Friday, 18 November 2016

Sierra de Loja, Loja, Granada Province.

A morning in the Sierra with the camera.

I drove up to the Loja entrance via the A92 and on the way started the day list with Stone Curlew (Alcaraván Común / Burhinus oedicnemus), Northern Lapwing (Avefria Europea / Vanellus vanellus), Collared Dove (Tórtola Turca / Streptopelia decaocto), Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor), Crested Lark (Cogujada / Galerida cristata), Great Cormorant (Cormorán Grande / Phalacrocroax carbo), Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata), Common Magpie (Urraca / Pica pica) and Song Thrush (Zorzal Común / Turdus philomelos).
Once I was up on the hill I headed straight for the far side where I was hoping to catch up with a few target species, on the way I saw Rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus), Red Squirrel (Ardilla común / Sclurus vulgaris), Long-tailed Tits (Mito / Aegithalos caudatus), Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus) and Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula). I started off by sitting along side one of the small animal watering pools to wait and see what came in to drink. The commonest species were Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra), Goldfinch (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis) and Linnet (Pardillo Común / Carduelis cannabina). There were also smaller numbers of Greenfinch (Verderón Común / Carduelis chloris), Mistle Thrush (Zorzal Charlo / Turdus viscivorus), Black Redstart (Colirrojo Tizón / Phoenicurus ochruros), Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata) and the odd Water (Bisbita Alpino / Anthus spinoletta) and Meadow Pipits (Bisbita Pratense / Anthus pratensis), Rock Sparrow (Gorrión Chillón / Petronia petronia), Rock Bunting (Escribano Montesino / Emberiza cia), Ring Ouzel ( Mirlo Capiblanco / Turdus torquatus) and a single Iberian / Southern Grey Shrike (Alcaudón Real Meridional / Lanius meridionalis) which sat on rocks on the far side of the pool. Whilst I was sat there I had a large male Spanish Ibex (Cabra pyreaica hispanica) wander across and a Large White (Pieris brassicae) fly through.
I moved up towards the rocky out crops above this site where I soon found good numbers of Redwings (Zorzal Alirrojo / Turdus illacus), Red-legged Partridges (Perdiz Roja / Alectoris rufa) and more Ring Ouzels along with Robin (Petirrojo Europeo / Erithacus rubecula), Common Chaffinch (Pinzón Vulgar / Fringilla coelebs) and up on the top of the rocks Black Wheatear (Collalba Negra / Oenanthe leucura), Blue-rock Thrush (Roquero Solitario / Monticola solitarius), Crag Martin (Avión Roquero / Ptyonoprogne rupestris), a female Northern Wheatear (Collalba Gris / Oenanthe oenanthe), 3x Alpine Accentors (Acentor Alpino / Prunella collaris) but they stayed right up on the tops and a Red Admiral (Vanessa atalanta) which was a suprise at 1400m in November.
I dropped back down the hill but picked up nothing new on the way but found Little Owl (Mochuelo Europeo / Athene noctua), White Wagtail (Lavandera Blanca / Montacilla alba), Sardinian Warbler (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala), Northern Lapwing (Avefria Europea / Vanellus vanellus) and Iberian / Azure-winged Magpie (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cyanus).

Photographs from the top: Ring Ouzel ( Mirlo Capiblanco / Turdus torquatus) x3, Water Pipit (Bisbita Alpino / Anthus spinoletta), Rock Bunting (Escribano Montesino / Emberiza cia), Rock Sparrow (Gorrión Chillón / Petronia petronia), Spanish Ibex (Cabra pyreaica hispanica), Meadow Pipit (Bisbita Pratense / Anthus pratensis), Linnet (Pardillo Común / Carduelis cannabina), Goldfinch (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis) and Little Owl (Mochuelo Europeo / Athene noctua).
 



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