Wednesday, 10 August 2016

Sierra Nevada, Granada Province.

A day in the mountains for Steve and I whilst the girls go shopping in Granada City.

We made our way up the main road heading for the Botanical Gardens but made a quick stop in a road side layby for a pale phase Booted Eagle (Aguililla Calzada / Hieraaetus pennatus) which was soaring over the valley. In the same area we had Bonelli's Warbler (Mosquitero Papialbo / Phylloscopus bonelli), Common Crossbill (Piquituerto Común / Loxia curvirostra), European Bee-eater (Abejaruco Común / Merops apiaster), House Martin (Avión Común / Delichon urbica) and a Wall Brown (Lasiommata megera).
We arrived at the gardens and walked through to the pool at the bottom and then up through the pine woods, on the way we saw but did not have great of Common Crossbill, Bonelli's Warbler, Crested (Herrerillo Capuchino / Parus cristatus), Coal (Carbonero Garrapinos / Parus ater), Blue  (Herrerillo Común / Parus caeruleus) and Great Tits (Carbonera Común / Parus major), Crag Martin (Avión Roquero / Ptyonoprogne rupestris), Alpine (Vencejo Real / Apus melba) and Pallid Swifts (Vencejo Pálido /Apus pallidus), Rock Bunting (Escribano Montesino / Emberiza cia), Short-toed Treecreeper (Agateador Común / Certhia brachydactyla) and in a stack together soaring over the trees 2x Short-toed Eagles (Culebrera Europeo / Circaetus gallicus), 1x Booted Eagle and 2x Bonelli's Eagles (Aguila-azor / Hieraetus faciatus). The longer we were at this site the thicker the cloud got so butterflies were few and far between but we did manage to find Bath White (Blanqiverdosa / Pontia daplidice), Tree (Neohipparchia statilinus) and Great Banded Graylings (Rey Moro / Kanetisa circe), Southern Mountain Argus (Aricia montensis), Common / Southern Blue (Polyommatus icarus / celina), Small Heath (Coenonympha pamphilus F lyllus) and Small Copper (Lycaena phlaeas). We also had a very smart Long-horn Beetle named Chlorophorus trifasciatus.
The cloud was by now quite thick so we decieded to drop down a long way and in to the genil Valley where we checked a site along the river for butterflies and dragons. Straight away we found a rather old female Black-tailed Skimmer (Orthetrum cancellatum) which was soon followed by the first of quite a few Common Golden Ringed Dragonfly (Cordulegaster boltonii subsp algirica), Southern Skimmer (Orthetrum brunneum) as well as Mediterranean Shieldbug (Carpocoris mediterraneus), False Mallow / Mallow Skipper (Carcharodus tripolinus / alceae), Lang's Short-tailed (Leptotes pirithous), Common / Southern (Polyommatus icarus / celina) and Long-tailed Blues (Lampides boeticus) and Small White (Pieris rapae). On the river we had a Dipper (Mirlo Acuático / Cinclus cinclus) and several Grey Wagtails (Lavandera Cascadena / Motacilla cinerea) and further up stream single males of Violet Dropwing (Trithemis annulata), Blue / Common Emperor (Anax imperator) and Beautiful Demoiselle (Calopteryx virgo).
 Later we went down into the City to meet the girls before heading home and having a nice evening on the terrace.

Photographs from the top: Booted Eagle (Aguililla Calzada / Hieraaetus pennatus), Chlorophorus trifasciatus, Southern Mountain Argus (Aricia montensis), female Black-tailed Skimmer (Orthetrum cancellatum), False Mallow / Mallow Skipper (Carcharodus tripolinus / alceae), 2x Common Golden Ringed Dragonfly (Cordulegaster boltonii subsp algirica) and a male  Beautiful Demoiselle (Calopteryx virgo).

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