Saturday, 17 July 2010

Huetor Fields, Granada Province.

A walk along the Rio.
Today we jumped in to the car and went down to the bar at the bottom of the road and parked there, Yogi instantly headed for the water and was up to his belly with in seconds of leaving the car. We crossed the Rio or what was left of it and started to walk down the far bank, the first birds seen were Crested Lark (Cogujada Común / Galerida cristata) a small flock flew up from the track side, along with a couple of Hoopoes (Abubilla / Upupa epops) which Yogi made a vain attempt to chase. We carried on down to the goat herders shelter where a dozen or more pairs of Tree Sparrows (Gorrión Molinero / Passer Montanus) were breeding in the metal uprights which held up the shade matting, also in the compound there was a single Little Ringed Plover (Chorlitejo Chico / Charadrius dubius) and a couple of immature Woodchat Shrikes (Alcaudón Común / Lanius senator). 
Short-toed Lark (Terrera Común / Calandrella brachydactyla).
Several Iberian  Magpie (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cooki) were feeding in fig trees on the opposite bank, whilst House Martin (Avión Común / Delichon urbica), Barn (Golondrina Común / Hirundo rustica) and Red-rumped Swallows (Golondrina Dáurica / Hirundo daurica) flew low over a flock of goats in a weed field mopping up the disturbed insects. As we reached the first road bridge a small group of European Bee-eaters (Abejaruco Común / Merops apiaster) about 20 birds flew over calling loudly, other birds seen along this side of the rio included Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula), Collared Dove (Tórtola Turca / Streptopelia decaocto), Common Chaffinch (Pinzón Vulgar / Fringilla coelebs), Common Magpie (Urraca / Pica pica), Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra), Goldfinch (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis), Great Tit (Carbonero Común / Parus major), Linnet (Pardillo Común / Carduelis cannabina), Red-legged Partridge (Perdiz Roja / Alectoris rufa) and Sardinian Warbler (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala).
We then walked along the road for a short before Yogi decided that a dip into one of the running irrigation channels would be a good idea, he dived in went fully under the water and was not to impressed, so he jumped straight back out again before changing his mind and diving back in and floating along with the flow for about 50 meters.
Spanish (Yellow) Wagtail (Lavandera Boyera / Motacilla flava iberiae).
We then turned back towards the bars on a dirt track on the opposite side of the rio. The first birds added along here were a pair of Short-toed Larks (Terrera Común / Calandrella brachydactyla) chasing the hordes of House Sparrows (Gorrión Común / Passer Domesticus) of their patch of field. Spanish (Yellow) Wagtail (Lavandera Boyera / Motacilla flava iberiae) were flushed from the verge all along this track and Zitting Cisticola’s (Buitrón / Cisticola juncidis) zitted continuously over the maze fields. When we again came along side the river we disturbed several more Little Ringed Plovers and a single Black-winged Stilt (Ciguenuela Común / Himantopus himantopus). To finish off we had a quick look at the crossing point and found several male Southern Skimmers (Orthetrum brunneum) chasing each other but there was no sign of a female.

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