also called the 'Blooming of the Tisza'. Every year, the swarming period lasts only 2 or 3 days and each swarming is only some hours long in the late afternoon. But near Tokaj, there are two swarmings each year, as the shallower Bodrog river becomes warm sooner than the Tisza, resulting in an earlier swarm of its mayfly population. I took photos during the second day of the swarming at the Bodrog.
Friday, May 3, 2013
Gennargentu Mountains, Sardinia (Gennargentu-Gebirge, Sardinien) (Gennargentu-hegység, Szardínia) 05.2013.
The last place we visited on Sardinia was Gola di su Gorroppu, one of the largest canyons in Europe. It is located in the Gennargentu Mountains that also constitute a national park (Parco Nazionale del Golfo di Orosei e del Gennargentu). The worlds rarest plant, the Nuragica Columbine is only known from this place, where it grows on the cliffs. Location: Gola di su Gorroppu. Date: 03.05.2013.
Thursday, May 2, 2013
We traveled to the Baratz Lake and the nearby coastal area called Porto Ferro in the Sassari Province of Sardinia. The area had such a high diversity of landscapes, plants and animals that we spent the whole day here. The coast of Porto Ferro is situated at the northern edge of the Capo Caccia/ Isola Piana Marine Protected Area and its 2 km long beach is guarded by 3 towers built in the 17th century. Location: Porto Ferro. Date: 02.05.2013.
We traveled to the Baratz Lake and the nearby coastal area called Porto Ferro in the Sassari Province of Sardinia. The area had such a high diversity of landscapes, plants and animals that we spent the whole day here. First, we hiked around the lake and in the coastal pine forest. Location: Lago Baratz. Date: 02.05.2013.
Wednesday, May 1, 2013
The islands of the Maddalena Archipelago are located north-east of Sardinia and are only accessible by boat. There are some pleasant, small villages here but most of the archipelago is in the territory of a national park named Parco nazionale dell'Arcipelago di La Maddalena. Crystal clear waters, beaches with pink sand, granite coastlines formed by the wind and the sea, small forests and interesting flora and fauna make this place fabulous. Place: Caprera Island. Date: 01.05.2013.
Tuesday, April 30, 2013
Province of Oristano, Sardinia (Provinz Oristano, Sardinien) (Oristano provincia, Szardínia) 04.2013.
Monday, April 29, 2013
Sunday, April 28, 2013
In the end of April, we travelled to the beautiful island of Sardinia with a group of arachnology-enthusiasts. We stayed in the province of Sassari in the North-West of the island on the kind invitation of Salvatore Canu and visited numerous places and many different habitats. On the first day, we took a short trip to Monte Forte. The whole Sardinian trip report of the german Spinnen-Forum can be found here.
Wednesday, March 27, 2013
Punta de Teno is the westernmost corner of Tenerife, a very intersting place that is difficult to access. It is separated from other parts of the island by the Teno Mountains and the colossal cliffs named Acantilados de Los Gigantes. Some extremely rare species found refuge at these places, namely the Tenerife Speckled Lizard (that was only described in 1996) and the plants Limonium fruticans and Teline salsoloides, extinct from other parts of the island. Location: Punta de Teno. Date: 27.03.2013.
Monday, March 25, 2013
Majona and the South, La Gomera (Majona und der Süden, La Gomera) (Majona és a déli részek, La Gomera) 03.2013.
On our way back from La Gomera, we shortly visited the southern part of the island and the Majona Nature Park. This island is only 24 km wide but it has an unusually high variety of landscapes and also many protected areas. Location: La Gomera. Date: 25.03.2013.
Garajonay National Park, La Gomera (Nationalpark Garajonay, La Gomera) (Garajonay Nemzeti Park, La Gomera) 03.2013.
Sunday, March 24, 2013
Saturday, March 23, 2013
Tenerife, the 'Island of Eternal Spring' has been inhabited since at least a thousand years and many exotic plant species have been brought here from all around the world. These are mostly found in the cities, where they regularly escape from the gardens, but many species also threaten the indigenous flora of the beautiful natural habitats of the island. Of course, there are many non-native animals as well.
We traveled to Vilaflor, the highest village on Tenerife, to take a hike to the Moon Landscape, the Paisaje Lunar. This place got its name from formations of tuff, made of many layers of volcanic ash pressed together. Erosion has a constant effect on the tuff, but there where stones blocked the rain, it was protected, resulting in the formation of tall pillars - a fascinating sight. Location: Paisaje Lunar. Date: 23.03.2013.
Tenerife is the largest of the 7 main Canary Islands, characterised by its main volcano, the Teide (3718 m). With my wife, we spent almost 2 weeks here and on the island of La Gomera in March. This time of the year is good to catch many of the islands endemic plants in flowering period. The plant and animal life on the Canary Islands are incredible, a very high proportion of the species are endemics and and even the types of plant communities are very special, found nowhere else on Earth but on other Macaronesian Islands. Tenerife, due the presence of the Teide, has an astonishing vertical zonation and many of its areas are protected. First, I show photos of the biggest valley, the Orotava Valley, which faces the Atlantic Ocean on the north of the island.
The Caldera of Teide, Tenerife (Caldera des Teide, Teneriffa) (A Teide kalderája, Tenerife) 03.2013.
Thursday, March 21, 2013
The Anaga Peninsula is the gratest place on Tenerife to get away from mass tourism and to find natural laurisilva forests which once covered much of the island. The highest point of the Anaga Mountain Range (Macizo de Anaga) is just over 1000 m, which doesn't count as high on the island, but the peaks are really steep and the valleys are small. This has caused the peninsula to be sparsely populated and to retain its natural beauty.
Wednesday, March 20, 2013
Corona Forestal and Las Lagunetas, Tenerife (Corona Forestal und Las Lagunetas, Teneriffa) (Corona Forestal és Las Lagunetas, Tenerife) 03.2013.
The vulcano of Teide undoubtedly dominates the landscape of Tenerife. The highest point of the island is surrounded by a forest belt that is lush and green on the northern side and arid on the southern. The area is a nature park called Parque natural de la Corona Forestal. An adjacent mountain range that stretches towards northeast is the Pedro Gil with protected forests such as the dense Las Lagunetas that is always covered by clouds. Location: Corona Forestal and Las Lagunetas. Date: 20.03.2013.
Aguamansa, Corona Forestal, Tenerife (Aguamansa, Corona Forestal, Teneriffa) (Aguamansa, Corona Forestal, Tenerife) 03.2013.
Aguamansa is one of the best places in for hiking in the northern part of Tenerife. The area is part of the Forest Crown of the Teide (Parque natural de la Corona Forestal) and lies between 1000-1200 m above sea level. The forests here often get covered by the thick clouds of the Atlantic. The vegetation is dominated by Canary Pine and heath. Location: Aguamansa. Date: 20.03.2013.
Tuesday, March 19, 2013
The Badland (Malpaís) of Güímar is a special nature reserve on the coast of Tenerife, near the town of Güímar. It is known from its incredible landscape with vulcanic cones, basaltic lava flows and a vegetation extremely adapted for dry and hot conditions - a one-of-a-kind place indeed. Location: Reserva natural especial del Malpaís de Güímar. Date: 19.03.2013.
Monday, March 18, 2013
The Teno Massif or Teno Mountains form the westernmost part of Tenerife. The mountains here are often covered in clouds and they are sparsely populated. The local vegetation is still quite natural but there are many introduced species here also. We traveled through the mountains and stopped at Masca, a tiny village that was not accessible on road until the 1960's. Location: Teno Alto. Date: 18.03.2013.
Saturday, March 9, 2013
Caving in Bükk mountains, Hungary (Höhlenklettern im Bükk-Gebirge, Ungarn) (Barlangászás a Bükk-hegységben, Magyarország) 03.2013.
We visited a cave in the Bükk National Park with a guided tour. Many karst caves are known in the Bükk mountains and some of them are open to tourists. The one we visited is about 300 metres long and it has an interesting arthropod fauna.
Friday, March 8, 2013
Today, we traveled to the southwestern part of the Nyírség, a region of the Great Hungarian Plain. The area we visited was once covered with sandy grasslands and patches of lowland oak forest, nowadays it is partly used by the agriculture, partly covered with locust tree forests. A relict of the original vegetation, the Spring Meadow Saffron has still survived in some areas - now it is strictly protected and its habitats are managed by the Hajdúság Landscape Protection Area.