Tuesday 22 June 2021

From Santoñia in Cantabria to Santo Domingo de Silos in Burgos Province, Spain.

Dropping South to spend a couple of days with Friends.
Red Heleborine (Cephalanthera rubra).
I left the hotel in the rain, surprise, surprise but as I dropped South it did stop but remained cloudy so when I saw a road side spot with lots of Pyramidal Orchids (Anacamptis pyramidalia) I stopped for a break and checked the area for other species and found around 6 spikes of the beautiful Red Heleborine (Cephalanthera rubra) but due to the very overcast conditions and the deep shaded spot they were flowering in the photo's were poor.
Marbled White (Melanargia galathea).
Marbled White (Melanargia galathea).
I also found a couple of Marbled Whites (Melanargia galathea) which were still soaked from the overnight rains.
Tree Pipit (Bisbita Arbóreo / Anthus trivialis).

During the drive from here I saw
Bullfinch (Camachuelo Común / Pyrrhula pyrrhula), Black Kite (Milano Negro / Milvus migrans), Carrion Crow (Corneja Negra / Corvus corone), Common Cuckoo (Cuco Común / Cuculus canorus), Cirl Bunting (Escribano Soteno / Emberiza cirlus), Mistle Thrush (Zorzal Charlo / Turdus viscivorus), Iberian Green Woodpecker (Pito Real / Picus sharpei), White Stork (Ciguena Blanca / Ciconia ciconia) and Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra).
Northern Wheatear (Collalba Gris / Oenanthe oenanthe).
 Further south at a good looking area of Grassland, Scrub and Pine Woodland I stopped again for an hour to have a stroll round and see what I could find.
Fragrant Orchid (Gymnadenia conopsea).
Fragrant Orchid (Gymnadenia conopsea).
Fragrant Orchid (Gymnadenia conopsea).
This turned out to be a good choice for a stop as during my walk around I found several species of Orchid which included lots of Fragrant Orchid (Gymnadenia conopsea) and smaller numbers of Pyramidal, Frog (Dactylorhiza viridis), Bee (Ophrys apifera) and a few Fly Orchids (Ophrys insectifera), most were over with but I did find one plant which was not too bad.
Fly Orchid (Ophrys insectifera).
In the same area I also recorded
Northern Wheatear (Collalba Gris / Oenanthe oenanthe), Golden Oriole (Oropéndola / Oriolus oriolus), Tree Pipit (Bisbita Arbóreo / Anthus trivialis), Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula), Woodpigeon (Paloma Torcaz / Columba palumbus), Woodlark (Totovia / Lullula arborea) and a female Montagu's Harrier (Aguilucho Cenizo / Circus pygargus).
Bee Orchid (Ophrys apifera).
Woodcock Orchid (Ophrys Scolopax).
I returned to the car and had a drink before walking along the section of cut off road which is only used by farm traffic since a new road was put in, here I found
Woodcock Orchid (Ophrys Scolopax), Italian Sainfoin (Hedysarum coronarium) and a caterpillar of the moth 6765 Psilogaster loti.
6765 Psilogaster loti.
I continued on South arriving in the Santo Domingo de Silos very early so I went and had a look at La Yecla where I had good views of Griffon Vulture (Bultre Leonado / Gyps fulvus), Great Spotted Woodpecker (Pico Picapinos / Dendrocopos major), Wren (Chochin / Troglodytes troglodytes), Bonelli's Warbler (Mosquitero Papialbo / Phylloscopus bonelli), Black Redstart (Colirrojo Tizón / Phoenicurus ochruros), Common Buzzard (Busardo Ratonero / Buteo buteo), House Martin (Avión Común / Delichon urbica) and Jay (Arrendajo / Garrulus glandarius).
Mountain Argus (Aricia artaxerxes montensis).
Escher's Blue (Agrodiaetus escheri).
Escher's Blue (Agrodiaetus escheri).
Common Blue (Polyommatus celina).
Adonis Blue (Lysandra bellargus).
I walked the gorge finding Rock Dove (Paloma Bravía / Columba livia), Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus), Spotted Flycatcher (Papamoscas Gris / Muscicapa striata), Blackcap (Curruca Capirotada / Sylvia atricailla), European Bee-eater (Abejaruco Común / Merops apiaster), Common Kestrel (Cernicalo Vulgar / Falco tinnunculus), Crag Martin (Avión Roquero / Ptyonoprogne rupestris), Barn Swallow (Golondrina Común / Hirundo rustica), Robin (Petirrojo Europeo / Erithacus rubecula), Erodium daucoides and as I got back to the car I had a Southern White Admiral (Limenitis reducta) whizz passed. 
Erodium daucoides

Spanish Foxglove (Digitalis obscura).
I checked out the slopes above where I had parked the car where I found lots of Spanish Foxglove (Digitalis obscura), Adonis (Lysandra bellargus), Escher's (Agrodiaetus escheri) and Common Blue (Polyommatus celina), Mountain Argus (Aricia artaxerxes montensis), Small Skipper (Thymelicus sylvestris) and Wall Brown (Lasiommata megera).
Small Skipper (Thymelicus sylvestris).
Small Skipper (Thymelicus sylvestris).
I drove just down the road and parked by a rather large pile of animal poooooooo which was leaching liquid straight into the stream right next to it which I can't imagine is doing the local environment any good at all.
Knapweed Fritillary (Melitaea phoebe).
Knapweed Fritillary (Melitaea phoebe).
Peacock (Aglais io).
I walked around this area following the stream for a while and had a great time finding several species of butterflies including Peacock (Aglais io), Knapweed Fritillary (Melitaea phoebe), Iberian Marbled White (Melanargia lachesis) as well as Robust Marsh (Dactylorhiza elata), Woodcock and Pyramidal Orchids.
Bug Orchid (Anacamptis coriophora).
Robust Marsh Orchid (Dactylorhiza elata).
Robust Marsh Orchid (Dactylorhiza elata).
Woodcock Orchid (Ophrys Scolopax).
Woodcock Orchid (Ophrys Scolopax).
A bit further up the road I stopped again when I saw several spikes of Bug Orchid (Anacamptis coriophora) in an area of Grassland and in a small plantation of Poplars several spikes of Robust Marsh Orchid (Dactylorhiza elata).
Iberian Bluetail (Ischnura graellsii) Male.
I checked the grass and Thistles around the side of a fences water deposit where I found a single
Iberian Bluetail (Ischnura graellsii), a single Azure Damselfly (Coenagrion puella) and a smart moth called Diacrisia sannio.
10583 Diacrisia sannio.
My last stop of the day was just up the road at a boggy area where I had hoped there might be a dragonfly or two but I didn't find any at all but on the oposite side of the road I found a spike of
Lange's Orchid (Androrchis langei) before I went down to Santi and Howard's.
Lange's Orchid (Androrchis langei).
We spent the evening looking around the garden at the house and then had something to eat before hitting the pit.

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