Oasi Stagni di Focognano

Yesterday my computer decided it needed a rest and refused even to boot…unfortunately Stefano couldn’t fix it until today…which reminds me how lucky I am to be married to a computer genius…oh, and speaking of being married to a genius (not just in the field of computers, by the way) and whatnot, yesterday was our 10th wedding anniversary. WOW! 10 years…already…

I have to say, though, that we were so tired last night that we didn’t do anything much out of the ordinary…but since cimg_0108heesecake is one of Stefano’s favourite sweets, day before yesterday I prepared a scrumptious New York style cheesecake, and last night we brought pizzas home for dinner (I usually make my own pizza with herbs…but not on my anniversary!).

Then, this morning, while my computer was mulling things over (Stefano launched a “get-your-act-together-or-else!” program that needed to run for hours), we went to a WWF oasis right outside of Florence, in the municipality of Campi Bisenzio: Oasi Stagni di Focognano. It’s a swampy area that hosts quite a variety of migrating bird species at different times of the year. Who would have thought…so close to Florence…! See: http://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oasi_di_Focognano (in Italian)img_0059

We were quite lucky this morning. We saw and took photos of white herons, black-winged stilts (in Italian, they have a nobler name: cavalieri d’Italia, or Italian knights), grey herons (aironi cenerino), common coots (folaghe) and great crested grebes (svassi). We actually spotted more birds, but these are the main ones.

Apparently, though, the best time of year to visit the oasis is in the autumn and the early spring. When bimg_0140irds are migrating, of course. Last fall we were told that a few storks landed in the main lake, and as late as last week a kingfisher (martin pescatore) was spotted. Too bad we missed it! So this morning Stefano and I registered at the oasis as “photographers,” which means that next time we won’t need to be accompanied by a guide but can go off on our own and stay as long as we want. Excellent.

These are some of the photos I took. Stefano’s photos are much better (he has a BIG camera with a super-long lens), but he is still looking through them, and I didn’t want to wait…oops, it’s late, time for dinner…and, uhm, for some more cheesecake! Ciao!


  1. Happy Anniversary Margaret,
    Next week we are off to Correze (neighbouring region to better known Dordogne) which is great for birdwatching – eagles in particular.
    Take care

  2. Nice picture of the Stilt – I haven’t photographed one of those – they are very rare here. I can show you a Kingfisher though!
    Happy anniversary.

  3. Happy Aniversay to you both

    I think your photos are great, stafano’s must be fantastic. It looks beauitful and peaceful there.


  4. Happy Anniversary Margaret and Stefano! Ours is May 9 (39th for us). We are devoted birders, and I loved your photos! Must be a lovely place!

  5. Oh thank you for the precious bird photos…
    and Congratulations and best wishes for your anniversary.
    Blessings for the year to come.

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