Tuesday 9 February 2016

Sierra de Loja and Huetor Fields, Granada Province.

A quick visit to the lower slopes of Sierra de Loja whilst Jayne was having lunch with a friend and a look at the fields on the way home.

Dartford (Curruca Rabilarga / Sylvia undata).
I spent a couple of hours on the low Northern slopes on the track to the small disused quarry, during this time I saw Iberian Magpie (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cyanus), Jackdaw (Grajilla / Corvus monedula), Red-billed Chough (Chova Piquirroja / Pyrrhocorax pyrrhocorax), Woodpigeon (Paloma Torcaz / Columba palumbus), Collared Dove (Tórtola Turca / Streptopelia decaocto), Dartford (Curruca Rabilarga / Sylvia undata) and Sardinian Warblers (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala), Black Redstart (Colirrojo Tizón / Phoenicurus ochruros), Blue-rock Thrush (Roquero Solitario / Monticola solitarius), Black Wheatear (Collalba Negra / Oenanthe leucura), Common Kestrel (Cernicalo Vulgar / Falco tinnunculus), Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata), Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor), Thekla Lark (Cogujada Montesina / Galerida theklae) and Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus). 
Giant Orchid (Himantoglossum robertiana).
On the way down to Loja I also found 8 spikes of Giant Orchids (Himantoglossum robertiana) and several Ophrys forestieri.
Little Bustards (Sisón Común / Tetrax tetrax).
I picked Jayne up and we headed back home, on the way we called in at the fields near Huétor Tajar and found the wintering Little Bustards (Sisón Común / Tetrax tetrax) x82, Northern Lapwing (Avefria Europea / Vanellus vanellus) x298, Skylark (Alondra Común / Alauda arvensis), Crested Lark (Cogujada / Galerida cristata), Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra) and Little Owl (Mochuelo Europeo / Athene noctua).
Little Bustards (Sisón Común / Tetrax tetrax).

Monday 8 February 2016

Sierra de Loja, Granada Province.

A couple of hour looking for Fieldfare and Alpine Accentors with Juan Pérez Contreras.

I met Juan at the Hotel Cortijo de Tajar near the A92 and from there we drove right the way over to the far side of the Sierra where we were hoping to find the wintering Fieldfares (Zorzal Real / Turdus pilaris) that I had seen a couple of weeks before mixed in with a flock of Mistle Thrushes (Zorzal Charlo / Turdus viscivorus). We parked and soon found some of the Mistle Thrushes but just 13 of them compaired to the 40+ I had seenand no Fieldfares. In the same area we did pick up Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula), Song Thrush (Zorzal Común / Turdus philomelos) x1, Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata), Black Redstart (Colirrojo Tizón / Phoenicurus ochruros), White Wagtail (Lavandera Blanca / Montacilla alba), Meadow Pipit (Bisbita Pratense / Anthus pratensis) and Red-legged Partridge (Perdiz Roja / Alectoris rufa).
Once back at the car we drove around to the far crags seeing Black Wheatear (Collalba Negra / Oenanthe leucura) x2 on the way. We parked and started to check the cliffs and bushes in the area and soon found the first 4 Alpine Accentors (Acentor Alpino / Prunella collaris) of the afternoon. We walked along the track going down into the valley nearby, on the way we saw Red-billed Chough (Chova Piquirroja / Pyrrhocorax pyrrhocorax), Jackdaw (Grajilla / Corvus monedula), Rock Bunting (Escribano Montesino / Emberiza cia), Rock Sparrow (Gorrión Chillón / Petronia petronia) x2, Blue-rock Thrush (Roquero Solitario / Monticola solitarius) x 1male, Robin (Petirrojo Europeo / Erithacus rubecula), Linnet (Pardillo Común / Carduelis cannabina), Common Chaffinch (Pinzón Vulgar / Fringilla coelebs), Goldfinch (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis), Common Chiffchaff (Mosquitero Común / Phylloscopus collybita), Blue Tit (Herrerillo Común / Parus caeruleus), Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor), Common Kestrel (Cernicalo Vulgar / Falco tinnunculus) and then right at the far point a flock of 26 more Alpine Accentors which flew over the near by crags and back up towards the car. We turned around and walked back seeing some of the Accentors again before dropping back down the hill picking up Little Owl (Mochuelo Europeo / Athene noctua), Thekla Lark (Cogujada Montesina / Galerida theklae), Hoopoe (Abubilla / Upupa epops) and Iberian Magpie (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cyanus).