Friday, 20 January 2017

Sierra Morena, Jaen Province.

A day looking for the rare Iberian Lynx and what a day !!!

Iberian Lynx (lince iberico/ Lynx pardina).
Steve and I were out just on dawn and drove out to the site where we were going to look for the Iberian Lynx (lince iberico/ Lynx pardina), on the way we picked up Red Deer (Ciervo común / Cervus elaphus) in the headlights as well as Rabbit (Conejo / Oryctolagus cuniculus).
Once we were on site at around 08:45 we set our selves up and started to find new species including Firecrest (Reyezuelo Listado / Regulus ignicapillus), Long-tailed (Mito / Aegithalos caudatus), Great (Carbonera Común / Parus major) and Blue Tits (Herrerillo Común / Parus caeruleus), Common Chaffinch (Pinzón Vulgar / Fringilla coelebs), Robin (Petirrojo Europeo / Erithacus rubecula), Iberian / Azure-winged (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cyanus) and Common Magpies (Urraca / Pica pica), Red-legged Partridge (Perdiz Roja / Alectoris rufa), Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula), Sardinian (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala) and Dartford Warbler (Curruca Rabilarga / Sylvia undata), Green Woodpecker (Pito Real / Picus viridis), Woodpigeon (Paloma Torcaz / Columba palumbus), Blue-rock (Roquero Solitario / Monticola solitarius) and Song Thrush (Zorzal Común / Turdus philomelos). 
Iberian Lynx (lince iberico/ Lynx pardina) checking the scent on the bush.
Just before 10:00 Steve had walked a couple of hundred meters along the road and I walked back a short way in the opposite direction to check a raucous group of Common Magpies when I picked up a male Lynx moving along anearby ridge. I managed to get Steves attention and then went to look for it again and made sure another group got onto it as well, I rushed back to the car grabbed my camera and locked it before returning to the rest of the group. What happened next was fantastic, the Lynx dropped out of sight over the ridge and then reappeared right next to us, no more than 10-15 meters away and walked past us up the hill, under the road and out onto a clear area above us where it checked a bush for scent for a few minutes, right out in the open before moving off into cover up the hill. The whole experiance was amazing and all 8 of us were over the moon with the views this stunnng animal allowed us.
Steve (AKA Kermit) photographng the Crag Martins.
After a while we decided to go down to the dam at the far end of the track but we did not see much apart from lots of Crag Martins (Avión Roquero / Ptyonoprogne rupestris) sat on the dam wall.
Red-legged Partridge (Perdiz Roja / Alectoris rufa).
Later we drove off the site seeing Fallow Deer (Gamo común / Dama dama) on the way and down to the Río Jándula where we ate a sandwich (a bit of a monster) we had got on the way at the picnic area near the road and added Nuthatch (Trepador Azul / Sitta europaea), Common Chiffchaff (Mosquitero Común / Phylloscopus collybita), Blackcap (Curruca Capirotada / Sylvia atricailla), Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor), White (Lavandera Blanca / Montacilla alba) and Grey Wagtails (Lavandera Cascadena / Motacilla cinerea) and Grey Heron (Garza Real / Ardea cinerea).
After finishing the Pork monster we drove to the dam and spent some time on the bridge nearby where we had great views of a very smart Otter (Nutria / Lutra lutra) along with both European Black (Buitre Negro / Aegypius monachus) and Griffon Vulture (Bultre Leonado / Gyps fulvus), a pair of soaring Spanish Imperial Eagles (Aguila Imperial Ibérica / Aguila adalberti) and a couple of Hawfinches (Picogordo / Coccotraustes coccotrauetes).
Around mid afternoon we decided to drive south and back home but not before we found a rather hairy looking Wild Boar (Jabalí / Felis silvestris) near the bridge.

Fallow Deer (Gamo común / Dama dama).
Río Jándula Dam.

Otter (Nutria / Lutra lutra).

Otter (Nutria / Lutra lutra).
Otter (Nutria / Lutra lutra).
Río Jándula.

Wild Boar (Jabalí / Felis silvestris).

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