I went birding a few times around Bourron-Marlotte (population 3,000) along rue Renoult, where we stayed at a friend’s house; it’s about 90 minutes by car south of Paris. The neighbourhood is very good for birding since it borders the Forest of Fontainebleau, and many yards are well landscaped with mature trees and thick bushes.
A map of the area where we stayed,
It rained every time I went birding in Bourron-Marlotte, so many of my photos have water spots or smudges on them, and of course the sky is overcast,
I saw two Crested Tits while in France. They’re very pretty little birds, but the ones I saw both stayed high up in the trees, so my photos don’t do them justice,
In the forest, many fallen logs were covered in moss and fungi,
Chaffinches were all over the forest floor looking for seeds,
Down the road from our friend’s house is a thickly treed yard where I saw many good species. This bird is a Firecrest; it was very quick and difficult to see as it flitted about in the bushes,
Woodpeckers were very common in the woods as there are many mature trees. This is a Great Spotted Woodpecker,
Common Blackbirds are very common around the countryside in France. Although the species name is “blackbird”, this species is in the thrush family and closely related to the American Robin.
Adult blackbirds have an orange-yellow bill while first winter birds have an all-dark bill,
Great Tits were one of the most common species I saw in the village,
While Eurasian Nuthatches look very similar to the Red-brested Nuthatches here at home, they sound very different,
Blue Tits get their name from the blue cap on their head,
This woodpecker is a Middle Spotted Woodpecker, which is distinguished from the Lesser Spotted Woodpecker by the amount of white on the back,
There are two species of treecreepers you can see in France. The one below is a Short-toed Treecreeper which can be identified by white spotting on the wing tips and a long bill, but the songs are probably the best way differentiate the two species.
A Short-toed Treecreeper scaling up a tree,
Along with birds, I also saw some mammals in France including this Red Squirrel; other mammals I saw included Wild Boar, Red Fox, and lots Roe Deer,
Stay tuned for more posts about birding in France and Germany!