Tuesday, 29 September 2009

Return to the Cacín Valley, Granada Province.

Dodging the showers.

John and myself headed out to the Cacín Valley for the morning. We visited the regular site along the agricultural tracks but there was a lot of activity on the fields and birds were few and most were in flight. These included 60+ Calandra Larks (Calandria / Melanocorypha calandra), Crested Lark (Cogujada Común / Galerida cristata), Southern Grey Shrike (Alcaudón Real Meridional / Lanius meridionalis), Yellow Wagtails (Lavandera Boyera / Motacilla flava), Northern Wheatear (Collalba Gris / Oenanthe oenanthe) and Little Owl (Mochuelo Europeo / Athene noctua). We then made our way to the Embalse de Cacín with a quick stop in the road side pine trees after we spotted a Red Squirrel (Sciurus vulgaris) on the ground, by the time we stopped the thing had darted three quarters of the way up one of the trees but we still had good views. Once at the lake there were again good numbers of Common Pochard (Porrón Europeo / Aythya ferina), Northern Shoveler (Cuchara Común / Anas clypeata), Mallard (Azulón Europeo / Anas platyhynchos), Common Coot (Focha Común / Fulica atra), Common Moorhen (Gallineta Común / Gallinula Chloropus) and the single immature Great Crested Grebe (Somormujo Lavanco / Podiceps cristatus) was still there along with several Little Grebes (Zapullín Común / Tachybaptus ruficollis) and a Black-necked Grebe (Zampullín Cuellinegro / Podiceps nigricollis) which has been at the site all summer. Whilst were watching the birds on the lake a couple of late imm Great Spotted Cuckoo (Crialo Europeo / Clamator glandarrius) were heard and seen briefly, along with Green Woodpecker (Pito Real / Picus viridis), Red-legged Partridge (Perdiz Roja / Alectoris rufa), Cetti's (Ruisenor Bastardo / Cettia cetti) and Reed Warblers (Carricero Común / Acrocephalus scirpaceus), Spotted Flycatcher (Papamoscas Gris / Muscicapa striata) and Crag Martins (Avión Roquero / Ptyonoprogne rupestris). On the way back to the house we stopped at a small lake on the side of the A92 where Dragonflies were the main species seen, they included Violet Dropwing (Trithemis annulata), Common Emperor (Anax imperator) and Lesser Emperors (Anax parthenope). The birds seen were Cattle Egrets (Garcilla Bueyera / Bubulcus ibis), Common Sandpiper (Andarrios Chico / Actitis hypoleucos) and 5 Green Sandpipers (Andarrios Grande / Tringa ochropus).
Photographs from the top: Red Squirrel (Sciurus vulgaris) and Violet Dropwing (Trithemis annulata).