Saturday, 4 May 2019

Travelling South to Malaga Airport and Guadalhorce, Malaga Province.

Leicester Ladies tour of Extremadura.
Travelling and some Birding, Day Eight.
Lots of Motorways and then a good number of trip ticks to finish off with.

Western Yellow Wagtail (Lavandera Boyera / Motacilla flava thunbergi).
We were up and on our way early, heading south to Malaga Airport so that we could get Rona there for her earlier flight to Glasgow. As we drove south we picked up a few new species and had views of others including Short-toed (Culebrera Europeo / Circaetus gallicus) and Golden Eagle (Águila Real / Aquila chrysaetos), Griffon Vulture (Bultre Leonado / Gyps fulvus), near La Granjuela our second Black-winged Kite (Elanio Común / Elanus caeruleus) which sat nicely on a wooden telegraph pole for us, Common Kestrel (Cernicalo Vulgar / Falco tinnunculus), a couple of Montagu's Harriers (Aguilucho Cenizo / Circus pygargus), Common (Urraca / Pica pica) and Iberian  Magpie (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cooki), Hoopoe (Abubilla / Upupa epops), Calandra Lark (Calandria / Melanocorypha calandra), European Bee-eater (Abejaruco Común / Merops apiaster), White Stork (Ciguena Blanca / Ciconia ciconia) and lots of Black Kites (Milano Negro / Milvus migrans) which were searching the tarmac for roadkill.
Western Yellow Wagtail (Lavandera Boyera / Motacilla flava thunbergi).
We stopped for fuel and some of the ladies heard Green Woodpecker (Pito Real / Picus viridis) whilst we were stopped and on a wooded bank opposite we saw Turtle Dove (Tórtola Europea / Streptopelia turtur), Great Tit (Carbonera Común / Parus major), Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus) and heard a calling Red-legged Partridge (Perdiz Roja / Alectoris rufa).
Western Yellow Wagtail (Lavandera Boyera / Motacilla flava thunbergi).
We continued south and by the time we reached the Airport we had made a lunch stop and added Common Buzzard (Busardo Ratonero / Buteo buteo), Black-winged Stilt (Ciguenela Común / Himantopus himantopus) and Black-headed Gull (Gaviota Riedora / Larus ridibundus) on some flooded rice fields, Rock Dove (Paloma Bravía / Columba livia), Woodpigeon (Paloma Torcaz / Columba palumbus), Red-rumped Swallow (Golondrina Dáurica / Hirundo daurica), Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata), Jackdaw (Grajilla / Corvus monedula), Raven (Cuervo / Corvus corax), Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor), Mistle Thrush (Zorzal Charlo / Turdus viscivorus), Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra) and down on the coast Monk Parakeet (Cotorra Argentina / Myiopsitta monachus) and Yellow-legged Gull (Gaviota Patiamarilla / Larus Michahellis).
From right to left and back to front Sanderling (Correlimos Tridáctilo / Calidris alba), Curlew Sandpiper (Correlimos Zarapitin / Calidris ferruginea), Ringed Plover (Chorlitejo Grande / Charadrius hiaticula) and Sanderling (Correlimos Tridáctilo / Calidris alba).
We arrived at the airport on time and the Ladies and I said goodbye to Rona and then went back out for another couple of hours birding down at the Pools at Guadalhorce. We walked into the reserve along the beach and made for the main hide where the new species for the trip just kept coming and included Audouin's (Gaviota de Audouin / Larus audouinii) and Slender-billed Gull (Gaviota Picofina / Larus genei), Sandwich (Charrán Patinegro / Sterna sandvicensis) and Whiskered Terns (Fumarel Cariblanca / Chilidonias hybridus), Dunlin (Correlimos Común / Calidris alpina), Avocet (Avoceta Común / Recurvirostra avosetta), Kentish (Chorlitejo Patinegro / Charadrius alexandrinus) and Ringed Plover (Chorlitejo Grande / Charadrius hiaticula), Sanderling (Correlimos Tridáctilo / Calidris alba), Curlew Sandpiper (Correlimos Zarapitin / Calidris ferruginea), Shelduck (Tarro Blanco / Tadoma tadorna), White-headed Duck (Malvasia Cabeciblanca / Oxyura leucocephala), Bonelli's Warbler (Mosquitero Papialbo / Phylloscopus bonelli) and a very smart Western Yellow Wagtail (Lavandera Boyera / Motacilla flava thunbergi) which is one of the more northern races which pass through the area but is rarer than most.
Dunlin (Correlimos Común / Calidris alpina) and Sanderling (Correlimos Tridáctilo / Calidris alba).
We added more species as we walked around the reserve which we had already seen and then headed to the airport again where I said goodbye to the rest of the Leicester Ladies before travelling back home.
Whiskered Terns (Fumarel Cariblanca / Chilidonias hybridus).
Thanks to all the Ladies for making this a very successful trip, they all worked hard to find as many species as possible. Hope you all enjoyed it as much as I did.

Friday, 3 May 2019

Castillo de Monfrague, Rio Tozo, La Cumbre, Río Tamuja near Santa Marta de Magasca, Llanos de Cáceres, Trujillo, Rio Almonte, Fields Near Torrejón el Rubio, Extremadura.

Leicester Ladies tour of Extremadura.
Full days Birding, Day Seven.
Mountains, Fields, more Fields and some water.

Short-toed Treecreeper (Agateador Común / Certhia brachydactyla).
Jane H, Sue, Jan and I headed up to the car park below the Castillo whilst Rona and Jane W had a day around Torrejon. We parked and then took a walk up through the woods to just below the castle and for the whole walk we could hear singing Golden Oriole (Oropéndola / Oriolus oriolus) but it was not until we were nearly back down at the van when a pair flew across infront of us.
Short-toed Treecreeper (Agateador Común / Certhia brachydactyla).
As we walked up we had Common Chaffinch (Pinzón Vulgar / Fringilla coelebs), Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus), a singing male Subalpine Warbler (Curruca Carrasquena / Sylvia cantillans) as well as several Sardinian (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala) and a fine male Orphean (Curruca Mirlano / Sylvia hortensis) which showed well for us.
Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra).
We also heard and then saw a Short-toed Treecreeper (Agateador Común / Certhia brachydactyla),
Jay (Arrendajo / Garrulus glandarius), Griffon (Bultre Leonado / Gyps fulvus) and European Black Vulture (Buitre Negro / Aegypius monachus), House (Avión Común / Delichon urbica) and Crag Martin (Avión Roquero / Ptyonoprogne rupestris), Hoopoe (Abubilla / Upupa epops), Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula), a calling Red-legged Partridge (Perdiz Roja / Alectoris rufa), Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor), Great (Carbonera Común / Parus major) and Blue Tit (Herrerillo Común / Parus caeruleus), House Sparrow (Gorrión Común / Passer domesticus), Barn (Golondrina Común / Hirundo rustica) and Red-rumped Swallows (Golondrina Dáurica / Hirundo daurica), Wren (Chochin / Troglodytes troglodytes) and as we got back to the van a male Cirl Bunting (Escribano Soteno / Emberiza cirlus).
Ocellated Lizard (Lacerta lepida).
We got back in to the van and headed south and stopped again at the bridge over the Rio Tozo where we scanned up and down stream finding European Bee-eater (Abejaruco Común / Merops apiaster), Great Reed (Carricero Tordal / Acrocephalus arundinaceus) and Cetti's Warbler (Ruisenor Bastardo / Cettia cetti), Nightingale (Ruisenor Común / Luscinia megarhynchos), White Wagtail (Lavandera Blanca / Montacilla alba), Golden Oriole, Red-rumped Swallow, Crag Martin, Crested Lark (Cogujada / Galerida cristata), Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra) and on one of the wire fences a newly arrived Spotted Flycatcher (Papamoscas Gris / Muscicapa striata).
Large Psammodromus (Lagartija colilarga / Psammodromus algirus).
We continued on down to Trujillo and then headed west towards Santa Marta de Magasca and out on to the fields. We drove out along the track and parked in the same area as we had a couple of days earlier but things were quiet, there were no Great (Avutarda Común / Otis tarda) or Little Bustard (Sisón Común / Tetrax tetrax) or the corvid like calls of the Pin-tailed Sandgrouse (Ganga Ibérica / Pterocles alchata). 
Barn Swallow (Golondrina Común / Hirundo rustica).
However we did record Calandra Larks (Calandria / Melanocorypha calandra), White Stork (Ciguena Blanca / Ciconia ciconia), Black-winged Stilt (Ciguenela Común / Himantopus himantopus), Mallard (Anade Azulón / Anas platyrhynchos), Grey Heron (Garza Real / Ardea cinerea), Little Egret (Garceta Común / Egreeta garzetta) and further along the track in the narrower parts between large dry stone walls we found a couple of Ocellated Lizards (Lacerta lepida), several Large Psammodromus (Lagartija colilarga / Psammodromus algirus), an Andalucian Wall Lizard (Podarcis vaucheri) along with the best views of the trip of an adult Spanish Imperial Eagle (Aguila Imperial Ibérica / Aguila adalberti).
Ocellated Lizard (Lacerta lepida).
As we drove back towards the tarmac we found European Bee-eater, Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata), a newly flying young Barn Swallow, Red-legged Partridge (Perdiz Roja / Alectoris rufa) and Woodchat Shrike (Alcaudón Común / Lanius senator).
European Bee-eater (Abejaruco Común / Merops apiaster).
We passed Santa Marta de Magasca this time even though the pull of the coffee was strong and stopped again by the bridge over the Rio Tamula where we again saw a couple of Viperine Snakes (Culebra Viperina / Natrix maura), Stripe-necked Terrapin (Mauremys leprosa), Perez's Frogs (Rana Común / Pelophylax perezi), quite a few birds already mentioned and half a dozen or so Blue-eye / Goblet-marked Damselflies (Erythromma lindenii).
Spanish Sparrow (Gorrión Moruno / Passer hispaniolensis).
We continued along this road and spent some time on the road along side the fields of Llanos de Cáceres where we again had good views of Roller (Carraca / Coracias garrulus) and Lesser Kestrel (Cernicola Primilla / Falco naumanni) which were still battling over a nest box, Spanish Sparrow (Gorrión Moruno / Passer hispaniolensis), Jackdaw (Grajilla / Corvus monedula) and a Raven (Cuervo / Corvus corax).
White Stork (Ciguena Blanca / Ciconia ciconia).
Once we were back at the motorway we headed back into Trujillo and to the Bullring where we had views of the Lesser Kestrels,  which swooped in and landed amongst the many Spotless Starlings and House Sparrows whilst a couple of Black Kites quartered the roof tops looking for some prey.
Tounge Orchid (Serapias lingua).
We started to make our way back to the accommodation via the Rio Almonte where we spent a short time finding Little Grebe (Zampullín Común / Tachybaptus ruficollis), Melodious Warbler (Zarcero Común / Hippolais polyglotta) and more European Bee-eater.
We returned to Torrejon and then went just down the road to check a spot where in the past I have seen a nest site of an Spanish Iperial Eagle but it was no longer there, however by a small pool nearby we found a Woodlark (Totovia / Lullula arborea), Iberian  Magpie (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cooki), Woodchat Shrike, Blue / Common Emperor (Anax imperator), many more Blue-eye / Goblet-marked Damselflies, Tounge (Serapias lingua) x100+ and Small-tongue Orchids (Serapias parviflora) x1.
Our final stop of the day was at the Embalse de Torrejón el Rubio which looked like a good spot but was quiet on our visit and we only added a Common Sandpiper (Andarrios Chico / Actitis hypoleucos), House Martin (Avión Común / Delichon urbica), Common Moorhen (Gallineta Común / Gallinulas chloropus) and a Blue Tit (Herrerillo Común / Parus caeruleus) before heading back to the apartment.
Small-tongue Orchid (Serapias parviflora).
Blue-eye / Goblet-marked Damselflies (Erythromma lindenii).


Thursday, 2 May 2019

Castillo de Monfrague, Salto Del Gitano, Mirador La Tajadilla, Mirador de la portilla del Tietar, Arroyo de Valbueno and Embalse de Arrocampo, Extremadura.

Leicester Ladies tour of Extremadura.
Full days Birding, Day Six.
Mountains, Woodlands and back to the Embalse to finish the day.

Griffon Vulture (Bultre Leonado / Gyps fulvus).
We set off towards the Monfrague area and as we were quite early drove up to the parking area by the steps up to the Castle dropping Jane W, Jan and Sue at the bottom to walk up. Rona and Jane H headed off up to the Castillo whilst I waited for the others.
Andalucian Wall Lizard (Podarcis vaucheri).
In the sky over head and below us by the time we reached the fort we could see Griffon (Bultre Leonado / Gyps fulvus), European Black (Buitre Negro / Aegypius monachus) and Egyptian Vultures (Alimoche Común / Neophron percnopterus) and on the buildings and in the woods around the castillo we saw Rock Bunting (Escribano Montesino / Emberiza cia), Goldfinch (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis), Greenfinch (Verderón Común / Carduelis chloris), Black Redstart (Colirrojo Tizón / Phoenicurus ochruros), Great Tit (Carbonera Común / Parus major) and in the air House Martin (Avión Común / Delichon urbica), Red-rumped Swallow (Golondrina Dáurica / Hirundo daurica),  Common Swift (Vencejo Común / Apus apus), as she walked down to the Van Sue had a Firecrest (Reyezuelo Listado / Regulus ignicapillus) in the Oaks and we all saw a tree climbing
The Ladies up at the Castle.
Andalucian Wall Lizard (Podarcis vaucheri), on the drive back down we heard Golden Oriole (Oropéndola / Oriolus oriolus) and Orphean Warbler (Curruca Mirlano / Sylvia hortensis).
On the walk down the track from the Castillo.
Our next stop was down at the main Salto Del Gitano where we parked and watched the Pena Falcon crags, we were quickly put on to a distant Bonelli's Eagle (Aguila-azor Perdicera / Hieraaetus faciatus) which was up with large numbers of Griffon Vultures and other raptors.
Black Stork (Ciguena Negra / Ciconia nigra) sat on nest.
In the same area we had a couple of Black Storks (Ciguena Negra / Ciconia nigra) one which was sat on a nest below us and another stood on the rocks higher up, a male Blue-rock Thrush (Roquero Solitario / Monticola solitarius), plent of Crag Martins (Avión Roquero / Ptyonoprogne rupestris), a
Black Kite (Milano Negro / Milvus migrans).
 Black Kite (Milano Negro / Milvus migrans) which came in close, Serins (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus), Iberian  Magpie (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cooki), Common Chaffinch (Pinzón Vulgar / Fringilla coelebs), a flying Grey Heron (Garza Real / Ardea cinerea), Barn Swallow (Golondrina Común / Hirundo rustica) and Wren (Chochin / Troglodytes troglodytes).
Egyptian Vulture (Alimoche Común / Neophron percnopterus).
We returned to Van and then drove to Mirador La Tajadilla where we had views of a sitting Egyptian Vulture, a flying Black Stork, Small White (Pieris rapae), Clouded Yellow (Colias Común / Colias corcea) and Speckled Wood (Pararge aegeria).
Black Stork (Ciguena Negra / Ciconia nigra).
Mirador de la portilla del Tietar was the next stop where we had a great views of a adult Spanish Imperial Eagle (Aguila Imperial Ibérica / Aguila adalberti) which flew out over the river and away, Common Kestrel (Cernicalo Vulgar / Falco tinnunculus), lots of Griffon and a couple of Black Vultures and as we walked back to the Van we caught up with a male Subalpine Warbler (Curruca Carrasquena / Sylvia cantillans), Long-tailed (Mito / Aegithalos caudatus) and Blue Tit (Herrerillo Común / Parus caeruleus), Cirl Bunting (Escribano Soteno / Emberiza cirlus), a singing Nightingale (Ruisenor Común / Luscinia megarhynchos) and a couple of Common Sandpipers (Andarrios Chico / Actitis hypoleucos) which flew along the banks of the river below us.
Adult Spanish Imperial Eagle (Aguila Imperial Ibérica / Aguila adalberti).
Just up the road from here we stopped by the Arroyo de Valbueno and had our lunch before finding a smart singing Sardinian (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala), Melodious (Zarcero Común / Hippolais polyglotta) and Cetti's Warbler (Ruisenor Bastardo / Cettia cetti), Blackcap (Curruca Capirotada / Sylvia atricailla), Linnet (Pardillo Común / Carduelis cannabina), Woodchat Shrike (Alcaudón Común / Lanius senator), Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula), more Nightingales, Woodpigeon (Paloma Torcaz / Columba palumbus), a fly through Kingfisher (Martin Pescador / Alcedo atthis) and a Great Spotted Woodpecker (Pico Picapinos / Dendrocopos major) which went through eaqually as fast.
Melodious Warbler (Zarcero Común / Hippolais polyglotta).
We moved on east finding a nice colony of Sand Martin (Avión Zapador / Riparia riparia) on the way and at a spot near Embalse de Arrocampo where we had really nice views of a stunning adult Black-winged Kite (Elanio Común / Elanus caeruleus) which was sat in a dead tree in a field. In the same area we had European Bee-eater (Abejaruco Común / Merops apiaster), Common Magpie (Urraca / Pica pica), Crested Lark (Cogujada / Galerida cristata), Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra), Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata) and Cardinal Fritillary (Pandora / Argynnis pandora).
Glossy Ibis (Morito Común / Plegadis falcinellus).
We drove to the reserve at the Embalse where we went straight out to hide 2 where we stood on the ramp up again and had good views of a group of 5 Glossy Ibis (Morito Común / Plegadis falcinellus), Purple (Garza Imperial / Ardea purpurea) and Grey Heron (Garza Real / Ardea cinerea), Little (Garceta Común / Egreeta garzetta), Great (Garceta Grande / Egretta alba) and Western Cattle Egret (Garcilla Bueyera / Bubulcus ibis), Little Bittern (Avetorillo Común / Ixobrychus minutus), Savi's Warbler (Buscarla Unicolor / Locustella luscinoides), Little Grebe (Zampullín Común / Tachybaptus ruficollis), Red Kite (Milano Real / Milvus milvus), Marsh Harrier (Aguilucho Lagunero Occidental / Circus aeruginosus), Iberian Grey Shrike (Alcaudón Real Meridional / Lanius meridionalis), Great Reed Warbler (Carricero Tordal / Acrocephalus arundinaceus), Collared Dove (Tórtola Turca / Streptopelia decaocto), Gull-billed Tern (Pagaza Piconegra / Gelochelidon nilotica), Eurasian Coot (Focha Común / Fulica atra), Common Moorhen (Gallineta Común / Gallinulas chloropus), Mallard (Anade Azulón / Anas platyrhynchos),a calling Little Bustard (Sisón Común / Tetrax tetrax) which some of the ladies heard and as we were driving out a nice group of Spotless Starlings (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor) which posed well for us.
Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor) female.
We moved on round to hide 4 where we heard a calling Penduline Tit (Pájaro Moscón / Remiz pendulinus) several time but we did not find it, we also had Reed Warbler (Carricero Común / Acrocephalus scrpaceus), White Wagtail (Lavandera Blanca / Montacilla alba), a calling Common Cuckoo (Cuco Común / Cuculus canorus), Great Cormorant (Cormorán Grande / Phalacrocroax carbo), a noisy but elusive Purple / Western Swamp-hen (Calamon Común / Porphyrio porphyrio), Zitting Cisticola (Buitrón / Cisticola juncidis), Perez's Frog (Rana Común / Pelophylax perezi), Small Copper (Lycaena phlaeas) and several male and 1 female Banded Groundlings (Brachythemis impartita).
Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor) male.

Wednesday, 1 May 2019

Trujillo and Belem Plains, Extremadura.

Leicester Ladies tour of Extremadura.
Full days Birding, Day Five.
Almost a rest Day.

Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus).
The Ladies and I travelled south to the town of Trujillo where I dropped them off so that they could have a wander around the Castillo and the annual Cheese fiesta in the town centre which seems to be on every time I go to look around.
Eurasian Coots (Focha Común / Fulica atra).
Whilst they were there I went and check a couple of pools nearby but they were generally quiet and at the first the Estanque del Albuera I only picked up Mallard (Anade Azulón / Anas platyrhynchos), Gadwall (Anade Friso / Anas strepera), Eurasian Coot (Focha Común / Fulica atra), Common Moorhen (Gallineta Común / Gallinulas chloropus), Little Grebe (Zampullín Común / Tachybaptus ruficollis), Common Sandpiper (Andarrios Chico / Actitis hypoleucos), Zitting Cisticola (Buitrón / Cisticola juncidis), Common Buzzard (Busardo Ratonero / Buteo buteo), Barn (Golondrina Común / Hirundo rustica) and Red-rumped Swallows (Golondrina Dáurica / Hirundo daurica) and Common Swift (Vencejo Común / Apus apus).
Small Copper (Lycaena phlaeas).
The second stop was at another lake called Estanque de San Lázaro which was on the edge of Trujillo, there were severl pairs of breeding Black-winged Stilt (Ciguenela Común / Himantopus himantopus) as well as Little Ringed Plover (Chorlitejo Chico / Charadrius dubius), White Wagtail (Lavandera Blanca / Montacilla alba), Collared Dove (Tórtola Turca / Streptopelia decaocto), White Stork (Ciguena Blanca / Ciconia ciconia), House Sparrow (Gorrión Común / Passer domesticus) and as I walked back to the Van a very smart male Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus) was singing from a wire and it sat nicely for the camera.
Red-underwing Skipper (Spialia sertorius).
At the nearby bull ring I had  view of a couple of Lesser Kestrels (Cernicola Primilla / Falco naumanni) as they approached their nests in the roof along side loads of Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor) and a couple of passing Black Kites (Milano Negro / Milvus migrans).
Spanish Sparrow (Gorrión Moruno / Passer hispaniolensis).
I made my way into the centre of town where I found the ladies just about to have a coffee so I joined themand then later we headed out on to the Belen Plain and then to a track a few KM where we parked and looked for plants and butteflies and found Southern Red Bartsia (Parentucellia latifolia), Yellow Lupin (Lupinus luteus), Rabbits bread (Andryala integrifolia), Pitch Trefoil (Psoralea bituminosa), Barbary Nut (Moraea sisyrinchium), Ox-eye Daisy (Leucanthemum vulgare), Red-striped Oil Beetle (Berberomeloe majalis), Small Copper (Lycaena phlaeas), Meadow Brown (Maniola jurtina ssp hispulla), Small Heath (Coenonympha pamphilus), Clouded Yellow (Colias Común / Colias corcea), Common / Southern Blue (Polyommatus icarus / celina), an unnamed Moth species and Montpellier Snake (Malpolon monspessulanus).
Red-striped Oil Beetle (Berberomeloe majalis).
Further along the track we stopped again and found Green-underside Blue (Glaucopsyche alexis), Red-underwing Skipper (Spialia sertorius), Small White (Pieris rapae), 4x Turtle Dove (Tórtola Europea / Streptopelia turtur) which rapidly flew passed the van and away.
Meadow Brown (Maniola jurtina ssp hispulla).
As we drove back towards the village we added Rabbit (Conejo / Oryctolagus cuniculus), Thekla (Cogujada Montesina / Galerida theklae), Crested (Cogujada / Galerida cristata) and Calandra Lark (Calandria / Melanocorypha calandra), Common Magpie (Urraca / Pica pica), Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra), Whinchat (Tarabilla Nortena / Saxicola rubetra), Griffon Vulture (Bultre Leonado / Gyps fulvus), heard a calling Little Bustard (Sisón Común / Tetrax tetrax), Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata), Iberian Grey Shrike (Alcaudón Real Meridional / Lanius meridionalis), Jackdaw (Grajilla / Corvus monedula), Raven (Cuervo / Corvus corax),
Common / Southern Blue (Polyommatus icarus / celina).
Our last stop was on the way back North at the Rio Almonte where we had a good look at both sides of the river and were very pleased to have brief views of a pair of Otter (Nutria / Lutra lutra) playing away up stream. Other species included Little Grebe (Zampullín Común / Tachybaptus ruficollis), Great Cormorant (Cormorán Grande / Phalacrocroax carbo), Grey Heron (Garza Real / Ardea cinerea), 2 distant passing Black Storks (Ciguena Negra / Ciconia nigra), more Griffon and
Unnamed Moth.
European Black Vulture (Buitre Negro / Aegypius monachus), Common Kestrel (Cernicalo Vulgar / Falco tinnunculus), Rock Dove (Paloma Bravía / Columba livia), Woodpigeon (Paloma Torcaz / Columba palumbus), Linnet (Pardillo Común / Carduelis cannabina), Common Cuckoo (Cuco Común / Cuculus canorus) heard, Pallid Swift (Vencejo Pálido /Apus pallidus), European Bee-eater (Abejaruco Común / Merops apiaster), Hoopoe (Abubilla / Upupa epops), House (Avión Común / Delichon urbica) and Crag Martin (Avión Roquero / Ptyonoprogne rupestris), White Wagtail (Lavandera Blanca / Montacilla alba), Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula), Cetti's (Ruisenor Bastardo / Cettia cetti), Great Reed (Carricero Tordal / Acrocephalus arundinaceus), Reed (Carricero Común / Acrocephalus scrpaceus) and Sardinian Warbler (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala), Nightingale (Ruisenor Común / Luscinia megarhynchos), Iberian  Magpie (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cooki), Spanish Sparrow (Gorrión Moruno / Passer hispaniolensis),
Unnamed Moth.
Woodchat Shrike (Alcaudón Común / Lanius senator), Great (Carbonera Común / Parus major) and Blue Tit (Herrerillo Común / Parus caeruleus), Common Chaffinch (Pinzón Vulgar / Fringilla coelebs), Spanish Sparrow (Gorrión Moruno / Passer hispaniolensis) and as we walked back to the van we had a pair of Hawfinch (Picogordo / Coccotraustes coccotrauetes) fly off but not before they made it onto the list.
Thekla Lark (Cogujada Montesina / Galerida theklae).
During the evening Rona showed us a shot she had taken in the fort and we were then able to add Black Wheatear (Collalba Negra / Oenanthe leucura) to the trip list s well.

Tuesday, 30 April 2019

La Cumbre, Río Tamuja near Santa Marta de Magasca, Llanos de Cáceres, Embalse de Guadiloba in Extremadura.

Leicester Ladies tour of Extremadura.
Full days Birding, Day Four.
A cracking day on the plains and around another Embalse.

Great Bustards (Avutarda Común / Otis tarda).
We set off south again toward Trujillo and then took the motorway out towards Caceres, on the way we had views of Common Buzzard (Busardo Ratonero / Buteo buteo), Black Kite (Milano Negro / Milvus migrans), Iberian (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cooki) and Common Magpie (Urraca / Pica pica), White Storks (Ciguena Blanca / Ciconia ciconia), House Sparrows (Gorrión Común / Passer domesticus), Corn Buntings (Triguero / Emberiza calandra), Collared Dove (Tórtola Turca / Streptopelia decaocto) and Barn Swallow (Golondrina Común / Hirundo rustica).
Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra).
Our first stop was on a raised mound with views over a pool and some large fields where we added Northern Wheatear (Collalba Gris / Oenanthe oenanthe), several pairs of Spanish Sparrows (Gorrión Moruno / Passer hispaniolensis) which were collecting nest material from around the animal feeders, Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata), Goldfinch (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis), Hoopoe (Abubilla / Upupa epops), European Bee-eaters (Abejaruco Común / Merops apiaster), Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor), Woodpigeon (Paloma Torcaz / Columba palumbus), a calling Common Cuckoo (Cuco Común / Cuculus canorus) and a flight of 6 calling Pin-tailed Sandgrouse (Ganga Ibérica / Pterocles alchata).
Green-Striped White (Euchloe belemia).
We drove a short distance down the road and took to a track, at the start we parked and soon located the first of a dozen or so Great Bustards (Avutarda Común / Otis tarda), there were 2 males here and later we had another 9 female birds further down the track. 
Small Copper (Lycaena phlaeas).
At the first parking spot we also had Iberian Grey Shrike (Alcaudón Real Meridional / Lanius meridionalis), Zitting Cisticola (Buitrón / Cisticola juncidis), Calandra (Calandria / Melanocorypha calandra) and Crested Lark (Cogujada / Galerida cristata) and a couple of Spanish Marbled Whites (Medioluto Inés / Melanargia ines).
Bath White (Blanqiverdosa / Pontia daplidice).
A few hundred meters along the track we stopped again just short of a couple more bus loads of birders and were soon watching a pair of adult Spanish Imperial Eagles (Aguila Imperial Ibérica / Aguila adalberti) which flew up out of a couple of distant Eucalyptus Trees and in the distance several Griffon Vultures (Bultre Leonado / Gyps fulvus) and a couple of European Black (Buitre Negro / Aegypius monachus).
On a small pool nearby we found a couple of Black-winged Stilts (Ciguenela Común / Himantopus himantopus), Mallard (Anade Azulón / Anas platyrhynchos), Little Grebe (Zampullín Común / Tachybaptus ruficollis) and I heard a single call from a flying Black-bellied Sandgrouse (Ganga Ortega / Pterocles orientalis) but unfortunately it stayed as a guide only as none of the ladies heard it.
In and around the van we also have Small (Pieris rapae) and Bath Whites (Blanqiverdosa / Pontia daplidice), Small Copper (Lycaena phlaeas), Meadow Brown (Maniola jurtina ssp hispulla), Spanish Brown Argus (Aricia cramera), Field Marigold (Calendula arvensis), Hop Trefoil (Trifolium campestre), Purple Bugloss (Echium plantagineum), Reichardia tingitana and from down by the pool we could hear lots of Perez's Frogs (Rana Común / Pelophylax perezi).
Crested Lark (Cogujada / Galerida cristata).
We moved a little further along the track where we had a group of female Great Bustards and the Sue came up with a fine but hard to see Little Bustard (Sisón Común / Tetrax tetrax) which managed to slip away unseen by some of the group.
Viperine Snake (Culebra Viperina / Natrix maura).
A little further along the track we had another male Great Bustard in a field with several White Storks, Red-legged Partridge (Perdiz Roja / Alectoris rufa) and a female Whinchat (Tarabilla Nortena / Saxicola rubetra) and nearer to us several Green-Striped Whites (Euchloe belemia).
Viperine Snake (Culebra Viperina / Natrix maura).
After a coffee in Santa Marta de Magasca where we had several Pallid Swifts (Vencejo Pálido /Apus pallidus) over head we made a stop at the bridge over the Rio Tamula find the one and only Grey Wagtail (Lavandera Cascadena / Motacilla cinerea), Cetti's Warbler (Ruisenor Bastardo / Cettia cetti), Common Swift (Vencejo Común / Apus apus), Crag Martin (Avión Roquero / Ptyonoprogne rupestris), Red-rumped Swallow (Golondrina Dáurica / Hirundo daurica) several Viperine Snakes (Culebra Viperina / Natrix maura), Stripe-necked Terrapin (Mauremys leprosa), Red Admiral (Vanessa atalanta), Large White (Pieris brassicae) and Red-striped Oil Beetle (Berberomeloe majalis).
Roller (Carraca / Coracias garrulus).
Our next stop was out on the fields of Llanos de Cáceres where we started off with several Rollers (Carraca / Coracias garrulus) including one bird which was having a good scrap with a female Lesser Kestrel (Cernicola Primilla / Falco naumanni), Jackdaw (Grajilla / Corvus monedula), Raven (Cuervo / Corvus corax), Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus), Common Moorhen (Gallineta Común / Gallinulas chloropus), Gadwall (Anade Friso / Anas strepera) and along the track out to the hide we had a good sized flock of Spanish Sparrows which flew up on to the roadside fences just before we arrived at the best set of gates I have ever seen.
Roller (Carraca / Coracias garrulus).
We did not see much from the hide except for a distant female Montagu's Harrier (Aguilucho Cenizo / Circus pygargus) which was difficult to see in the heat haze but behind the hide on the field we had both Northern and Black-eared Wheatear (Collalba Rubia / Oenanthe hispanica), a couple of Hoopoes and a small group of Short-toed Larks (Terrera Común / Calandrella brachydactyla) looking very pale in the bright sun as well as a Broad-bodied Chaser (Libellula depressa).
Roller (Carraca / Coracias garrulus).
As we were leaving we again bumped into William Haworth again and he kindly showed us a good spot for Spanish Imperial Eagles but the birds were away.
Roller (Carraca / Coracias garrulus).
Our next site was at Embalse de Guadiloba where we spent the rest of the day traversing the tracks right around the Northern shore where we added a summer plumaged Grey Plover (Chorlito Gris / Pluviali squatarola), Little Ringed Plover (Chorlitejo Chico / Charadrius dubius), Common Sandpiper (Andarrios Chico / Actitis hypoleucos), Greenshank (Archibebe Claro / Tringa nebularia), Common Redshank (Archibebe Común / Tringa totanus), Great Crested Grebe (Somormujo Lavanco / Podiceps cristatus), Black-headed Gulls (Gaviota Riedora / Larus ridibundus), lots of White Storks, Great Cormorant (Cormorán Grande / Phalacrocroax carbo), Eurasian Coot (Focha Común / Fulica atra), Grey Heron (Garza Real / Ardea cinerea), Marsh Harrier (Aguilucho Lagunero Occidental / Circus aeruginosus), Feral Pigeon (Paloma Bravía / Columba livia), House Martin (Avión Común / Delichon urbica), Subalpine Warbler (Curruca Carrasquena / Sylvia cantillans), Nightingale (Ruisenor Común / Luscinia megarhynchos), Woodchat Shrike (Alcaudón Común / Lanius senator), Common Chaffinch (Pinzón Vulgar / Fringilla coelebs) and Red Kite (Milano Real / Milvus milvus).
Spanish Sparrow (Gorrión Moruno / Passer hispaniolensis).
At one of the lake side stops we also found Small Skipper (Thymelicus sylvestris), Red-veined Darter (Sympetrum fonscolombii), Scarlet Darter (Crocothemis erythraea) before heading back to the accommodation.

Broad-bodied Chaser (Libellula depressa).
Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra).
Small Skipper (Thymelicus sylvestris).
White Stork (Ciguena Blanca / Ciconia ciconia).
Old bridge over the Eastern end of Embalse de Guadiloba.
Old bridge over the Eastern end of Embalse de Guadiloba.