Wednesday, September 27, 2017

📖 Diary Update #57🇪🇸

🇪🇸 Wednesday 27th September 2017 ~ Arrived back from another excellent trip to Spain yesterday evening after spending six days at my buddy's villa in Mijas.

Guadalhorce Nature Reserve
After Friday's visit to Tarifa, I decided not to take my usual drive out to Fuente de Piedra (lack of water on site) and instead spend the dawn mornings at the Rio Guadalhorce Nature Reserve, this along with an afternoon excursion into the mountains just north of Malaga on Monday. Guadalhorce is just a short drive from the villa and is one of my favourite sites in Andalusia. Gravel and sand extraction have created several large artificial ponds and scrubland. Coupled with the fact that the Guadalhorce river estuary is on one of the main Mediterranean-crossing routes between Europe and Africa. You can never be quiet sure what you are going to see during each visit.

Bluethroat ~ Often I find them in the wet ditches close to the reeds!
At this time of year, it's also a great place to find Bluethroat and I managed several sightings during my morning visits. On Saturday morning a Purple Swamphen was teasing me with brief views on several occasions, skulking in and out of the reeds in a newly formed scrape.

The energetic Zitting Cisticola (Fantail Warbler) 
However, I was distracted when a Zitting Cisticola (Fantail Warbler) suddenly appeared, almost within touching distance. These birds just never seem to stop, constantly 'zitting' overhead, so you can imagine my delight at getting a decent image of one!


Booted Eagle in the post-dawn light!
At least one Booted Eagle appears to roost overnight as each morning I find him perched in the same tree across from the river. An Osprey has been present on site too over the period and as you'd expect at this time of year, there's a constant flow of species passing through Bee-eater, Red-rumped Swallow, Barn Swallow, House Martin, Common Swift, the odd Pallid Swift and a few Honey Buzzard.

Black-necked Grebe from the del Rio Viejo Hide!

The pools always offer a good selection of waterfowl with Black-necked Grebe, Red-crested Pochard and White-headed Duck recorded during my visits, a single Ferruginous Duck was also present briefly on Sunday morning.

Greater Flamingo
Below I've compiled a full list of species seen during yet another excellent visit #BirdingSpain, along with a few more images to round things off.

Species List...

Shelduck, Mallard, Gadwall, Pintail, Shoveler, Pochard, Red-crested Pochard, Ferruginous Duck, White-headed Duck, Red-legged Partridge, Black-necked Grebe, Little Grebe, Gannet, Cormorant, Little Bittern, Night Heron, Cattle Egret, Little Egret, Great Egret, Grey Heron, White Stork, Black Stork, Glossy Ibis, Spoonbill, Flamingo, Griffon Vulture, Osprey, Short-toed Eagle, Booted Eagle, Black Kite, Marsh Harrier, Hen Harrier, Montagu's Harrier, Common Buzzard, Honey Buzzard, Sparrowhawk, Black-winged Kite, Kestrel, Lesser Kestrel, Peregrine, Water Rail, Moorhen, Coot, Purple Swamphen, Black-winged Stilt, Collared Pratincole, Little-ringed Plover, Ringed Plover, Kentish Plover, Grey Plover, Knot, Sanderling, Dunlin, Curlew Sandpiper, Little Stint, Wood Sandpiper, Green Sandpiper, Common Sandpiper, Redshank, Greenshank, Snipe, Ruff, Black-headed Gull, Mediterranean Gull, Yellow-legged Gull, Audouin's Gull, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Sandwich Tern, Rock Dove, Wood Pigeon, Collared Dove, Eagle Owl (h), Tawny Owl (h), Little Owl, Swift, Pallid Swift, Alpine Swift, Hoopoe, Kingfisher, Bee-eater, Green Woodpecker, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Skylark, Woodlark, Crested Lark, House Martin, Barn Swallow, Red-rumped Swallow, White Wagtail, Yellow Wagtail, Robin, Bluethroat, Redstart, Wheatear, Stonechat, Blackbird, Sardinian Warbler, Zitting Cisticola, Cetti's Warbler, Reed Warbler, Great Reed Warbler, Melodious Warbler, Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff, Firecrest, Wren, Pied Flycatcher, Spotted Flycatcher, Great Tit, Blue Tit, Coal Tit, Crested Tit, Long-tailed Tit,Nuthatch, Short-toed Treecreeper, Woodchat Shrike, Jay, Jackdaw, Raven, Spotless Starling, House Sparrow, Chaffinch, Linnet, Greenfinch, Goldfinch, Serin, Common Crossbill, Rock Bunting, Corn Bunting

Black-winged Stilt

Crimson Speckled Moth ~ On the beach at Guadalhorce

Juvenile Greater Flamingo