Wednesday 9 December 2020

Huétor Fields, Granada Province, Spain.

Birding on the patch again, nice but it would be good to get out and about a bit.
The view across the fields to Sierra Nevada.
I dropped down to my usual parking slot and started started to walk out around the Lucerne fields, near the car there I started the list with Collared Dove (Tórtola Turca / Streptopelia decaocto), Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor), Woodpigeon (Paloma Torcaz / Columba palumbus), White Wagtail (Lavandera Blanca / Montacilla alba), Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula), Meadow Pipit (Bisbita Pratense / Anthus pratensis), House Sparrow (Gorrión Común / Passer domesticus), Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus), Greenfinch (Verderón Común / Carduelis chloris) and Goldfinch (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis).
Common / Garden Bulbul (Bulbul Naranjero / Pycnonotus barbatus).
I started the walk along the Arroyo scanning the Lucerne fields finding 5x Golden Plovers (Chorlito Dorado Europeo / Pluvialis apricaia), 23x Northern Lapwings (Avefria Europea / Vanellus vanellus), 3x Western Cattle Egrets (Garcilla Bueyera / Bubulcus ibis), lots of Iberian  Magpies (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cooki) in fruit trees on the far side of the Lucerne, a Hoopoe (Abubilla / Upupa epops) which came up from the side of the track, Jackdaw (Grajilla / Corvus monedula), 2x Sardinian Warblers (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala), Common Kestrel (Cernicalo Vulgar / Falco tinnunculus), Crested Lark (Cogujada / Galerida cristata), Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra), Common Chaffinch (Pinzón Vulgar / Fringilla coelebs), Black Redstart (Colirrojo Tizón / Phoenicurus ochruros) and Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata).
Water Pipit (Bisbita Alpino / Anthus spinoletta).
On the other side of the track along the river I had 2x
Green Sandpiper (Andarrios Grande / Tringa ochropus), a Water Pipit (Bisbita Alpino / Anthus spinoletta), Common Magpie (Urraca / Pica pica), Common Chiffchaff (Mosquitero Común / Phylloscopus collybita) and a couple of Grey Wagtails (Lavandera Cascadena / Motacilla cinerea).
Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor) male.
I had only been walking for 15 minutes or so when I got a call from Mariano Guerrero from the Medio Ambiente, he was near Granada wand wanted to come over to see the wintering
Little Bustards (Sisón Común / Tetrax tetrax) which was a project he was working on.
Common Kestrel (Cernicalo Vulgar / Falco tinnunculus).
So I shut down the EBird list I was doing and walked back to the car, just before I got there I heard a call I had been hoping to hear from the first time I heard it back on the 1st November, it was the
Common / Garden Bulbul (Bulbul Naranjero / Pycnonotus barbatus) which had been elusive that day but this time it sat up just long enough for me to get some distant but identifiable shot.
Bluethroat (Pechiazul / Luscinia svecica) male.
I got to the car and then drove just down the road to the field where the Little Bustards usually spend the day and waited for him to arrive. Before Mariano arrived I had found the Bustards and had counted 17 birds but when Mariano had arrived we managed to get the count up to 25 and then after a while the flock took off and we counted 30.
Bluethroat (Pechiazul / Luscinia svecica) male.
We visited a few more of the spots where the Bustards spend their time but did not find them again, however back at the spot where I had seen the Bulbul we had a nice male Bluethroat (Pechiazul / Luscinia svecica) before I headed back to the house and Mariano continued on around the area again.
Grey Heron (Garza Real / Ardea cinerea).
Later I dropped back down onto the fields and again found the Common Bulbul but it was more elusive and remained out of sight whilst singing from a weedy patch on the far side of the Arroyo, I did however see a couple of male Desert Darters (Sympetrum sinaiticum) whilst I was trying to get views. 
Grey Heron (Garza Real / Ardea cinerea).
I did the walk I had started earlier as far as the Poplar plantation and then back to the car again, on the way there and back again I added Grey Heron (Garza Real / Ardea cinerea), a calling Little Owl (Mochuelo Europeo / Athene noctua), 2x Mallards (Anade Azulón / Anas platyrhynchos), Tree Sparrow (Gorrión Molinero / Passer montanus), Mistle Thrush (Zorzal Charlo / Turdus viscivorus) and 5x Red-legged Partridges (Perdiz Roja / Alectoris rufa).
Bluethroat (Pechiazul / Luscinia svecica).
I got back into the car and went to the irrigation channels near the Mesia road and checked the pool formed by a leak where I had another male Bluethroat, a Water Pipit, Zitting Cisticola (Buitrón / Cisticola juncidis), lots of Common Waxbills (Estrilda Ondulada / Estrilda astrild) and a calling Perez's Frog (Rana Común / Pelophylax perezi).

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