Friday, 10 May 2013

Huétor Fields and Sierra de Loja, Granada Province.

Another successful Spring walk for GRANADA WILDLIFE.

I started the day off by having a quick look on the fields North of Huétor Tájar, I parked behind the bar where I parked beside the river and scanned the fields on the opposite bank and along the margins of the Arroyo where I soon located Little Ringed Plover (Chorlitejo Chico / Charadrius dubius), Common Magpie (Urraca / Pica pica), Yellow Wagtail (Lavandera Boyera / Motacilla flava iberiae), Common Swift (Vencejo Común / Apus apus), Nightingale (Ruisenor Común / Luscinia megarhynchos), House Sparrow (Gorrión Común / Passer domesticus), Hoopoe (Abubilla / Upupa epops) and Crested Lark (Cogujada / Galerida cristata). I then went back to the bar and had a coffee before meeting Mike Loombe and his wife and heading off to the meeting point at the Abades service area on the A92. Pretty soon there we twelve of us ready to head up the mountain, our first stop was at the turning point where we parked and had a walk up towards the disused quarry at the end of the narrow track. We started our walk with views of Azure-winged Magpie (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cyanus), House Martin (Avión Común / Delichon urbica), Coal Tit (Carbonero Garrapinos / Parus ater), Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula) and Long-tailed Tit (Mito / Aegithalos caudatus). In amongst the mediterranian scrub we started to find lots of wild flowers and orchids including Mirror (Ophrys speculum subsp speculum), Yellow Bee (Ophrys lutea) and Pyramidal Orchids (Orquidea Pyramidal / Anacamptis pyramidalia), Chickweed (Cerastium boissieri), Common Grape Hyacinth (Muscari neglectum), Star of Bethlehem (Ornithogalum umbellatum), Viola dementria, White Rockrose (Helianthemum apenninum), Southern Knapweed (Centaurea pullata ssp pullata), Rusty-back Fern (Ceterach officinarum), Mediterranean Catchfly (Silene colorata), Grey-leaved Cistus (Cistus albidus), Common Snapdragon (Antirrhinum major), Common Stork's-bill (Erodium cicutarium) and some going over Southern Wild Tulip (Tulipa sylvestris ssp. australis). Once we reached the quarry we started to hear a Rock Bunting (Escribano Montesino / Emberiza cia) but it took quite a while to locate it but eventually we saw it, also seen were Wren (Chochin / Troglodytes troglodytes), Sardinian Warbler (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala), Jackdaw (Grajilla / Corvus monedula) and a distant Common Kestrel (Cernicalo Vulgar / Falco tinnunculus). Also on the crag we had nice views of three Spanish Ibex (Cabra pyreaica hispanica) but we had much better views of four animals on our walk back towards the car. We also added a male Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata), Greenfinch (Verderón Común / Carduelis chloris), Linnet (Pardillo Común / Carduelis cannabina), Barn Swallow (Golondrina Común / Hirundo rustica), Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus), Woodpigeon (Paloma Torcaz / Columba palumbus) and back at the car we saw a distant soaring Common Buzzard (Busardo Ratonero / Buteo buteo). We all then jumped back into the cars and headed for the crags area, we parked and soon added Red-legged Partridge (Perdiz Roja / Alectoris rufa), a singing Spectacled Warbler (Curruca Tomillera / Sylvia conspicillata), a fine male Black Wheatear (Collalba Negra / Oenanthe leucura), Little Owl (Mochuelo Europeo / Athene noctua), another male Stonechat, several more Jackdaws and our first Red-billed Choughs (Chova Piquirroja / Pyrrhocorax pyrrhocorax). We had a look at the fossels of what have been described as Oyster type shells where we had a nice male Iberian Wall Lizard (Podarcis hispanica). We moved on towards Charc del Negro but we did make several stops on the way and had good views of Black-eared Wheatears (Collalba Rubia / Oenanthe hispanica), several Griffon Vultures (Bultre Leonado / Gyps fulvus), 22+ Honey Buzzards (Aberjero Europeo / Pernis apivorus), Thekla Lark (Cogujada Montesina / Galerida theklae), Crag Martin (Avión Roquero / Ptyonoprogne rupestris) and a very nice male Black Redstart (Colirrojo Tizón / Phoenicurus ochruros). We parked just below Charca del Negro as the track is a bit rough and walked up to the pools which were both covered in carpet of Pond Water Crowsfoot (Ranunculus Peltatus), on the margins there were saw a good number of Linnets (Pardillo Común / Carduelis cannabina), along with a pair of Rock Sparrows (Gorrión Chillón / Petronia petronia) and several more Rock Buntings. In and around the pool we saw several Sharp-ribbed Salamanders (Pleurodeles waltl), a few male Red-veined Darters (Sympetrum fonscolombii) and a single male Blue / Common Emperor (Anax imperator). From here we started to walk off around towards the goat cave and at the first crag we had cracking views of both Blue (Roquero Solitario / Monticola solitarius) and Rufous-tailed Rock Thrushes (Roquero Roja / Monticola saxatilis) display flying from the highest point. Here we also saw more Black Redstarts, Crag Martins, Rock Buntings and Rock Sparrows. Continuing on we added a few more wild flowers to the list including the very nice Erodium cheilanthifolium, Mediterranean Kidney Vetch (Anthyllis vulneraria), Cynoglossum cheirifolium, Saxifraga Camposii and an Iberian Worm Lizard (Blanus cinereus). Some of the group had already started the walk back to the car and on down the hill and once we had had a look at the cave the rest of the group started the journey back down to the service area. On my way down I managed to get a few shots of the birds before heading off home.

Photographs from the top: Red-legged Partridge (Perdiz Roja / Alectoris rufa), Oyster type shells fossel, Black-eared Wheatears (Collalba Rubia / Oenanthe hispanica), Panoptes Blue (Pseudophilotes panoptes), Erodium cheilanthifolium and Iberian Worm Lizard (Blanus cinereus).

1 comment:

nic.b van es said...

dit is toch wel heel erg genieten.