Wednesday, 8 January 2014

Coin, El Faro and Guadalhorce, Granada Province.

An Orchid hunt in the woods and a couple of sites on the coast.

Jayne spent a few hours around the sales whilst I headed off for a look around the pine woods up near Coin for Ophrys Malacitana at the site where Michael Lowe and Ian Phillips first described it. I spent quite a while searching the area but only found three plants in flower but whilst I was there I also saw Coal (Carbonero Garrapinos / Parus ater), Crested (Herrerillo Capuchino / Parus cristatus), Great (Carbonera Común / Parus major), Long-tailed (Mito / Aegithalos caudatus) and Blue Tits (Herrerillo Común / Parus caeruleus), Common Crossbill (Piquituerto Común / Loxia curvirostra) and Short-toed Treecreeper (Agateador Común / Certhia brachydactyla).
From here I headed back down to the coast and visited the sea watch hide at El Faro, just as I arrived Micky Smith turned up as well so we spent some time scanning the sea but things were quiet and we only managed to pick up Great Cormorant (Cormorán Grande / Phalacrocroax carbo), Northern Gannet (Alcatraz Atlántico / Morus bassanus), Sandwich Tern (Charrán Patinegro / Sterna sandvicensis), Lesser Black-backed (Gaviota Sombria / Larus fuscus), Yellow-legged (Gaviota Patiamarilla / Larus Michahellis), Mediterranean (Gaviota Cabecinegra / Larus melanocephalus) and Black-headed Gull (Gaviota Riedora / Larus ridibundus). After a while we had a walk along the road side scanning the rocks for waders and saw several Ruddy Turnstones (Vuelvepiedras Común / Arenaria interpres), Sanderling (Correlimos Tridáctilo / Calidris alba), Ringed (Chorlitejo Grande / Charadrius hiaticula) and Kentish Plovers (Chorlitejo Patinegro / Charadrius alexandrinus) along with Little (Garceta Común / Egreeta garzetta) and Cattle Egrets (Garcilla Bueyera / Bubulcus ibis), Common Chiffchaff (Mosquitero Común / Phylloscopus collybita), White Wagtail (Lavandera Blanca / Montacilla alba), Greenfinch (Verderón Común / Carduelis chloris), Goldfinch (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis) and Black Redstart (Colirrojo Tizón / Phoenicurus ochruros). We reached the large monument rock and turn around but did not add anything on the way back to the hide where we spent a while longer watching the sea before Micky headed off home and I went back to meet Jayne and have some luch before heading for Malaga City.
I again dropped Jayne off at the shopping Centre and headed to Guadalhorce and went straight on to the main reserve and around to the hide over looking the main pool. The commonest species by far were Great Cormorant and Grey Heron (Garza Real / Ardea cinerea), these were seen along with Mallard (Anade Azulón / Anas platyrhynchos), Common Pochard (Porrón Común / Aythya ferina), Northern Shoveler (Pato Cuchara / Anas clypeata), Eurasian Coot (Focha Común / Fulica atra), Common Moorhen (Gallineta Común / Gallinulas chloropus), Black-necked (Zampullín Cullinegro / Podiceps nigricollis) and Little Grebes (Zampullín Común / Tachybaptus ruficollis), Zitting Cisticola (Buitrón / Cisticola juncidis), Snipe  (Agachadiza Común / Gallinago gallinago), Greater Flamingo (Flamenco Común / Phoenicopterus roseus), Monk Parakeet (Cotorra Argentina / Myiopsitta monachus) and out in the distance I counted 5 Booted Eagles (Aguililla Calzada / Hieraaetus pennatus) soaring on a distant thermal. From here I moved on and had a quick look at the beach but things were quiet, I just saw several more Northern Gannets and all the expected Gulls. I next visited the small hide over looking the long pool, whilst I was here I had a chat with another couple of birders while we checked what was on the water. There were small numbers of White-headed Duck (Malvasia Cabeciblanca / Oxyura leucocephala), Little Grebes, Cetti's Warbler (Ruisenor Bastardo / Cettia cetti), Robin (Petirrojo Europeo / Erithacus rubecula), Blackcap (Curruca Capirotada / Sylvia atricailla), House
Sparrow (Gorrión Común / Passer domesticus) and best of all was a small flock of 5 Penduline Tits (Pájaro Moscón / Remiz pendulinus). I then made my way back around to the car adding Common Kestrel (Cernicalo Vulgar / Falco tinnunculus), Jackdaw (Grajilla / Corvus monedula), Monk Parakeet (Cotorra Argentina / Myiopsitta monachus) and Song Thrush (Zorzal Común / Turdus philomelos). Once I got back to the car I made my way back into the city and Jayne and I headed home.

Photographs from the top: Ophrys Malacitana, Ruddy Turnstones (Vuelvepiedras Común / Arenaria interpres), Common Chiffchaff (Mosquitero Común / Phylloscopus collybita), 3x immature Greater Flamingo's (Flamenco Común / Phoenicopterus roseus), Little Grebe (Zampullín Común / Tachybaptus ruficollis) and male Northern Shoveler (Pato Cuchara / Anas clypeata).

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