🇪🇸 Monday 28th November 2022 🌤 20C ~ Wind NW @ 8MPH ~ With Dazza now on her holidays for the next week we decided to drive to Cadiz for an overnight stay, taking in the Cazalla Bird Observatory at Tarifa and La Janda on our way through.
|Griffon Vulture flies low over the observatory at Cazalla.|
As you would expect the bird observatory was relatively quiet with most of the species you'd normally see here migrating across to Africa in the autumn now gone. However, there appeared to be quite an ongoing passage of Griffon Vultures even this late in the year and we counted around forty birds during a brief stop. Indeed, by the time we reached the turn-off to La Janda about 40 minutes later, we'd managed well over 100 birds.
|Black-winged Kite ~ One of three seen today around La Janda|
We took our normal anti-clockwise route around La Janda beginning opposite the turnoff to Zahara on the N340 and spent a few hours stopping/starting along the tracks. Despite a lot of species absent due to the time of year, there's still plenty to see and a full list of our sightings for today can be found HERE
|Some large gatherings of Spoonbill at La Janda ~ This one separated briefly from one group.|
In the winter months, it's a great place to see Cranes with 100s overwintering and along with the Cranes, White Storks, Spoonbills and Glossy Ibis can also be found in good numbers.
|Rice fields were being prepared for next year with Cattle Egrets following close behind.|
With the rice fields now being prepared for next year, there are plenty of water channels to investigate but the sun's reflection can be quite harsh at this time of year, particularly as you look directly into it from the trackside. Green Sandpipers were in good numbers and Black-winged Stilt, Ruff, Spotted Redshank, Snipe, Lapwing, Greenshank and Little-ringed Plover were all noted.
|Hybrid Lesser/Greater Spotted Eagle.|
A couple of Red Kites were noted today along with nine Marsh Harriers but we drew a blank on Hen Harriers (a wintering species here). Still, we did manage views of an Eagle Sp. in our search for a Lesser-spotted Eagle and I've been informed since that the above bird is likely a hybrid Lesser/Greater Spotted Eagle which is known to the area.
|Stonechats (at least 15 seen today) like Chiffchaff have been seen in good numbers throughout our stay.|
Passerines of note today included Spanish Sparrow, Corn Bunting, Crested Lark, Black Redstart, Blackcap, Serin, Zitting Cisticola and over twenty wintering Chiffchaffs, the latter of which have been in large numbers during most outings in Spain throughout the past few weeks.
If you are interested in the history of La Janda there's a good article called 'The Rise and Fall (and Rise Again) of La Janda' which can be found HERE