Sunday, May 04, 2014

Cap Blanc

I took an early start before Dee and Dave were up and about near the Torrent de Albufereta and on arrival inadvertently flushed several Cattle Egret feeding in the shallows. My target this morning was to try and get a photographic record of one of the several Stone Curlew that have been constantly flitting around the area.

Stone Curlew - Finally a photographic record! Canon SX50
Thankfully my thoughts on where they were roosting paid off. Around Can Cullerassa no real additions to any of the species mentioned in my previous entries but another Eleanora's Falcon overhead, Marsh Harrier and a huge fall of House Martin overnight, with hundreds feeding over the plains and pools.

After dropping Dave at Palma airport for his flight back to Malaga Dee and I  detoured to Cap Blanc, a short drive from the airport. 'Marina' is the Majorcan name for the flat low-lying areas occupied by a mix of pine woods, wild olive, heather maquis and un-vegetated land. Cap Blanc is possibly the finest example there is and captures the essence of this Islands ecosystem. The cliffs overlooking the sea are well conserved and offers a great sea watching area from the lighthouse.

Dee's superb record shot of Tawny Pipit using the Canon SX50
As you reach the lighthouse you can hop the low wall and explore the area in more detail. Within minutes of our arrival Balearic Warbler could be heard and was seen briefly, in fact three brief sightings during our stay. This is also an excellent area for Tawny Pipit and Thekla Lark, both recorded during our visit. As we moved west along the cliff top an Osprey drifted over and shortly after a Peregrine made an appearance.

Blue Rock Thrush from Dee on the Canon SX50 - Does anyone want my Canon 7D!!
Wheatear, Stonechat and Sardinian Warbler are numerous and there's always a chance of Blue Rock Thrush, which duly obliged! Other notables during our visit included: Red-legged Partridge, Turtle Dove, Nightingale, Spotted Flycatcher, Firecrest, Serin and Linnet. The sea was particularly quiet with no passage birds during a brief sea-watch, probable due to the time of visit (midday) but Shag, Audouins Gull and Yellow-legged Gull were noted.

Booted Eagle in the afternoon sun!
Finally, as we were leaving a Booted Eagle flew through offering a chance to fire up my 7D and ending a really enjoyable visit.