Monday, 21 July 2014

Rivers above Malaga, Malaga Province.

A last minute visit to Malaga area.

Jayne and I got the tasks for the day sorted earlier than expected so we made our way down to Malaga where I dropped Jayne off at the Larios centre. Chika and I headed off up the main road passing Rio Grande stopping at a short stretch of river where I soon found several Epaulet Skimmers (Orthetrum chrysostigma), Broad Scarlets (Crocothemis erythraea), Violet Dropwings (Trithemis annulata), Red-veined Darter (Sympetrum fonscolombii), Orange-winged Dropwing (Trithemis kirbyi), a female Small Pincertail (Onychogomphus forcipatus), a couple of Blue / Common Emperors (Anax imperator), a nice male Lesser Emperor (Anax parthenope), loads of Iberian Blue-tails (Ischnura graellsii) and a single male Copper Demoiselle (Calopteryx haemorrhoidalis). Birds included Zitting Cisticola (Buitrón / Cisticola juncidis), Yellow Wagtail (Lavandera Boyera / Motacilla flava iberiae), Woodpigeon (Paloma Torcaz / Columba palumbus), Turtle Dove (Tórtola Europea / Streptopelia turtur), Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor), Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus), Sardinian Warbler (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala), Barn (Golondrina Común / Hirundo rustica) and Red-rumped Swallows (Golondrina Dáurica / Hirudo daurica), House Martin (Avión Común / Delichon urbica), House Sparrow (Gorrión Común / Passer domesticus) and Common Waxbill (Estrilda Ondulada / Estrilda astrild).
From here I headed slightly further North and had a look along the Ro Guadalhorce near Pizarra, there was more water in this section of the river than I have seen in the passed so I could only go down stream. On the patches of floating water weed I saw a couple of single and several tandem pairs of Blue-eye / Goblet-marked Damselfly (Erythromma lindenii), a male Black-tailed Skimmer (Orthetrum cancellatum) and on the rocks nearby a single male Small Pincertail. About 50 meters below the railway brigde there were some nice looking rapids where I was hoping to find a Ringed Cascader (Zygonyx torridus) but as with all the sites where I looked for this species I could not find any sign. On some small pools between the faster water I found more Broad Scarlet´s, Violet and Orange Winged Dropwings, Iberian Bluetails and Common Blue Damselfly (Enallagma cyathinerum) along with Little Ringed Plover (Chorlitejo Chico / Charadrius dubius), Common Sandpiper (Andarrios Chico / Actitis hypoleucos), Reed Warbler (Carricero Común / Acrocephalus scrpaceus) and in the air several Common Kestrels (Cernicalo Vulgar / Falco tinnunculus).
Heading back to the main road I stopped by the Arroyo de Cañas but did not find any thing new so I carried on down to the Rio Grande and checked out the normal stretch by the bridge and down at the point where it joins the Rio Guadalhorce. On themain river which was dry in places there were a few Cattle Egrets (Garcilla Bueyera / Bubulcus ibis) feeding amongst a large flock of goats and several Little Egrets (Garceta Común / Egreeta garzetta) fishing in the smaller pools along with singles of both Grey (Garza Real / Ardea cinerea) and Squacco Herons (Garcilla Cangrejera / Ardeola ralloides), Hoopoe (Abubilla / Upupa epops), White Wagtail (Lavandera Blanca / Montacilla alba), Little Ringed (Chorlitejo Chico / Charadrius dubius) and Kentish Plovers (Chorlitejo Patinegro / Charadrius alexandrinus). I then moved a short way down the river to the junction where I saw several Black-winged Stilts (Ciguenela Común / Himantopus himantopus), European Bee-eaters (Abejaruco Común / Merops apiaster), Cetti's Warbler (Ruisenor Bastardo / Cettia cetti), Common Moorhen (Gallineta Común / Gallinulas chloropus) and House Martin (Avión Común / Delichon urbica).
Dragonflies included a very nice male Long Skimmer (Orthetrum trinacria) along with Lesser Emperor, Broad Scarlet, White Featherleg (Platycnemis latipes) and a Mediterranean skipper (Gegenes nostrodamus).

Photographs from the top: Black-winged Stilts (Ciguenela Común / Himantopus himantopus), female Small Pincertail (Onychogomphus forcipatus), Epaulet Skimmers (Orthetrum chrysostigma), Mediterranean skipper (Gegenes nostrodamus), Hoopoe (Abubilla / Upupa epops) and  Little Egret (Garceta Común / Egreeta garzetta).

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