Tag Archives: flora and fauna

Early June in the park

2 Jun

Sweetness in the air
Tantalizing our senses
The linden blossoms

For more on linden trees in Vienna.

An artist who adds happiness to life

6 Dec


Welcome to the world of Rosemarie Benedikt, an Austrian artist born in Baden bei Wien in 1939, and still active. I have adored her work for years and last year was even lucky enough to be able to buy one of her coatis as a present for the friend who told me the anteater (Ameisenbär or ant-bear) joke. Imagine then my pleasure at opening my Saturday Kurier  this gray, damp morning in Vienna and finding an article about Benedikt and her work, accompanied by lots of photos. That helped a lot!

The Zoo in Vienna

3 May

The zoo at Schönbrunn is the oldest in Europe and has won prizes for the quality of its animal care. Evidence of this is the high rate of reproduction among the animals. Here they are celebrating the cheetah cubs born on April 16th.:-)zoo_cheetah cubs_2014


Early spring in Vienna

9 Mar

Beautiful early spring weather here–sun, gentle blue sky, cool temperatures and hardly any wind. Mylo and I had a lovely walk before breakfast.


More wildlife in the city

31 Jan

Mylo and I saw a fox in the park yesterday evening on our last walk of the day, practically downtown. This city never fails to amaze me.


5 Jun

It strikes me as one of the best ideas of the Office of Parks (and they have a lot of good ideas)–planting lavender upstairs at Schottentor, what I call the windiest corner in Vienna. Not only does it look nice, it smells wonderful in the wind that constantly blows off the slopes of Kahlenberg down Währinger Straße into Vienna.

Lavender at Schottentor

Lavender at Schottentor


Wildlife in Vienna

30 May

That’s “wildlife” consciously written as one word, not “wild life”. (Some people would say there isn’t much of the latter in Vienna–however much there is of the former–although all I can say is that there is a lot more going on than there used to be!)

The Kurier (daily newspaper in Vienna) has a magazine on Saturdays and in that magazine last week they had an article about wildlife in Vienna, accompanied by beautiful photos. The article starts with someone in the 13th district telling about a fox–dubbed Adam–who visits his garden. It goes on to tell about a project “Wiener Wildnis” (www.wiener wildnis.at) that records and protects that wildlife.

Among the other animals mentioned, and pictured, were: stag beetles, ground squirrels (related, visibly, to groundhogs), black-bellied hamsters, seagulls (not bad for a landlocked country!), swans, mallard ducks, grey herons, rabbits, agile frogs (that “agile” is part of the name and the genus is part of the “true frog” family :-)), cormorants, bats, common kestrels, hedgehogs, badgers and beavers.

I was most surprised by the hamsters (I always think of them as pets, only), the badgers, the beavers, and the grey herons. I’ve encountered deer, boar, foxes, squirrels (of course), ducks and so on in the Vienna Woods and sometimes even in the city parks.

The most delightful encounter I had with one of these animals was with a hedgehog. I was at a Heuriger (wine tavern / garden) in Neustift am Walde, felt something run over my foot, looked under the table and almost melted when I saw the most beautiful little hedgehog scuttling away. It made me think of the Beatrix Potter books I grew up on.

Grateful thanks go to Wikipedia for the English names of the animals. My system? I look up the German names in the German-language Wikipedia, get the Latin name, copy that into the English-language Wikipedia and voilá! Then I know that a Turmfalke (Falco tinnunculus), which left to my own devices I probably would have translated as a “tower falcon”, is a Common or Old World Kestrel. 🙂

Spring comes to Vienna?

8 Apr

Like many places, winter has been longer and snowier here this year than other years, but finally there are some really encouraging signs that early spring has arrived. Below forsythia in one of Vienna’s parks. (Never mind that we would normally see this the end of February or so!)


The communal gardens

23 Mar

It’s still cold in Vienna, but there are definite signs of spring.


Seen today in Nussdorf

3 Mar

Just a week after our big snowstorm …