Enraptured by raptors on the Dalmatian coast

Just inland from Šibenik is the Sokolarski Centar for Falconry & Raptor Rescue. It’s in a small place called Dubrava, set in a woodland area with paths and buildings. This is a veterinary centre that rescues and rehabilitates wildlife, at the same time educating the public about birds of prey, and promoting the ancient art…

Bee-Eater in front of burrow

Birdwatching on Hvar: Do Bee-Eaters Eat Bees?

Birdwatchers on Hvar between May and September will encounter beautiful colourful bee-eaters. The European Bee-Eater (Merops apiaster) is a gorgeous bird which migrates between tropical Africa and southern Europe. Occasional pairs have tried to breed in Southern England but only five pairs in the last fifty years. On Hvar they can most often be heard…

Birdwatching on Hvar – Part 3, Bee Eaters

We wrote about swifts before and also about swallows and martins. But Hvar is the summer home of a whole set of other birds, many of them rare or non-existent in more northern climes. We just saw our first flock of Bee Eaters (Merops apiaster). This colourful bird winters in deepest Africa, but comes to warmer parts…

Rosmarinus Officinalis

Rosemary and lavender – Hvar’s essential oils

One of the delights of Hvar is the variety of aromatic plants that grow naturally here. The island is well-known for its lavender (lavanda), but for many centuries, rosemary (ružmarin) was more important to the island’s economy. Rosemary is actually a close relative of lavender, both belonging to the Lamiaceae (mint) family of plants. The…