Thursday, 6 August 2015

El Molinillo and Sierra Huétor, Granada Province.

A day with Steve and Lynn in the superb Sierra de Huétor.

Lynn, Steve and I headed out to the east and into the hills to the North of Granada, our first stop was at El Molinillo and along the Prado Negro stream. This is a cracking spot and we spent most of the day there, on the first stretch we soon found Large Pincertails (Onychogomphus uncatus) x2M-4F, Common Golden Ringed Dragonfly (Cordulegaster boltonii subsp algirica) x4M, Beautiful Demoiselle (Calopteryx virgo) x3M-5F, adult and immature Black Redstarts (Colirrojo Tizón / Phoenicurus ochruros), Jay (Arrendajo / Garrulus glandarius), Common Magpie (Urraca / Pica pica), Crag Martin (Avión Roquero / Ptyonoprogne rupestris), Red-rumped Swallow (Golondrina Dáurica / Hirudo daurica), Rock Bunting (Escribano Montesino / Emberiza cia), Blue Tit (Herrerillo Común / Parus caeruleus), Short-toed Treecreeper (Agateador Común / Certhia brachydactyla) and Bonelli's Warbler (Mosquitero Papialbo / Phylloscopus bonelli). Out on the fields next to the river we started to find a good selection of butterflies including Tree (Neohipparchia statilinus), Striped (Pseudotergumia fidia) and Common Graylings (Hipparchia semele), Silver-spotted Skipper (Hesperia comma), Common / Southern Blue (Icaro (Dos Puntos) / Polyommatus icarus / celina), Southern Brown Argus (Aricia cramera), Large White (Pieris brassicae), Scarce Swallowtail (Chupaleches / Iphiclides podalirius feisthameli), Dark-green  (Argynnis aglaja) and High Brown Fritillaries (Fabriciana adippe), Iberian Marbled White (Medioluto Ibérica / Melanargia lachesis), Spanish Chalk-hill Blue (Polyommatus albicans) and Purple Hairstreak (Quercusia Quercus). During the morning we worked our way along the river for the huge distance of about 900meters, we covered such a short distance due to the amount of species we were seeing and trying to photograph. The species seen included Southern Skimmer (Orthetrum brunneum) x3M, Western Spectre (Boyeria Irene) x1M, Copper Demoiselle (Calopteryx haemorrhoidalis) x4M-3F, Adonis Blue (Niña Celeste / Lysandra bellargus), Clouded Yellow (Colias Común / Colias corcea), Berger's Clouded Yellow (Colias de Berger / Colias alfacariensis), a cracking Wood White (Leptidea sinapis) which I had to lye in the river to photograph, Cleopatra (Cleopatra / Gonepteryx cleopatra), Small Heath (Coenonympha pamphilus F lyllus), Gatekeeper (Pyronia tithonus), Southern Gatekeeper (Pyronia cecilia), Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus), Booted Eagle (Aguililla Calzada / Hieraaetus pennatus), Barn Swallow (Golondrina Común / Hirundo rustica), Wren (Chochin / Troglodytes troglodytes) and Long-tailed Tit (Mito / Aegithalos caudatus). We had some lunch back at the car before crossing the road and checking the meadows there adding Lang's Short-tailed Blue (Leptotes pirithous), Speckled Wood (Pararge aegeria), Meadow Brown (Maniola jurtina ssp hispulla), Small Copper (Lycaena phlaeas), Small White (Artogeia rapae), Wall Brown (Lasiommata megera), Sage Skipper (Muschampia proto), Great Tit (Carbonera Común / Parus major), Woodpigeon (Paloma Torcaz / Columba palumbus), Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula) and Sardinian Warbler (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala).
Once we had finished on the meadows we headed back a short way towards Granada on a minor road and stopped in a large area of Pines next to the motorway and checked the track sides. Whilst we were there we were questioned by one of the rangers about what we were doing (first time in years) and once he was happy with things we spent quite a while talking about cameras and he showed us loads of his shots on his phone. We eventually go back to searching through the site for insects and Steve came up with a cracking Stick Insect (Pijnackeria hispanica) at only the second site that I had seen them, in the same area we had European Mantis (Mantis religiosa), Southern Brown Argus, Common / Southern Blue,  several Wasp species including Prionyx kirbii, Sriped Shieldbug (Graphosoma italicum), Green Woodpecker (Pito Real / Picus viridis), Jay (Arrendajo / Garrulus glandarius) and Crested Tit (Herrerillo Capuchino / Parus cristatus).
The day had again flown by so we heade back in to the house for another very pleasant evening on the terrace.

Photographs from the top: Large Pincertails (Onychogomphus uncatus), Purple Hairstreak (Quercusia Quercus), Wood White (Leptidea sinapis), Beautiful Demoiselle (Calopteryx virgo), Tree Grayling (Neohipparchia statilinus), Stick Insect (Pijnackeria hispanica), Prionyx kirbii and 3x unidentified at this point.



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