Saturday 15 August 2020

Huétor Fields, Granada Province, Spain.

A morning out on the patch with some migrants.

As with many of the birds in the fig tree they played hard to get, Golden Oriole (Oropéndola / Oriolus oriolus) Female.
I dropped down to the dry Arroyo Vilano to check the local patch, on the way I started the list off with Iberian  Magpie (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cooki), Greenfinch (Verderón Común / Carduelis chloris), a Little Owl (Mochuelo Europeo / Athene noctua) which was hunting from a road side wire, House Sparrow (Gorrión Común / Passer domesticus), Goldfinch (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis), Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula), Collared Dove (Tórtola Turca / Streptopelia decaocto), Great Tit (Carbonera Común / Parus major) and Barn Swallow (Golondrina Común / Hirundo rustica).
Common Whitethroat (Curruca Zarcera / Sylvia communis).
My first stop was on the side of the track looking across the Arroyo to the large Lucerne fields and whilst I was there I added Crested Lark (Cogujada / Galerida cristata), Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata), Woodpigeon (Paloma Torcaz / Columba palumbus), Spanish (Yellow) Wagtail (Lavandera Boyera / Motacilla flava iberiae), Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor), Cetti's Warbler (Ruisenor Bastardo / Cettia cetti), Zitting Cisticola (Buitrón / Cisticola juncidis), an immature Woodchat Shrike (Alcaudón Común / Lanius senator) which was sat in a Fig Tree, Hoopoe (Abubilla / Upupa epops), Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra), House Martin (Avión Común / Delichon urbica), European Bee-eater (Abejaruco Común / Merops apiaster) and Sardinian Warbler (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala).
Common Whitethroat (Curruca Zarcera / Sylvia communis).
I crossed  the road and followed on up the Arroyo to the reed filled section where the irrigation ditches put some water into the dry river bed. Here I could hear a calling Common Quail (Codorniz Común / Coturnix coturnix), on the far bank amongst the dried off vegetation I found 3 Melodious Warblers (Zarcero Común / Hippolais polyglotta) and the only Common Waxbill (Estrilda Ondulada / Estrilda astrild) of the morning and flushed a Green Sandpiper (Andarrios Grande / Tringa ochropus).
Garden Warbler (Curruca Mosquitera / Sylvia borin) another shy species.
I made my way back along the track but parked near one of the Fig Trees opposite a poplar plantation, I could hear Golden Orioles (Oropéndola / Oriolus oriolus) calling from the Poplars and as I sat in the car a female flew into the Fig but stayed at the back of the tree.
Woodchat Shrike (Alcaudón Común / Lanius senator) immature.
Other birds were passing through the tree including several Common Whitethroats (Curruca Zarcera / Sylvia communis), a couple of Garden Warblers (Curruca Mosquitera / Sylvia borin), a Reed Warbler (Carricero Común / Acrocephalus scrpaceus), Tree Sparrows (Gorrión Molinero / Passer montanus) and a female Common Chaffinch (Pinzón Vulgar / Fringilla coelebs).
Woodchat Shrike (Alcaudón Común / Lanius senator) immature.
In the fields there was a calling Red-legged Partridge (Perdiz Roja / Alectoris rufa) and in the air good numbers of hirudines including some Red-rumped Swallows (Golondrina Dáurica / Hirundo daurica), 2 Common Swifts (Vencejo Común / Apus apus) and a flyby Great Spotted Woodpecker (Pico Picapinos / Dendrocopos major).
Reed Warbler (Carricero Común / Acrocephalus scrpaceus).
I moved over to the Mesia road side of the area where I saw 25 Western Cattle Egret (Garcilla Bueyera / Bubulcus ibis) which were following a tractor out on on of the fields and a Common Kestrel (Cernicalo Vulgar / Falco tinnunculus) that was sat on one of the pylons.
Reed Warbler (Carricero Común / Acrocephalus scrpaceus).
Other species seen here were Common Magpie (Urraca / Pica pica), Common Moorhen (Gallineta Común / Gallinulas chloropus), Feral Pigeon (Paloma Bravía / Columba livia) and a Turtle Dove (Tórtola Europea / Streptopelia turtur).
Iberian  Magpie (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cooki).
I turned around and returned home via the far side of the Arroyo and checked the Lucerne fields adding Jackdaw (Grajilla / Corvus monedula), a Short-toed Eagle (Culebrera Europeo / Circaetus gallicus) which was perched up high on one of the large pylons, a female looking Northern Wheatear (Collalba Gris / Oenanthe oenanthe), Serins (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus), White Wagtail (Lavandera Blanca / Montacilla alba) and Bath White (Pontia daplidice) before heading around to the Loja fields.
Short-toed Eagle (Culebrera Europeo / Circaetus gallicus).
Here I found a large roost of Spotless Starlings in a big fig tree as well as Small White (Pieris rapae), Long-tailed (Lampides baeticus) and African Grass Blue (Zizeeia knysna) and back in the garden a mating pair of Epaulet Skimmers (Orthetrum chrysostigma) and lots of Perez's Frogs (Rana Común / Pelophylax perezi).
Evening update,  a loop of Huétor added Grey Heron (Garza Real / Ardea cinerea), Stone Curlew (Alcaraván Común / Burhinus oedicnemus) over the fields and down by the river in amongst all the domestic Greylag Geese (Ansar Común / Anser anser) and Muscovy Ducks (Cairina moschata) the long staying Barnical Goose (Barnacla Cariblanca / Branta leucopsis) was still presant.
I finished the loop and as I drove back towards the house I had a Red-necked Nightjar (Chotacabras Cuellirrojo / Caprimulgus ruficollis) fly across the road.

Tuesday 11 August 2020

Laguna Chica, Laguna Grande and Salinas area, Malaga Province.

A couple of hours on the far parts of the local patch.

Scarlet Darter (Crocothemis erythraea) male.
I had a couple of hours on the distant part of my patch just over the border into Malaga Province, on the way to Laguna Chica I started the list off with Iberian  Magpies (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cooki), Turtle Dove (Tórtola Europea / Streptopelia turtur), Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor), House Sparrow (Gorrión Común / Passer domesticus), Red-rumped (Golondrina Dáurica / Hirundo daurica) and Barn Swallows (Golondrina Común / Hirundo rustica), House Martin (Avión Común / Delichon urbica) and Zitting Cisticola (Buitrón / Cisticola juncidis).
I parked amoungst the trees at above a very low water level pool which was surrounded by a thick belt of Tamarisk bushes, on the water I could see Mallard (Anade Azulón / Anas platyrhynchos), Common Pochard (Porrón Común / Aythya ferina) and Eurasian Coot (Focha Común / Fulica atra) and in the trees and in the air over the site I also had European Bee-eater (Abejaruco Común / Merops apiaster), Common Buzzard (Busardo Ratonero / Buteo buteo), Iberian Grey Shrike (Alcaudón Real Meridional / Lanius meridionalis), Golden Oriole (Oropéndola / Oriolus oriolus), Reed (Carricero Común / Acrocephalus scrpaceus), Sardinian (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala) and Cetti's Warbler (Ruisenor Bastardo / Cettia cetti).
White Featherleg (Platycnemis latipes).
I walked through the scrub around the Northern side of the pool but did not find a single Dragonfly which was a big surprise as the site had been so good in previous years, I did see Common / Southern (Polyommatus icarus / celina) and Adonis Blue (Lysandra bellargus), Iberian Scarce Swallowtail (Iphiclides feisthameli) and Small White (Pieris rapae).
I returned to the car and drove around to Laguna Grande where the oposite problem came up, there was so much water in it that there was no margin to allow me to search for Dragons, but out on the water there were again Mallards, Common Pochards, Eurasian Coot, a family of Great Crested Grebes (Somormujo Lavanco / Podiceps cristatus) two adults and three well grown youngsters, Little Grebe (Zampullín Común / Tachybaptus ruficollis) and a pair of Black-winged Stilt (Ciguenela Común / Himantopus himantopus) which as usual were the noisiest species there.
Scarlet Darter (Crocothemis erythraea) male.
Other species seen whilst stood above the lake included Crag Martin (Avión Roquero / Ptyonoprogne rupestris), Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula), Blue Tit (Herrerillo Común / Parus caeruleus), Collared Dove (Tórtola Turca / Streptopelia decaocto), Woodpigeon (Paloma Torcaz / Columba palumbus), Common Magpie (Urraca / Pica pica), White Wagtail (Lavandera Blanca / Montacilla alba), Greenfinch (Verderón Común / Carduelis chloris) and Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra).
I moved on again and made my way around to a stream near Salinas where I did eventually find some Dragonflies, a very smart male Southern Skimmer (Orthetrum brunneum) and a male Scarlet Darter (Crocothemis erythraea) were doing battle for a perch on one of the reed stems and along the ditch I also found several male Keeled Skimmers (Orthetrum coerulescens), a few White Featherleg (Platycnemis latipes) as well as Woodchat Shrike (Alcaudón Común / Lanius senator), Spotted Flycatcher (Papamoscas Gris / Muscicapa striata), Great Spotted (Pico Picapinos / Dendrocopos major) and Iberian Green Woodpecker (Pito Real / Picus sharpei), Melodious Warbler (Zarcero Común / Hippolais polyglotta), Jackdaw (Grajilla / Corvus monedula) and a pale morph Booted Eagle (Aguililla Calzada / Hieraaetus pennatus).
Blue-eye (Erythromma lindenii).
I moved just up the track to another patch of water which turns out to be a large water leak from the mains. A lady resident just above where I was photographing a few more dragons came down as she was hoping I was from the water company. Alsa I explained to her what I was doing and her and her son came down for a look at the dragons and were quite interested.
Here I again had Southern and Keeled Skimmers, Scarlet Darter and added Orange-winged Dropwing (Trithemis kirbyi) and a couple of Blue-eye's (Erythromma lindenii).
As I drove off the area and into Salinas for a Menu del dia I had Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus), Linnet (Pardillo Común / Carduelis cannabina), Hoopoe (Abubilla / Upupa epops), Goldfinch (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis) and Crested Lark (Cogujada / Galerida cristata).
Wasp Species.
As always the food for lunch was very good and I later made my way home full but disappointed in the Dragonfly numbers for the day.