Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Malaga Rivers, Malaga Province.

Another day out and about with Steve while the girls were shopping.

Jayne, Lynn, Steve and I headed off down to Malaga where Jayne and Lynn were going to spend the day having a wander around the city whilst Steve and I were checking out some of the rivers to the North. Our first stop was on a short stretch of river which we had visited last year and had great success at but things had changed, the flow of water was reduced and there was a lot more marginal vegetation. We spent quite a while searching the area and saw good numbers of Scarlet Darters (Crocothemis erythraea), Epaulet Skimmers (Orthetrum chrysostigma), Orange-winged Dropwing (Trithemis kirbyi), Blue / Common Emperor (Anax imperator), Red-veined Darter (Sympetrum fonscolombii), a couple of Small Pincertail (Onychogomphus forcipatus), Iberian Blue-tails (Ischnura graellsii), Copper Demoiselle (Calopteryx haemorrhoidalis) and a new species for the site for me a Black Percher (Diplacodes lefebvrii). All the time we were at the site we could hear the rattling of a flock of Common Waxbills (Estrilda Ondulada / Estrilda astrild) along with Barn (Golondrina Común / Hirundo rustica) and Red-rumped Swallow (Golondrina Dáurica / Hirudo daurica), House Martin (Avión Común / Delichon urbica), Nightingale (Ruisenor Común / Luscinia megarhynchos), Grey Wagtail (Lavandera Cascadena / Motacilla cinerea), Green Sandpiper (Andarrios Grande / Tringa ochropus), Pallid Swift (Vencejo Pálido /Apus pallidus), Reed (Carricero Común / Acrocephalus scrpaceus) and Sardinian Warblers (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala) and Spotted Flycatcher (Papamoscas Gris / Muscicapa striata).
After a couple hours Steve was down river a bit and I had moved slightly further upstream again to where we had seen some good species last year when a male Ringed Cascader (Zygonyx torridus) flew in and did two passes infront of me before heading off down stream in pursuit of a female and was not seen again. A while later we decided to head slightly further north to the Guadalhorce near Pizarra, we walked down stream to a fast flowing section and quickly found our second Cascader of the day which was patrolling a short section of rapids but access was difficult so we moved across the rapids and made our way down stream on the calmer western bank. Along here we saw Violet Dropwing (Trithemis annulata), Small Pincertail (Onychogomphus forcipatus), Scarlet Darters, Orange-winged Dropwing, Epaulet Skimmers, Blue-eye (Erythromma lindenii) and Black-tailed Skimmer (Orthetrum cancellatum). We eventually found a gap in the tamarisks through to where the Cascader was patrolling and managed to get superb views and Steve managed a few flight shots.
Our last stop of the day was at the junction between the largely dried up Rio Grande and the Rio Guadalhorce where we just had the time for a quick look along the short shallow arm of the Grande, we had good views of most of the species we had already seen and added Long Skimmer (Orthetrum trinacria), White Featherleg (Platycnemis latipes) and Small Red-eye (Erythromma viridulum) to the dragon list and Zitting Cisticola (Buitrón / Cisticola juncidis), European Bee-eater (Abejaruco Común / Merops apiaster), Booted Eagle (Aguililla Calzada / Hieraaetus pennatus), Cattle  (Garcilla Bueyera / Bubulcus ibis) and Little Egrets (Garceta Común / Egreeta garzetta), Grey Heron (Garza Real / Ardea cinerea), Hoopoe (Abubilla / Upupa epops), Little Ringed Plover (Chorlitejo Chico / Charadrius dubius), Southern Grey Shrike (Alcaudón Real Meridional / Lanius meridionalis) and White Wagtail (Lavandera Blanca / Montacilla alba) to the bird list before picking the girls up in Malaga and heading home.

Photographs from the top: Epaulet Skimmers (Orthetrum chrysostigma), Bee Species, Scarlet Darters (Crocothemis erythraea) and Iberian Blue-tails (Ischnura graellsii).

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