Friday, 12 March 2010

Los Barrios and near Tarifa, Cadiz Province.

Day Two, Catching up with the Migrants.

The day started with me dropping Jayne off at the boarder crossing on to Gibraltar and I returned to the fields near Los Barrios looking for the Long-legged Buzzard (Busardo Moro / Buteo fufinus). The
Cattle Egrets (Gorilla Bueyera / Bubulcus ibis), Little Egrets (Garceta Común / Egretta garzetta), Spoonbill (Espátula Común / Platalea leucorodia) and White Storks (Ciguena Blanca / Ciconia ciconia) were all still there, along with about 30 Grey Herons (Garza Real / Ardea cinerea) and a few Mallard (Anade Azulón / Anas platyrhynchos).
The early migrating birds from Africa started to arrive with good numbers of Black Kites (Milano Negro / Milvus migrans); about 70 birds were seen along with 20+ Short-toed Eagles (Culebrera Europeo / Circaetus gallicus). Along the ridge amongst the pylons a couple of spiraling columns of Griffon Vulture (Bultre Leonado / Gyps fulvus) were seen moving east. On the other side of the Autovia I started to check out several farm tracks and quickly located a couple of Ospreys (Águila Pescardora / Pandion haliaetus), Peregrine Falcon (Halcón Peregrino / Falco peregrinus), Montagu's (Aguilucho Cenizo / Circus pygargus) and Marsh Harriers (Aguilucho Lagunero Occidental / Circus aeruginosus), Common Kestrel (Cernicalo Vulga / Falco tinnunculus) and my first Woodchat Shrike (Alcaudón Común / Lanius senator) of the year.
Later I went further along the coast towards Tarifa and stopped at a mirador where I started to pick up a few passage raptors, the first was an adult Egyptian Vulture (Alimoche Común / Neophron percnopterus), followed by good numbers of Griffon Vultures (Bultre Leonado / Gyps fulvus) and Short-toed Eagles (Culebrera Europeo / Circaetus gallicus).
I returned to the site at Los Barrios and still did not find the Buzzard but relocated the two Ospreys easily as both were in the same place as when I left. I also added Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra), Common Swift (Vencejo Común / Apus apus), Pallid Swift (Vencejo Pálido / Apus pallidus), Barn Swallow (Golondrina Común / Hirundo rustica), House Martin (Avión Común / Delichon urbica), Hoopoe (Abubilla / Upupa epops), Goldfinch (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis), Greenfinch (Verderón Común / Carduelis chloris), Linnet (Pardillo Común / Carduelis cannabina), Meadow Pipit (Bistita Común / Anthus pratensis), Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor), Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula), Blackcap (Curruca Capirotada / Sylvia atricapilla), Common Moorhen (Gallineta Común / Gallinula Chloropus), Common Chiffchaff (Mosquitero Común / Phylloscopus collybita), Collared Dove (Tórtola Turca / Streptopelia decaocto), Sardinian Warbler (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala), Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus) and Little Grebe (Zampullín Común / Tachybaptus ruficollis). On the way back to Gibraltar to meet Jayne I picked up Black-headed (Gaviota Riedora / Larus ridibundus), Lesser Black-backed (Gaviota Somria / Larus fuscus) and Yellow-legged Gulls (Gaviota Patiamarilla / Larus Michahellis) and Great Cormorant (Cormorán Grande / Phalacrocorax carbo).
I did not do any birding on Gibraltar, I meet Jayne and we had some lunch before having a drive down to Europa point and around on to the beach areas on the east side. The over whelming memory was of rubbish, more rubbish and lots of mess, when there are some nice beaches in the local areas just over the boarder I don’t see any reason to visit the place.
Photographs from the top: Black Kite (Milano Negro / Milvus migrans), Yellow-legged Gull (Gaviota Patiamarilla / Larus Michahellis) and Gibraltar West Beach.

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