Sunday, 22 February 2015

Padul Wetlands, Granada Province.

A quicker visit than planned due to the wind.

Jayne and I drove over to Padul to have a walk around the reserve, when we left home the sun was out and all was warm and calm. By the time we reached the reserve it was blowing one hell of a gale and it was a very cold wind coming straight down off the snow covered Sierra Nevada. On the way over I picked up a few species including Common Kestrel (Cernicalo Vulgar / Falco tinnunculus), Common Magpie (Urraca / Pica pica), Iberian Magpie (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cyanus), Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor), Mistle Thrush (Zorzal Charlo / Turdus viscivorus), Jackdaw (Grajilla / Corvus monedula) and Sparrowhawk (Gavilán Común / Accipiter nisus).
Once we parked we had a walk from the centre to the woodland feeding station where we immediately found the wanted species a Dunnock (Acentor Común / Prunella modularis) an incommon winter visitor this far south and even rare breeding species with just a few pars staying here in the Sierra Nevada. Also seen were a few Siskin (Lúgano / Carduelis spinus), Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus), Greenfinch (Verderón Común / Carduelis chloris), Goldfinch (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis), Common Chaffinch (Pinzón Vulgar / Fringilla coelebs), Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula), Song Thrush (Zorzal Común / Turdus philomelos) and Woodpigeon (Paloma Torcaz / Columba palumbus).
We continued along the track out to the lake and around the short loop, we wanted to go further but the wind was just howling through the area and it made birding hard going and it was just unpleasant.
Along the track and by the lake we added Blackcap (Curruca Capirotada / Sylvia atricailla), Common Chiffchaff (Mosquitero Común / Phylloscopus collybita), Mallard (Anade Azulón / Anas platyrhynchos), Eurasian Coot (Focha Común / Fulica atra), Common Moorhen (Gallineta Común / Gallinulas chloropus), Great Cormorant (Cormorán Grande / Phalacrocroax carbo), Crag Martin (Avión Roquero / Ptyonoprogne rupestris) and a Peregrine Falcon (Halcón Peregrino / Falco peregrinus) which made a couple of attempts to take one of the Martins but failed due to the wind. 
On our way back to the car we came through a nice little dell where the wind had no effect and as we got there the sun came out and it was quite warm which bought out a few butterflies including 5+ Small Whites (Artogeia rapae), a single Large White (Pieris brassicae) and 3 Speckled Woods (Pararge aegeria). We got to the centre where I dropped off a bag of Mist nets that Bob Wright had kindly let me have for the reserve to use before heading home via Melchor bar for a drink to warm us up.

Photographs: 2x Blackcap (Curruca Capirotada / Sylvia atricailla).

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