Day Two, Garnets and Rocks.
The day started with a drive down to El Hoyazo near Nijar and a rumble up a couple of dirt tracks to reach the site of a small dormant volcano. On the area below the parking spot a couple of European Bee-eaters (Abejaruco Común / Merops apiaster) were seen hawking around some sand pit areas. We then walked up a trail to the top of a valley where the edge of the volcano was defined by some messinian reef development (Almost sounds as though I know some thing about what I am writing doesn’t it, just repeating what Linda had written). On the way up the ground was covered in a fine red gravel of Garnets, some quite large ones. Other minerals found included samples of sillimanite (white and feathery) and cordierite (blue/grey). On the return walk we picked up Black Wheatear (Collalba Negra / Oenanthe leucura), Hoopoe (Abubilla / Upupa epops), Black-eared Wheatear (Collalba Rubia / Oenanthe hispanica) and Woodchat Shrike (Alcaudón Común / Lanius senator).
We then spent some time in Nijar where we got some lunch items and headed out to the Sierra Alhamilla, at the first site Nightingale (Ruisenor Común / Luscinia megarhynchos) and Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra) could be heard. The rest of the day was spent calling at different site through the sierra and then on wards down to the coast. Here we stopped at a rocky area on the beach, while the rocks were being examined I picked up several Yellow-legged Gull (Gaviota Patiamarilla / Larus Michahellis), a couple of Audouin's Gulls (Gaviota de Audouin / Larus audouinii) and a single Great Cormorant (Cormorán Grande / Phalacrocorax carbo). On the rocks Seaside Daisy (Asteriscus maritimus) was very common. We then made our way back to the villa via mercodona supermarket.
Photographs from the top: Linda giving a brief in the Volcano, Garnets in Rock, Group in the Sierra, Layering in the Sierra and Rocks on the beach.