Monday, 26 December 2011

Loja, Granada Province.

Royal British Leigion Walking Group.

Today was mainly a reason to walk off some of yesterdays exesses, eight members of the walking group met at the Bar Alamo in the San Francisco area of Loja for a coffee before we started our walk up to wards the railway station. Whist we were having our drinks a male Sparrowhawk (Gavilán Común / Accipiter nisus) was seen on one of the nearby roads chasing a group of House Sparrows (Gorrión Común / Passer Domesticus) around and right underneath one of the parked cars. On the walk up the hill out of town I also added a Short-toed Treecreeper (Agateador Común / Certhia brachydactyla) which was climbing the out side wall of one of the old engine sheds, Collared Dove (Tórtola Turca / Streptopelia decaocto), White Wagtail (Lavandera Blanca / Montacilla alba) and Sardinian Warbler (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala). Once at the top of the hill we skirted the lower slopes of Hacho and walked on towards the fish farms below the Frontil Industrial estate. Along here I had some fleeting glimpes of a male Blue Rock Thrush (Roquero Solitario / Monticola solitarius), Black Wheatear (Collalba Negra / Oenanthe leucura), Common Crossbill (Piquituerto Común / Loxia curvirostra), loads of Serins (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus) and Goldfinches (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis) and a pair of Thekla Larks (Cogujada Montesina / Galerida theklae). Along the track there were also several plants of the early flowering Wide-leaved Iris (Iris planifolia). Down by the fish farms there is a cristal clear stream which is packed full of Iberian Barble and smaller fish, birds included Common Moorhen (Gallineta Común / Gallinula Chloropus), Common Chiffchaff (Mosquitero Común / Phylloscopus collybita), Black Redstart (Colirrojo Tizón / Phoenicurus ochruros), Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula), Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor) and a couple of nicely plumaged Grey Wagtails (Lavandera Cascadena / Motacilla cinerea). We then walked out towards the Los Infiernos water Falls, crossing the fields we flushed up a huge flock of several hundred Goldfinches, Linnets and Serins plus a few Meadow Pipit (Bistita Común / Anthus pratensis). We then started to make our way back along some tracks from Esperanza via the old railway station to the Bar Alamo, on the way I added Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata), Common Chaffinch (Pinzón Vulgar / Fringilla coelebs) and Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra). We finished the walk with a very nice beer before heading back home.
Photographs from the top: Wide-leaved Iris (Iris planifolia) and the Walkers.

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