Wednesday 18 November 2020

Sierra de Loja and Huétor Fields, Granada Province, Spain.

Up the Hill and later down on the fields.

Sun Rise over the Asparagus fields near Huétor.
I started the day by driving to the far side of the Sierra which is surprisingly well inside my Municipal area I am pleased to say. 
Rock Sparrows (Gorrión Chillón / Petronia petronia).

When I got there I parked by one of the pools and waited to see what came in, first to arrive were lots of Goldfinch (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis), followed by several Corn Buntings (Triguero / Emberiza calandra) and Rock Sparrows (Gorrión Chillón / Petronia petronia), Black Redstart (Colirrojo Tizón / Phoenicurus ochruros), Meadow Pipit (Bisbita Pratense / Anthus pratensis), Thekla Lark (Cogujada Montesina / Galerida theklae), Rock Bunting (Escribano Montesino / Emberiza cia) and Greenfinch (Verderón Común / Carduelis chloris).
Greenfinch (Verderón Común / Carduelis chloris).
I later moved up to the Hawthorn woods where I was surprised to find around 15
Redwings (Zorzal Alirrojo / Turdus illacus) and a couple of Ring Ouzel (Mirlo Capiblanco / Turdus torquatus) as there were no berries on the Hawthorns (Crataegus monogyna).
Goldfinch (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis).
Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra).
In the same area I also found
Red-billed Chough (Chova Piquirroja / Pyrrhocorax pyrrhocorax), Crag Martin (Avión Roquero / Ptyonoprogne rupestris), Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata), Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula), Rock Dove (Paloma Bravía / Columba livia), Red-legged Partridge (Perdiz Roja / Alectoris rufa) and then I heard a calling Alpine Accentor (Acentor Alpino / Prunella collaris) which flew over me.
Alpine Accentor (Acentor Alpino / Prunella collaris).
I then heard several more Accentors flying in and then I saw them land on the cliff face just above me so I walked up the slope and I was soon eye tot eye with 8 of these stunning winter visitors to the Sierra.
Alpine Accentor (Acentor Alpino / Prunella collaris).
I managed to get some shots of one of the birds as it approached me before it dropped off behind a large bolder and then all 8 of the birds flew off. I walked back down to the track and then carried on a little further before turning around and making my way back to the car.
Common Chaffinch (Pinzón Vulgar / Fringilla coelebs).
I dropped back down the mountain, on my way I saw a 
Weasel (Mustela nivalis) which was hunting Meadow Pipits amongst the rocks, Common Chaffinch (Pinzón Vulgar / Fringilla coelebs), Black Wheatear (Collalba Negra / Oenanthe leucura), Dartford Warbler (Curruca Rabilarga / Sylvia undata), Great Tit (Carbonera Común / Parus major), Jackdaw (Grajilla / Corvus monedula) and a Little Owl (Mochuelo Europeo / Athene noctua) which I watched for 10 minutes chasing large beetles around on a grassy slope.
Meadow Pipit (Bisbita Pratense / Anthus pratensis).

Meadow Pipit (Bisbita Pratense / Anthus pratensis).

Down amongest the Pine woodlands just above the motorway I made a stop and heard and saw Short-toed Treecreeper (Agateador Común / Certhia brachydactyla), Mistle Thrush (Zorzal Charlo / Turdus viscivorus), Song Thrush (Zorzal Común / Turdus philomelos), Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus) and a small flock of Common Crossbills (Piquituerto Común / Loxia curvirostra).
Grey Heron (Garza Real / Ardea cinerea).
Grey Heron (Garza Real / Ardea cinerea).
I drove back through Loja and popped into the house to drop off most of my kit before I went for a walk down on the fields where I walked the Arroyo finding
Grey Heron (Garza Real / Ardea cinerea),Common Waxbill (Estrilda Ondulada / Estrilda astrild), Common (Urraca / Pica pica) and Iberian  Magpies (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cooki), Cetti's Warbler (Ruisenor Bastardo / Cettia cetti), Hoopoe (Abubilla / Upupa epops), House Sparrow (Gorrión Común / Passer domesticus), Common Buzzard (Busardo Ratonero / Buteo buteo), Common Chiffchaff (Mosquitero Común / Phylloscopus collybita), 48 Northern Lapwings (Avefria Europea / Vanellus vanellus), Zitting Cisticola (Buitrón / Cisticola juncidis), Blackcap (Curruca Capirotada / Sylvia atricailla), Skylark (Alondra Común / Alauda arvensis) and on one of the irrigation channels a Green Sandpiper (Andarrios Grande / Tringa ochropus).
Northern Lapwings (Avefria Europea / Vanellus vanellus).

Northern Lapwings (Avefria Europea / Vanellus vanellus).

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