Wednesday 30 December 2020

La Janda, La Zarga, Barbate, Costa Ballena and Chipiona Port, Cadiz Province, Spain.

Back down South for a days birding.
Common Crane (Grulla Común / Grus grus) and the Moon.
I started off well before dawn and arrived at the Northern entrance whilst it was still dark, so I sat and waited for the light and listened to the Common Cranes (Grulla Común / Grus grus) leaving their roost fields and heading out to feed.
Common Crane (Grulla Común / Grus grus) in the morning sun.
Common Crane (Grulla Común / Grus grus) in the morning sun.
I the poor light I also saw and heard Mallard (Anade Azulón / Anas platyrhynchos), Cetti's Warbler (Ruisenor Bastardo / Cettia cetti), the first of a great many White Storks (Ciguena Blanca / Ciconia ciconia), Common Moorhen (Gallineta Común / Gallinulas chloropus), Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula) and Common Kestrel (Cernicalo Vulgar / Falco tinnunculus).
More Common Cranes (Grulla Común / Grus grus).
Once the light got a bit better I started to drive towards the bridge crossing the main channel, on the way I had several Zitting Cisticola's (Buitrón / Cisticola juncidis) come up from the track side along with good numbers of Common Chiffchaff (Mosquitero Común / Phylloscopus collybita), Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata) and Grey Heron (Garza Real / Ardea cinerea).
White Storks (Ciguena Blanca / Ciconia ciconia) in the morning mist.

White Storks (Ciguena Blanca / Ciconia ciconia) in the morning mist.

Further along the track the rice fields were flooded and there were lots of White Storks in the morning mist along with a few of the many Common Cranes, as well as
Little Egret (Garceta Común / Egreeta garzetta), Lesser Black-backed Gull (Gaviota Sombria / Larus fuscus), Green Sandpiper (Andarrios Grande / Tringa ochropus) and Marsh Harrier (Aguilucho Lagunero Occidental / Circus aeruginosus).
Great Cormorants (Cormorán Grande / Phalacrocroax carbo).
I reached the turn to the farm and then followed the track, as I drove towards the canal half way along I saw large numbers of Great Cormorants (Cormorán Grande / Phalacrocroax carbo) in V formation heading towards the sea and also had Western Cattle Egret (Garcilla Bueyera / Bubulcus ibis), Common Buzzard (Busardo Ratonero / Buteo buteo) and on the same pylon as I had see it a few days ago a smart looking Black-winged Kite (Elanio Común / Elanus caeruleus).
Black-winged Kite (Elanio Común / Elanus caeruleus).
As I drove up through the farm area and then out onto the area of Wild Olives I found
Jackdaw (Grajilla / Corvus monedula), Common Chaffinch (Pinzón Vulgar / Fringilla coelebs), Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra), Woodpigeon (Paloma Torcaz / Columba palumbus), Blackcap (Curruca Capirotada / Sylvia atricailla), Goldfinch (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis), Pheasant (Faisán Vulgar / Phaisanus colchicus) and Collared Dove (Tórtola Turca / Streptopelia decaocto).
Collared Dove (Tórtola Turca / Streptopelia decaocto).
I dropped down on to the road up to Benalup where I had lots more White Storks, a good number of
Western Swamp-hens (Calamon Común / Porphyrio porphyrio), White Wagtail (Lavandera Blanca / Montacilla alba), Skylark (Alondra Común / Alauda arvensis), Meadow Pipit (Bisbita Pratense / Anthus pratensis), Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor), a nice flock of Spanish Sparrow (Gorrión Moruno / Passer hispaniolensis) and a second Black-winged Kite.
Spanish Sparrows (Gorrión Moruno / Passer hispaniolensis).
I turned around and drove back towards the junction back towards the farm, on the way I had a
Squacco Heron (Garcilla Cangrejera / Ardeola ralloides) down on the small river, even more White Storks and out on a flooded field several Northern Lapwings (Avefria Europea / Vanellus vanellus) and a few Black-winged Stilts (Ciguenela Común / Himantopus himantopus).
White Storks (Ciguena Blanca / Ciconia ciconia).
White Storks (Ciguena Blanca / Ciconia ciconia).
As I drove back across to the main Channel I picked up
Linnet (Pardillo Común / Carduelis cannabina), Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus), Robin (Petirrojo Europeo / Erithacus rubecula), Crested Lark (Cogujada / Galerida cristata), Red-legged Partridge (Perdiz Roja / Alectoris rufa), Raven (Cuervo / Corvus corax) and a Black Kite (Milano Negro / Milvus migrans).
Great Egret (Garceta Grande / Egretta alba).

Little Egret (Garceta Común / Egreeta garzetta) and Great Egret (Garceta Grande / Egretta alba).

Back out along the main canal I found a couple of Great Egrets (Garceta Grande / Egretta alba), Common Waxbill (Estrilda Ondulada / Estrilda astrild), a flyby Kingfisher (Martin Pescador / Alcedo atthis) and a hunting Peregrine Falcon (Halcón Peregrino / Falco peregrinus) which shot out over the fields flushing everything on it's way.
Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata) female.
On my way off the site there were several Common Stonechats, Corn Buntings, Zitting Cisticola and Common Chiffchaffs.
Griffon Vulture (Bultre Leonado / Gyps fulvus).
Once I was off La Janda I dropped down to Bolonia and then out on a track to a cliff where I saw loads of soaring
Griffon Vultures (Bultre Leonado / Gyps fulvus) as well as Blue-rock Thrush (Roquero Solitario / Monticola solitarius), Common Kestrel (Cernicalo Vulgar / Falco tinnunculus) and Black Redstart (Colirrojo Tizón / Phoenicurus ochruros).
Caspian Tern (Pagaza Piquiroja / Sterna caspia).
I Started to head back up the coast to Barbate Marshes where I parked up and walked out on one of the track on to the salt pans, here I had a 
Caspian Tern (Pagaza Piquiroja / Sterna caspia) do a flyby and 6 Stone Curlews (Alcaraván Común / Burhinus oedicnemus) start walking away from me along the shore of the larger pool.
Audouin's Gulls (Gaviota de Audouin / Larus audouinii) mostly.

Out on the other pools there were lots of Audouin's (Gaviota de Audouin / Larus audouinii), Black-headed (Gaviota Riedora / Larus ridibundus) and Lesser Black-backed Gulls, Black-winged Stilts, Greenshank (Archibebe Claro / Tringa nebularia), Common Redshank (Archibebe Común / Tringa totanus), Sanderling (Correlimos Tridáctilo / Calidris alba) and Greater Flamingo's (Flamenco Común / Phoenicopterus roseus).
Ruddy Turnstone (Vuelvepiedras Común / Arenaria interpres).

I again headed North to a new site for me, I was looking for a
Common Gull (Gaviota Cana /Larus canus) which had been seen at Costa Ballena for a few days.
Eurasian Coot (Focha Común / Fulica atra).
Eurasian Coot (Focha Común / Fulica atra).
I arrived and found a large flock of around 150
Ruddy Turnstone (Vuelvepiedras Común / Arenaria interpres), lots of Eurasian Coots (Focha Común / Fulica atra), Mallards, Little Grebe (Zampullín Común / Tachybaptus ruficollis), many Mediterranean Gulls (Gaviota Cabecinegra / Larus melanocephalus) and amongst them a single Common Gull which sat and roosted on the grass margin.
Common Gull (Gaviota Cana /Larus canus).
In the same area I also had
Yellow-legged (Gaviota Patiamarilla / Larus Michahellis) and Lesser Black-backed Gull, Sardinian Warbler (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala), Monk Parakeet (Cotorra Argentina / Myiopsitta monachus), Hoopoe (Abubilla / Upupa epops) and many Crag Martins (Avión Roquero / Ptyonoprogne rupestris).
Common Gull (Gaviota Cana /Larus canus).
I again moved on and went to the Port at Chipiona again where I met Ricky again who was giving the Iceland Gull (Gaviota Groenlandesa / Larus glaucoides) another try, we spent some time walking round but did not find anything and in the end spent some time scanning the Jetties from the Wearhouse area.
Iceland Gull (Gaviota Groenlandesa / Larus glaucoides).
After a while I had a brief view of a Gull drop down towards the far beach but It was a long way off so I was not sure, I decided to drive round and check and when I got there I found the bird sat on the beach but I arived just as a guy walked down to walk his dog and he flushed all the Gulls out on to the sea.
I called Ricky and he arrived in time to get some good scope views of the bird and some distants shots which he kindly let me use here.
Iceland Gull (Gaviota Groenlandesa / Larus glaucoides).
After some time the bird took off and flew out to sea so we moved back to the Warehouse again and watched the Little Swifts (Vencejo Moro / Apus affinis) go to roost be fore heading off.

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