Saturday 10 October 2015

Sierra de Rosario, Malaga Province.

A cool morning in the mountains with Sam, Sue and Jayne.

View from Mirador.
Sam, Sue, Jayne and I headed out for a walk in the hills above the town of Rosario, we drove up along a track to a view point above the town. Here we spent a while scrambling around amongst the rock and Sam spent some time climbing to the top and over them.
Sam in the rocks.
 In the area we saw European Plumbago (Plumbago europaea), Autumn Crocus (Crocus serotinus), Rusty-back Fern (Ceterach officinarum) and Torcal Toadflax (Linaria anticaria). Birds seen in the area included Rock Bunting (Escribano Montesino / Emberiza cia), Robin (Petirrojo Europeo / Erithacus rubecula), Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula), Blue Tit (Herrerillo Común / Parus caeruleus), Common Crossbill (Piquituerto Común / Loxia curvirostra), Coal Tit (Carbonero Garrapinos / Parus ater), Sardinian Warbler (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala), Blackcap (Curruca Capirotada / Sylvia atricailla), White Wagtail (Lavandera Blanca / Montacilla alba) and Mistle Thrush (Zorzal Charlo / Turdus viscivorus).
European Plumbago (Plumbago europaea).
We also had a single European Mantis (Mantis religiosa), Small  (Artogeia rapae) and Large Whites (Pieris brassicae), Wall Brown (Lasiommata megera) and Clouded Yellow (Colias corcea).
Torcal Toadflax (Linaria anticaria).
After a very pleasant couple of hours wandering around we dropped back down to Rosario where we went into Leo's bar and had some lunch, whilst we were sat out side we had a group of raptors pass over head including 3x Short-toed Eagles (Culebrera Europeo / Circaetus gallicus), 4x Common Buzzards (Busardo Ratonero / Buteo buteo), 2x Sparrowhawk (Gavilán Común / Accipiter nisus) and a Common Kestrel (Cernicalo Vulgar / Falco tinnunculus).
Fungi collector.
On the plants around the bar we saw a couple of Geranium Bronzes (Cacyreus marshalli) egg laying on pot plants.
Autumn Crocus (Crocus serotinus).
On our return to Huétor we spent another hour or so playing on the park in the town.

Sam in the park.

Sunday 4 October 2015

Cacín Valley, Huétor Fields and Zafarraya road, Granada Province.

A final days birding with Bob and a trip around the local area.
Day Six with Bob Ruvolo from New York, USA.

Black-bellied Sandgrouse (Ganga Ortega / Pterocles orientalis).
We started the day on the fields near to Moraleda where we quickly located the main target bird the Black-bellied Sandgrouse (Ganga Ortega / Pterocles orientalis) on a recently ploughed field amongst the Almond groves. In the same area we picked up Crested (Cogujada / Galerida cristata) and Thekla Larks (Cogujada Montesina / Galerida theklae), Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra), Northern Wheatear (Collalba Gris / Oenanthe oenanthe), Whinchat (Tarabilla Nortena / Saxicola rubetra) and Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata), Little Owl (Mochuelo Europeo / Athene noctua), Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor), Woodpigeon (Paloma Torcaz / Columba palumbus), Collared Dove (Tórtola Turca / Streptopelia decaocto), Jackdaw (Grajilla / Corvus monedula), Common Kestrel (Cernicalo Vulgar / Falco tinnunculus), Barn Swallow (Golondrina Común / Hirundo rustica) and Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus). 
Whinchat (Tarabilla Nortena / Saxicola rubetra).
Our next stop was on the fields near Huétor Tajar where we checked some ditches and Fields adding Snipe (Agachadiza Común / Gallinago gallinago), Western Cattle Egret (Garcilla Bueyera / Bubulcus ibis), Reed Warbler (Carricero Común / Acrocephalus scrpaceus), House Sparrow (Gorrión Común / Passer domesticus), Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula), Common (Urraca / Pica pica) and Iberian  Magpie (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cooki) and eventually the elusive flock of Little Bustards (Sisón Común / Tetrax tetrax).
Whinchat (Tarabilla Nortena / Saxicola rubetra).
The final couple of stops were along the Western side of the Sierra de Loja, the first was in some roadside fields where we found several spikes of Autumn Lady's Tresses's (Spiranthes spiralis). A little further along the road just past Zafarraya we had a walk along the disused railway line and picked up Red-billed Chough (Chova Piquirroja / Pyrrhocorax pyrrhocorax), Rock Bunting (Escribano Montesino / Emberiza cia), Blue-rock Thrush (Roquero Solitario / Monticola solitarius), Black Wheatear (Collalba Negra / Oenanthe leucura), Black Redstart (Colirrojo Tizón / Phoenicurus ochruros), Crag Martin (Avión Roquero / Ptyonoprogne rupestris) and Spanish Ibex (Cabra pyreaica hispanica).