🇪🇸 Thursday 20th April 2023 🌤 23C ~ Wind SE @ 3MPH ~The start of just over two weeks in Spain, staying as usual at my friend's villa in Mijas. I decided to begin this visit with a leisurely stroll around Guadahorce in the early afternoon, site details can be found on my blog HERE or by clicking on the SPAIN🇪🇸 link on the top header bar.
|Love them or not Monk Parakeets are a common feature around Guadalhorce
A Hoopoe calling and plenty of House Martins as I walked down to the bridge crossing from the church. The House Martins were busy nest building under the bridge arches and beyond under the road bridge the usual Rock Doves. A few Sardinian Warblers and in the reeds along the river Cetti's Warbler and Reed Warbler and I could already see and hear the marauding Monk Parakeets as I entered the reserve!
|Marbled Duck ~ One of six birds noted today
A Zitting Cisticola was busily zitting overhead and a Nightingale was singing as I reached the hide at Laguna de la Casilla. It seems that last year's reintroduction of Marbled Duck to the site is progressing well as almost immediately after taking a seat a single bird dropped in, six were noted in total today. A half dozen Little Grebes and five Little Egrets, plus a few nest-building pairs of Black-winged Stilt.
|One of three Booted Eagles
My next stop was the del Rio Viejo hide and as a walked along the track three Booted Eagles and a Common Kestrel were overhead. More Black-winged Stilt nest building with Redshank, Ringed Plover, Dunlin and Shelduck on the pool, which had receded a good distance back from the hide.
|Slender-billed Gull on the old river section.
On the old river Sanderling, Ringed Plover and Dunlin were feeding along the waterline, along with two Slender-billed Gulls a short distance out.
|One of the many Sandwich Terns on the Laguna Grande
Very little of note on the sea from the de Aves Marinas and similar along the shoreline as I made my way around to the Laguna Grande, even the fenced nesting area was devoid of birds with the exception of a single Crested Lark.
|A Woodchat Shrike in the heat haze
Walking from the beach to the Laguna Grande a passage of Bee-eaters, plus a Woodchat Shrike, which I managed to photograph through the heat haze.
|Greater Flamingos from the Laguna Grande hide
As always the Laguna Grande was the most productive and so I spent a good hour here. I estimated over 100 Sandwich Terns resting on the surrounding islands mixed in with Mediterranean and Black-headed Gulls. Two Spoonbills were asleep on the far side of the lagoon and out on the water were three more Slender-billed Gulls. A stunning Audouin's Gull stood out for me and of course not to mention the odd Yellow-legged Gull. Five Greater Flamingos were also busily feeding during my stay.
|A single Curlew Sandpiper on the Laguna Grande
My final stop was the Laguna Escondida and here a single Kingfisher just below the hide, along with a few Black-tailed Skimmer dragonflies and lots of Terrapin. Two Marbled Ducks and at least five White-headed ducks were also noted at the rear of the Lagoon.
Butterflies of note today included several Painted Ladies and two Swallowtails and I was quite surprised to find so many Lulworth Skippers on the reserve.
|White-headed Duck (f)