Friday 12 November 2010

Rio Guadalhorce, Malaga Province.

A flying visit.

Monk Parakeets (Cotorra Argentina / Myiopsitta monachus).
I had just a couple of hours for a quick look around the reserve so I headed straight for the beach and had a scan from the sea watch point first. A single female Common Scoter (Negrón Común / Melanitta nigra) was seen diving quite a distance out and at least two Black-necked Grebes (Zampullín Cuellinegro / Podiceps nigricollis) passed west stopping breifly on the sea only about 20 metres out. The usual gulls were all present including 100s of Lesser Black-backed (Gaviota Somria / Larus fuscus), 100+ Mediterranean (Gaviota Cabecinegra / Larus melanocephalus), lots of Black-headed (Gaviota Riedora / Larus ridibundus) and a few Yellow-legged (Gaviota Patiamarilla / Larus Michahellis). I then walked along the beach to the far sea watch point, on the way I added several flocks of Monk Parakeets (Cotorra Argentina / Myiopsitta monachus), a female Marsh Harrier (Aguilucho Lagunero Occidental / Circus aeruginosus), Black Redstart (Colirrojo Tizón / Phoenicurus ochruros), Common Chiffchaff (Mosquitero Común / Phylloscopus collybita) and a single Greenshank (Archibebe Claro / Tringa nebularia). 
Spoonbills (Espátula Común / Platalea leucorodia).
From the sea watch point Northern Gannet (Alcatraz Atlántico / Morus bassanus), Great Cormorant (Cormorán Grande / Phalacrocorax carbo) and Mediterranean Shearwater (Pardela Mediterránea / Puffinus yelkouan) were all seen. I then moved on to the reserve and walked along the embankment towards the wader hide, on the way Crested Lark (Cogujada Común / Galerida cristata), White Wagtail (Lavandera Blanca / Montacilla alba), Common Redshank (Archibebe Común / Tringa totanus) and Black-winged Stilt (Ciguenuela Común / Himantopus himantopus) were seen.
From the hide things looked grim for a short while with just a single Little Egret (Garceta Común / Egretta garzetta) and a few Dunlin (Correlimos Común / Calidris alpina) on view, then things started to appear from the reeds and side channels. The first were two Spoonbills (Espátula Común / Platalea leucorodia) and a small group of Western Cattle Egrets (Garcilla Bueyera / Bubulcus ibis), followed by a single late passage Curlew Sandpiper (Correlimos Zarapitin / Calidris ferruginea) which flew in and joined the Dunlin. Snipe (Agachadiza Común / Gallinago gallinago), Ringed Plover (Chorlitejo Grande / Charadrius hiaticula), Grey Heron (Garza Real / Ardea cinerea) and Little Grebe (Zampullín Común / Tachybaptus ruficollis) soon showed up along with a cracking male Bluethroat (Pechiazul / Luscinia svecica) which showed well for the next ten minutes on the mud to the left of the hide. 
Greater Flamingo (Flamenco Común / Phoenicopterus ruber).
On the walk around to the next hide over looking the reed fringed pool I had some very good views of a couple of Cetti’s Warbler (Ruisenor Bastardo / Cettia cetti), Robin (Petirrrojo / Erithacus rubecula), Meadow Pipit (Bistita Común / Anthus pratensis), Sardinian Warbler (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala) and Zitting Cisticola (Buitrón / Cisticola juncidis).
From the hide Mallard (Anade Azulón / Anas platyrhynchos), Common Pochard (Porrón Europeo / Aythya ferina), Northern Shoveler (Cuchara Común / Anas clypeata), Eurasian Coot (Focha Común / Fulica atra), Common Moorhen (Gallineta Común / Gallinula Chloropus) and Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor).
Avocets (Avoceta Común/ Recurvirostra avosetta).
I missed the next hide out and had a look over the main pool, adding White-headed Duck (Malvasia Cabeciblanca / Oxyura leucocephala), Eurasian Teal (Cerceta Común / Anas crecca), a small group of five Avocets (Avoceta Común/ Recurvirostra avosetta) were roosting in the shallows and a single Greater Flamingo (Flamenco Común / Phoenicopterus ruber) eventually woke up for a few minutes before tucking it's head back under its wing again. Good numbers of Migrant Hawker ( Aeshna mixta) and Red-veined Darter (Sympetrum fonscolombii) dragonflies were still on the wing along with a couple of Long-tailed Blue (Lampides boeticus), Clouded Yellow (Colias crocea) and Bath White (Pontia daplidice) butterflies.
Other birds included Common Kestrel (Cernicalo Vulga / Falco tinnunculus), House Sparrow (Gorrión Común / Passer Domesticus), Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus), Greenfinch (Verderón Común / Carduelis chloris), Goldfinch (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis), Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata) and Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula).

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