Friday, 23 October 2015

Guadalhorce, Malaga Province.

A Spanish Lifer just off the reserve.

I dropped Jayne off in the Centre of Malaga for a few hours shopping whilst I went out to the Guadalhorce reserve meaning to have a look at the coast and the go on to the main reserve but I did not get that far. I parked and walked up the sloping track on to the bank at the seaward end of the Guadalmar urbanisation and put my bins up to check the first bird of the visit and got a bit of a shock. It was a small warbler and straight away I was aware of a bright eyestripe and a couple of obvious wing-bars, it was instantly identifed as my first Yellow-browed Warbler (Mosquitero Bilistado / Phylloscopus inornatus) in Spain. I wanted someone else to see the bird so I got on the mobile and contacted Andy Patterson and within about 15 minutes he was on site along with his cracking little dog Whisky but the bird had given me the slip by that point. We spent 10 minutes searching the Tamarisk trees and weedy scrub before we relocated the bird and had good views. We moved along the bank watching and after another 5 minutes or so we were amazed when a second bird flew in to a small bush near the first bird.We continued to watch the birds until we lost them in the weeds, Andy then headed off home and I continued on birding in the same area and had one or other of the birds another couple of times. 
Other species seen on the first couple of hundred meters of bank included Goldfinch (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis), Greenfinch (Verderón Común / Carduelis chloris), Robin (Petirrojo Europeo / Erithacus rubecula), Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor), Monk Parakeet (Cotorra Argentina / Myiopsitta monachus), Common Kestrel (Cernicalo Vulgar / Falco tinnunculus), Great Cormorant (Cormorán Grande / Phalacrocroax carbo), Crag Martin (Avión Roquero / Ptyonoprogne rupestris), Eurasian Coot (Focha Común / Fulica atra), Grey Heron (Garza Real / Ardea cinerea), Kingfisher (Martin Pescador / Alcedo atthis), Sardinian Warbler (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala), Common Sandpiper (Andarrios Chico / Actitis hypoleucos), Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata), Little Egret (Garceta Común / Egreeta garzetta), Zitting Cisticola (Buitrón / Cisticola juncidis), Common Whitethroat (Curruca Zarcera / Sylvia communis), Common Chiffchaff (Mosquitero Común / Phylloscopus collybita), Collared Dove (Tórtola Turca / Streptopelia decaocto), Black Redstart (Colirrojo Tizón / Phoenicurus ochruros), Northern Gannet (Alcatraz Atlántico / Morus bassanus), Sandwich Tern (Charrán Patinegro / Sterna sandvicensis), Yellow-legged (Gaviota Patiamarilla / Larus Michahellis) and Lesser Black-backed Gull (Gaviota Sombria / Larus fuscus).

Photographs from the top: 5x Yellow-browed Warbler (Mosquitero Bilistado / Phylloscopus inornatus) and Grey Heron (Garza Real / Ardea cinerea).

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