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Wednesday, May 16, 2018

πŸ‡ͺπŸ‡Έ NE SPAIN 2018 ~ Pyrenees Day 4

πŸ‡ͺπŸ‡Έ☀️24C Wednesday 16th May 2018 ~A short and local morning walk before breakfast, mainly to listen to the wonderful Pyrenean dawn chorus: Nightingale, Cuckoo, Golden Oriole, Hoopoe, Bonelli's Warbler, Blackbird, Robin, Orphean Warbler, Great Tit but no Turtle Dove today! The find of the walk was an obliging Red-backed Shrike, which posed very briefly for a quick photo, not had one of these for a while and sadly a know declining species for the Pyrenees.

This morning Red-backed Shrike
Breakfast on the terrace was nicely interrupted once more by the regular morning passage of raptors: Griffon Vulture, Egyptian Vulture, Red Kite, Booted Eagle, Honey Buzzard and Sparrowhawk today, you simply can't be anything but in awe of this place!

The medieval town of Alquezar
Today Dazza and I celebrated our wedding anniversary and after breakfast headed for lunch at the medieval town of Alquezar, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Staying at reasonably lower levels (2500ft) for a change the weather was spectacular with clear skies and a comfortable 24C

Absolutely stunning El Grado
Naturally, on route to Alquezar, we stopped on many occasions including at the above stunning embalse (reservoir) El Grado, a huge reservoir fed by the Rio Cinca. Along the rock face Red-billed Chough and Crag Martin and over the tops Alpine Swift, screaming Common Swift and Griffon Vulture.

Clouded Yellow
We took a walk along the waterside meadows where a number of butterflies were on the wing and these included Common Blue, Scarce Swallowtail, European Swallowtail, Clouded Yellow and a few other species I'm still searching for ID on, forgot my book!

After lunch, we spent the remainder of the day enjoying the scenery and checking out various gorges and ravines. Some of the resulting observations below.

Alpine Swift 

Griffon Vulture

Egyptian Vulture

Bee-eater