Sunday 28 March 2021

Cerro Hacho, Granada Province, Spain.

A walk up Cerro Hacho looking for Orchids.
Yellow Bee Orchid (Ophrys lutea).
Yellow Bee Orchid (Ophrys lutea).
Yellow Bee Orchid (Ophrys lutea).
As there were lots of Picnickers down at the lower parking areas I drove straight up to the top car park and walked up the hill from there looking for a couple of Orchid species which Anita from Granada found a few days ago.
Sawfly Orchid (Ophrys tenthredinifera).
At the start of the track I found Yellow Bee (Ophrys lutea), Somber Bee (Ophrys fusca / foresteri), Mirror (Ophrys speculum) and Sawfly Orchid (Ophrys tenthredinifera), Snake's Head Fritillary (Fritillaria hispanica), Grey-leaved Cistis (Cistis albidus), Wild Grape Hyacinth (Muscari neglectum) and Red Squirrel (Sciurus vulgaris).
Snake's Head Fritillary (Fritillaria hispanica).
Snake's Head Fritillary (Fritillaria hispanica).
In the trees around the car park I also saw and heard
Coal Tit  (Carbonero Garrapinos / Parus ater), Common Chaffinch (Pinzón Vulgar / Fringilla coelebs), Firecrest (Reyezuelo Listado / Regulus ignicapillus), Iberian Green Woodpecker (Pito Real / Picus sharpei) and Short-toed Treecreeper (Agateador Común / Certhia brachydactyla).
Somber Bee Orchid (Ophrys fusca / foresteri).
Somber Bee Orchid (Ophrys fusca / foresteri).
Under the pines and along the Northern slopes I found Mediterranean Kidney Vetch (Anthyllis vulneraria), Common Asphodel (Asphodelus aestivus), lots of Southern Early Purple Orchid (Orchis olbienis) but most were past their best, around 12 spikes of Pink Butterfly (Orchis papilionacea), a good number of Giant (Himantoglossum Robertiana) and Fan-lipped Orchid (Anacamptis collina).
Southern Early Purple Orchid (Orchis olbienis).
Also seen before I reached the top of the track were Eruca sativa, Scarlet Pimpernel (Anagallis arvensis), Iberis pectinata, Tassel Hyacinth (Muscari comosum), Wild Clary (Salvia verbenaca), White Mignonette (Reseda Alba) and Andalucian Gorse (Ulex baeticus).
Giant Orchid (Himantoglossum Robertiana).
Down below the track on the crags a couple of pairs of Red-billed Chough (Chova Piquirroja / Pyrrhocorax pyrrhocorax), a very noisy male Common Kestrel (Cernicalo Vulgar / Falco tinnunculus), Black Redstart (Colirrojo Tizón / Phoenicurus ochruros), Black Wheatear (Collalba Negra / Oenanthe leucura), Common Crossbill (Piquituerto Común / Loxia curvirostra), House Martin (Avión Común / Delichon urbica) and Barn Swallow (Golondrina Común / Hirundo rustica).
Field Madder (Sherardia arvensis).
Iberis pectinata.
Eruca sativa.
Around the top and on the zig-zag trail back down to the main track I found Silvery Paronychia (Paronychia argentea), Spring Rockcress (Arabis verna), Cloven Petalled Campion (Silene colorata), Southern Daisy (Bellis cordifolia) and Field Madder (Sherardia arvensis). 
Spring Rockcress (Arabis verna).
Common Asphodel (Asphodelus aestivus).
As I dropped down the Zig-zags I saw several Red Admirals (Vanessa atalanta), Small Heath (Coenonympha pamphilus), Provence Orange-tip (Anthocharis euphenodes), Clouded Yellow (Colias corcea), Hummingbird Hawkmoth (Macroglossum stellatarum),  Rabbit (Conejo / Oryctolagus cuniculus), a male Spanish Ibex (Cabra montés / Cabra pyreaica) which ran across the track in front of me and 5 very weak looking spikes of Man Orchid (Orchis anthropophora).
Tassel Hyacinth (Muscari comosum).
Bellis microcephala.
Birds on the way down included
Red-legged Partridge (Perdiz Roja / Alectoris rufa), Sardinian Warbler (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala), Wren (Chochin / Troglodytes troglodytes), Rock Bunting (Escribano Montesino / Emberiza cia), Thekla Lark (Cogujada Montesina / Galerida theklae), Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus), Long-tailed (Mito / Aegithalos caudatus) and Crested Tit (Herrerillo Capuchino / Parus cristatus) and a calling Common Cuckoo (Cuco Común / Cuculus canorus) off down the valley.
Man Orchid (Orchis anthropophora).
Pink Butterfly Orchid (Orchis papilionacea).
Pink Butterfly Orchid (Orchis papilionacea).
Just before I reached the main track I found more spikes of Pink Butterfly Orchids which I think were the ones that Anita, I also had
Brimstone (Gonepteryx rhamni), Western Dappled (Euchloe crameri), Large White (Pieris brassicae), Small Copper (Lycaena phlaeas), Carpentor Bee (Xylocopa violacea), Large Psammodromus (Psammodromus algirus), Woodpigeon (Paloma Torcaz / Columba palumbus), Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor), Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula), Mistle Thrush (Zorzal Charlo / Turdus viscivorus), Iberian  Magpie (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cooki), Blue Tit (Herrerillo Común / Parus caeruleus) and Blackcap (Curruca Capirotada / Sylvia atricailla).
Western Dappled White (Euchloe crameri).

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