Saturday 29 May 2021

Laguna Dulce, Puerto Martínez and the Rio Turon, Malaga Province, Spain.

Out for a walk lead José Manuel Moreno Benítez looking for Butterflies.
José Manuel Moreno Benítez on facebook, where you can find out more about his great walks which are based around Malaga Province and take place most Saturdays.
A stunning place for a walk.
I drove over to the meeting point for today's walk at Puerto Martínez with just a short stop at Laguna Dulce on the way.
Common Crossbills (Piquituerto Común / Loxia curvirostra).
I parked and checked the lake from the hide, the water level was down but there was still plenty which was a bit of a surprise as most places have been drained by the local agricultural needs, in the main it is used to irrigate and over produce the Olive crop which has been devastating for areas like Furnte de Piedra which is completely dry already.
Spanish Gatekeeper (Pyronia bathsheba).

Spanish Gatekeeper (Pyronia bathsheba).

Birds seen on the water and the margins included Greater Flamingo's (Flamenco Común / Phoenicopterus roseus), Yellow-legged (Gaviota Patiamarilla / Larus Michahellis) and Black-headed Gulls (Gaviota Riedora / Larus ridibundus), Gull-billed Tern (Pagaza Piconegra / Gelochelidon nilotica), Red-crested (Pato Colorado / Netta rufina) and Common Pochard (Porrón Común / Aythya ferina), Mallard (Anade Azulón / Anas platyrhynchos), Gadwall (Anade Friso / Anas strepera), Black-necked (Zampullín Cullinegro / Podiceps nigricollis) and Little Grebe (Zampullín Común / Tachybaptus ruficollis), Eurasian Coot (Focha Común / Fulica atra), Little Egret (Garceta Común / Egreeta garzetta), White Stork (Ciguena Blanca / Ciconia ciconia) and Black-winged Stilt (Ciguenela Común / Himantopus himantopus).
Cynara cardunculus.
Cynara cardunculus.
In the reeds, bushes I also had Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra), Zitting Cisticola (Buitrón / Cisticola juncidis), Reed Warbler (Carricero Común / Acrocephalus scrpaceus), Goldfinch (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis), Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus), Hoopoe (Abubilla / Upupa epops), Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor), House Martin (Avión Común / Delichon urbica), Barn Swallow (Golondrina Común / Hirundo rustica) and Common Swift (Vencejo Común / Apus apus).
Small Skipper (Thymelicus sylvestris).
Sage Skipper (Muschampia proto).
Lulworth Skipper (Thymelicus acteon).
Lulworth Skipper (Thymelicus acteon).
Southern Marbled Skipper (Carcharodus baeticus).
I drove on to the meeting point, on the way I saw a
Stone Curlew (Alcaraván Común / Burhinus oedicnemus) just as I left the laguna and as I approached the meeting point both Woodpigeon (Paloma Torcaz / Columba palumbus) and Jay (Arrendajo / Garrulus glandarius) flew across the road.
Linum Species.

Astragalus species ?????
I parked at the spot and after José and the others arrived we drove a short way down to the start point and then we took to the track which lead us up through some stunning countryside where we found lots of Butterflies, Wildflowers, a few Birds and other odds and ends.
Common / Southern Blue (Polyommatus icarus / celina).
Wall Brown (Lasiommata megera).
Marsh Fritillary (Euphydrayas aurinia).
Marsh Fritillary (Euphydrayas aurinia).
Western Dappled White (Euchloe crameri).
Cleopatra (Gonepteryx cleopatra).
All along the walk the were plenty of Spanish Gatekeepers (Pyronia bathsheba) which were probably the commonest species seen, along with Small Skipper (Thymelicus sylvestris), Clouded Yellow (Colias corceua), Wall Brown (Lasiommata megera), Western Dappled White (Euchloe crameri), Cleopatra (Gonepteryx cleopatra), Bath White (Pontia daplidice), False Ilex Hairstreak (Satyrium esculi), Iberian Marbled White (Melanargia lachesis), Lang's Short-tailed Blue (Leptotes pirithous), Large White (Pieris brassicae), Long-tailed Blue (Lampides baeticus), Marsh Fritillary (Euphydrayas aurinia), Meadow Brown (Maniola jurtina), Lorquin's Blue (Cupido lorquinii), Painted Lady (Vanessa cardui), Lulworth Skipper (Thymelicus acteon), Queen of Spain (Issoria lathonia), Sage Skipper (Muschampia proto), Small Copper (Lycaena phlaeas), Small White (Pieris rapae), Southern Brown Argus (Aricia cramera),  Small Heath (Coenonympha pamphilus), Southern Marbled Skipper (Carcharodus baeticus), Spanish Marbled White (Melanargia ines), Speckled Wood (Pararge aegeria), Wall Brown (Lasiommata megera) and Western Dappled White (Euchloe crameri) which made for a pretty good haul and I am sure there are a couple I have missed.
Beetle Species.

Stick Insect Species.
Spider Species ????

Hoverfly Species ?????

Libelloides baeticus.
Agapanthia irrorata a stunning Longhorn Beetle species.

Bird wise I heard and saw Wren (Chochin / Troglodytes troglodytes), Bonelli's Warbler (Mosquitero Papialbo / Phylloscopus bonelli), Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata), Iberian Green Woodpecker (Pito Real / Picus sharpei), Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra), Cirl Bunting (Escribano Soteno / Emberiza cirlus), Mistle Thrush (Zorzal Charlo / Turdus viscivorus), European Bee-eater (Abejaruco Común / Merops apiaster), Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula), Griffon Vulture (Bultre Leonado / Gyps fulvus), Blackcap (Curruca Capirotada / Sylvia atricailla), Common Chaffinch (Pinzón Vulgar / Fringilla coelebs), Goldfinch (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis), House Martin (Avión Común / Delichon urbica), Great Tit (Carbonera Común / Parus major), Barn Swallow (Golondrina Común / Hirundo rustica), Nightingale (Ruisenor Común / Luscinia megarhynchos) and Sardinian Warbler (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala).
Blue Spotted Hairstreak (Satyrium spini).
Blue Spotted Hairstreak (Satyrium spini).
False Ilex Hairstreak (Satyrium esculi).
False Ilex Hairstreak (Satyrium esculi).
We also had a few other insects but most still need names but they included a stunning black and white Longhorn Beetle which José has got named as Agapanthia irrorata which was a nice find as was a beautiful Viperine Snake (Culebra Viperina / Natrix maura) spotted by Maria which was in a small trackside pool with lots of Perez's Froga (Rana Común / Pelophylax perezi) and their tadpoles which the snake was snaking on.
Perez's Frog (Rana Común / Pelophylax perezi).

Meadow Brown (Maniola jurtina).
Viperine Snake (Culebra Viperina / Natrix maura).

After about 4 hours we were back at the cars and the group went on their way after a brilliant mornings walk, seeing some very nice species in good company, thank you to José and the others.
Small Pincertail (Onychogomphus forcipatus).
Small White (Pieris rapae).
I started to head home but made two stops along the nearby Rio Turon where I had good views of 
Small Pincertail (Onychogomphus forcipatus), Scarlet Darter (Crocothemis erythraea), Epaulet Skimmer (Orthetrum chrysostigma), Blue / Common Emperor (Anax imperator), Turtle Dove (Tórtola Europea / Streptopelia turtur) and Hawfinch (Picogordo / Coccotraustes coccotrauetes) before heading home.


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