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BATV News | Catch up with all the adventures and birding news

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Issue: 44 6/9/2010
Paradise in Portugal!
Great Bustard!
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After our recent visit to Portugal, I'm surprised there aren't more US birders flocking to this European country for their vacations. The country is often overshadowed by its better known neighbor, Spain, but few birders are aware that many of the Spanish specialities can easily be found in Portugal. Birds like Great Bustards, Azure-winged Magpies, Great-spotted Cuckoos, Booted and Short-toed eagles, as well as many passerines and shorebirds.
Apart from the birds, Portugal also has fascinating landscapes, ecosystems, history, monuments, beaches, wine and food. It is guaranteed that a visit to Portugal will be interesting from many different aspects.
Portugal is steeped in culture 
Be sure to catch the Great Bustard Portugal show when it airs for the first time this week on Fox Sports Net. 

Join our Facebook page where you will get sneak previews of shows, updates on our travels and much more!  

Congratulations to the winner of our last quizz, Pamela Righter of Buffalo New York! And be sure to enter this week's quizz.
Stay tuned for another Birding Adventure!

Migrating Birds


Paradise in Portugal blends guided and non-guided birdwatching throughout southern Portugal with a centralised location in a sparsely populated region of unique beauty. Your stay in this friendly country is hosted at Quinta do Barranco da Estrada, a small family-run hotel in a stunning lakeside location. The essence of the Quinta is a small, intimate, holiday retreat for peace and relaxation. It boasts a blend of traditional hospitality, "International home-cooking" cuisine and a friendly atmosphere with excellent service.

Lake View
The view of the lake from the Paradise in Portugal

Set in a beautiful lakeside location in central Portugal, the Quinta is surrounded by unspoilt countryside with a wide variety of wildlife and rare birds in its gardens and surrounding countryside. The Quinta has an international reputation for good food, company and service, and its size, with a maximum of twenty guests, ensures that all guests feel welcome from the moment they arrive. Moreover, the Quinta is ideally suited to those guests whose numbers include couples of whom only one is a dedicated birder, as there are plenty of facilities for a relaxing holiday away from all the hustle and bustle of a normal destination.

Great Bustards

 Great Bustards in South Portugal
With nearly 1500 individuals thought to exist in Portugal, the Great Bustard (or Otis tarda) is the region's flagship species. Frank, the Quinta's resident birdwatching professional, uses his 20 years of experience in the region to help all keen birdwatchers track down this increasingly rare bird.

The Great Bustard is just one of the many species which can be seen in the unspoilt Alentejo region of Portugal.
For more information click on Paradise in Portugal or Birding in Portugal.

The Great Bustard, Otis tarda, is in the bustard family, the only member of the genus Otis. It breeds in southern and central Europe, where it is the largest species of bird, and across temperate Asia. European populations are mainly resident, but Asian birds move further south in winter.

The male of this huge bird is possibly the heaviest living flying animal, alongside the similarly sized Kori Bustard. An adult male typically is 90-110 cm (3.0-3.6 ft) long with a 2.1-2.5 m (6.9-8.2 ft) wingspan and usually weighs from 10 to 16 kg (22 to 35 lb).The heaviest known bird was about 21 kg (46 lb), although larger specimens have been reported but not verified. An adult male is brown above and white below, with a long grey neck and head. The breast and lower neck sides are chestnut. In the breeding season, the male has long white neck bristles. In flight, the long wings show large areas of white.

The female is 30% smaller (typically 80 cm in length and 1.8 m across the wings) and one-third the weight of the male, averaging 3.5-5 kg (7.7-11 lb). Perhaps because of this, there is a skewed sex ratio of about 1.5:1 female to male. The breast and neck of the female are buff. Both sexes are usually silent. Immature birds resemble the female.

This bird's habitat is open grassland, although it can be found on undisturbed cultivation. It has a stately slow walk, and tends to run when disturbed rather than fly. It is gregarious, especially in winter. This species is omnivorous, taking seeds, insects and other small creatures, including frogs and beetles.
Great Bustards are listed as Vulnerable by CITES and Portugal remains one of the best places to view these magnificent creatures.
Catch the quest for this rare bird this week on BATV!
Great Bustard
A male Great Bustard displaying

Mystery Bird


Correctly identify the mystery bird in the photo above and win an attachable Nikon lens cleaning cloth and a $10 gift voucher to  
 Email answers to and title your email "Quizz".
Clue: A juvenile of an American species!
The winner (first correct entry drawn) will be announced in next week's newsletter.
Congratulations to our last winner, Pamela Righter of Buffalo New York, who correctly identified our last mystery bird as a Savannah Hawk!  Pam won an attachable Nikon lens cleaning cloth and a $10 voucher for
We will be airing the following new shows and re-runs this week on Fox Sports Net. Our upcoming immediate schedule is as follows:
Week of June 10   Great Bustards - Portugal
Week of June 17   Ridgway's Hawk - Dominican Republic Re-Run
Week of June 24   Great Bustards - Portugal Re-Run
Week of July 1      Best of BATV - Re-Run
For more information on days, times and networks, please visit to learn more!!

Black Harrier

 Happy Birding,
The Birding Adventures Team
 PS -  Check out the awesome deal Nikon is offering. Click on the "Take it to the Edg" banner below.

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