Monday 5 November 2018

Llanos de Antequera, Fuente de Piedra, Laguna Dulce, Malaga Province.

A muddy drive to the wet West.

Hoopoe (Abubilla / Upupa epops).
After some heavy rain over the last few day I decided to go and have a look around the wetlands and pools over the boarder in Malaga Province. On the way I picked up Western Cattle Egret (Garcilla Bueyera / Bubulcus ibis), Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor), Jackdaw (Grajilla / Corvus monedula), Woodpigeon (Paloma Torcaz / Columba palumbus), Goldfinch (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis) and White Wagtail (Lavandera Blanca / Montacilla alba).
My first stop was on the fields at Llanos de Antequera near the town of the same name where I was disappointed and alarmed to see just how much of this once nice open area of fields was now covered in the most intensive Olive planting I have ever seen.
Along the main track  I still found good numbers of Corn Buntings (Triguero / Emberiza calandra), Crested Lark (Cogujada / Galerida cristata), House Sparrow (Gorrión Común / Passer domesticus), Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula), Zitting Cisticola (Buitrón / Cisticola juncidis), Common Chiffchaff (Mosquitero Común / Phylloscopus collybita), Meadow Pipit (Bisbita Pratense / Anthus pratensis), Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata), Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus) and a Hoopoe (Abubilla / Upupa epops) which was feeding on the edge of the road.
Further along the road I added Common Kestrel (Cernicalo Vulgar / Falco tinnunculus), Common Chaffinch (Pinzón Vulgar / Fringilla coelebs), Skylark (Alondra Común / Alauda arvensis), Calandra Lark (Calandria / Melanocorypha calandra) and around the corner on the track towards the former Laguna Herrera I picked up Common Starling (Estornino Pinto / Sturnus vulgaris),
Black-headed (Gaviota Riedora / Larus ridibundus) and Lesser Black-backed Gulls (Gaviota Sombria / Larus fuscus), Iberian  Magpie (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cooki), Linnet (Pardillo Común / Carduelis cannabina) and quite a few Mallards (Anade Azulón / Anas platyrhynchos) on a flooded field.
I left the site and headed up the road to the woodlands near Humilladero where I parked and waited to see what came down and the answer was not a great deal but I did see several Common Crossbills (Piquituerto Común / Loxia curvirostra), Robin (Petirrojo Europeo / Erithacus rubecula), Raven (Cuervo / Corvus corax) and Black Redstart (Colirrojo Tizón / Phoenicurus ochruros).
I drove on along the side roads to Fuente de Piedra where I was pleased to see lots of water but there were very few birds and during the walk around the pools and from the mirador I only managed to add Snipe (Agachadiza Común / Gallinago gallinago), Eurasian Coot (Focha Común / Fulica atra),
Common Moorhen (Gallineta Común / Gallinulas chloropus), Northern Shoveler (Pato Cuchara / Anas clypeata), Eurasian Teal (Cerceta Común / Anas crecca), Little Grebe (Zampullín Común / Tachybaptus ruficollis), Black-winged Stilts (Ciguenela Común / Himantopus himantopus), 2x immature Greater Flamingo's (Flamenco Común / Phoenicopterus roseus) which were the only I saw, 2x Marsh Harrier (Aguilucho Lagunero Occidental / Circus aeruginosus), Sardinian Warbler (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala), Blackcap (Curruca Capirotada / Sylvia atricailla), 4x Common Cranes (Grulla Común / Grus grus) and 2x Shelducks (Tarro Blanco / Tadoma tadorna).
I drove around the roads to the west of the main lake along some very muddy roads, as I drove around towards the main road down to Laguna Dulce near Campillos I found a flock of 15 Avocets (Avoceta Común / Recurvirostra avosetta), quite a few more Common Cranes, Corn Buntings, Iberian / Southern Grey Shrike (Alcaudón Real Meridional / Lanius meridionalis), Dartford Warbler (Curruca Rabilarga / Sylvia undata), Common Buzzard (Busardo Ratonero / Buteo buteo), Collared Dove (Tórtola Turca / Streptopelia decaocto) and Mistle Thrush (Zorzal Charlo / Turdus viscivorus).
I drove to Laguna Dulce but again it was extreamly quiet but extreamly full and over flowig into the surrounding fields, the only species seen at the site were Eurasian Coot, Mallard, Black-winged Stilt and Common Pochard (Porrón Común / Aythya ferina). I drove back home via Antequera when the rain started to roll in.

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