Tuesday, December 24, 2019

Christmas Eve Walk

☀️22C ~ Wind ⇐ WNW3mph  Tuesday 24th December 2019 ~ Today was almost a carbon copy of last Christmas Eve with a walk and lunch along the La Cala de Mijas boardwalk. The boardwalk forms part of the Senda Litoral De Malaga (Malaga coastal path) and if its ever completed will run from Nerja to Manilva and span 163 km. The boardwalk hugs the coastline and has many bars and restaurant's along the way. It naturally provides good birding opportunities and so binoculars and camera are the order of the day.

Audouin's Gull ~ This one sporting rings which I'm investigating
Meditteranean Gull off the boardwalk
There were plenty of Gulls along the rocky outcrops and these included both Meditteranean and Audouin's Gulls, the latter one of my favourites. Among them just a couple of wader species with Sanderling and Turnstone. Northern Gannets were diving reasonably close in but the sun was quite harsh today and I never quite got to grips with my camera settings. At one stage a small group of Sandwich Terns suddenly appeared not far offshore, obviously attracted by a small shoal of fish but didn't linger long before moving on.

Monk Parakeet enjoying the shade
The many hotels and gardens along the route are worth checking and the local Monk Parakeets could be found sheltering within the palm trees, even at rest still as noisy as ever. In one particular garden, a Black Redstart and Stonechat made an appearance and for most of the walk, the Spotless Starlings could be heard mimicking every bird call under the sun.

Long-tailed Blue or Pea Blue ~ Lampides boeticus
A few butterflies on the wing today in the warm sunshine with Red Admiral, Painted Lady and the above Long-tailed Blue.

Spotless Starling ~ Great mimics 

Black Redstart ~ This one showing a particularly striking red tail probably due to the harsh sunlight!

Stonechat ~ Quite common here at any time of year