Tuesday 31 May 2022

Sierra de Loja, Granada Province, Spain.

Pam and Johns Last day, so we returned to my favourite Mountain.
Pam and John, Day Seven.

Along the far crags.
We headed back up the mountain and as last time we ran straight over to the far side of the area where we were going to check in on the Rufous-tailed Rock Thrush (Roquero Roja / Monticola saxatilis) and we had great views.
Rufous-tailed Rock Thrush (Roquero Roja / Monticola saxatilis) the male and female together.
Rufous-tailed Rock Thrush (Roquero Roja / Monticola saxatilis) the male.
Rufous-tailed Rock Thrush (Roquero Roja / Monticola saxatilis) the female.
We parked on the track side and almost straight away we had both the male and female sat on a large bolder not far from the road, the male dropped down and started to feed but the female stayed and allowed me to get some decent shot.
Rufous-tailed Rock Thrush (Roquero Roja / Monticola saxatilis) the female.
Rufous-tailed Rock Thrush (Roquero Roja / Monticola saxatilis) the male.
Once I had got the female I crossed the road and found the male was sat on a rock below me and I again managed a few shots before he dropped down infront of the rock and continued feeding.
Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata).
Red-legged Partridge (Perdiz Roja / Alectoris rufa).
Rock Sparrow (Gorrión Chillón / Petronia petronia).
In this area we also recorded Thekla Lark (Cogujada Montesina / Galerida theklae), Goldfinch (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis), Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata), Black (Collalba Negra / Oenanthe leucura) and Black-eared Wheatear (Collalba Rubia / Oenanthe hispanica), Red-legged Partridge (Perdiz Roja / Alectoris rufa), Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra) and Rock Sparrow (Gorrión Chillón / Petronia petronia).
Pam and John at Argus spot.

Geranium Argus (Eumedonia eumedon) female.

Geranium Argus (Eumedonia eumedon) female.

After quite a long time watching the Thrushes and other species we headed back along the track to a spot where we were again going to try and get better views of the uncommon Geranium Argus (Eumedonia eumedon) butterfly x1, we parked and walked to the very small area that I have recorded this species and we luckily had a female that behaved better than the other day even though it was much windier.
Red-billed Chough (Chova Piquirroja / Pyrrhocorax pyrrhocorax) immatures.
Another view from the crags track.
We again spent quite a while here and added
Crag Martin (Avión Roquero / Ptyonoprogne rupestris), Black Redstart (Colirrojo Tizón / Phoenicurus ochruros), Linnet (Pardillo Común / Carduelis cannabina), Jackdaw (Grajilla / Corvus monedula), Clouded Yellow (Colias corceua) x3, Wall Brown (Lasiommata megera) x1, Meadow Brown (Maniola jurtina) x4, Spanish Marbled White (Melanargia ines) x2 and Erodium cheilanthifolium, Bitting Stonecrop (Sedum acre), Kidney Vetch (Anthyllis vulneraria), Common Snapdragon (Antirrhinum major), Cliffhanger (Chaenorhinum villosum) and Ramping Fumitory (Fumaria capreolata).
Cardinal Fritillary (Argynnis pandora).
Cardinal Fritillary (Argynnis pandora).
Southern Blue (Polyommatus celina).
Our next stop on the way down was at Charca del Negro where we had
Cardinal Fritillary (Argynnis pandora) x1, Small Skipper (Thymelicus sylvestris) x8, Southern Blue (Polyommatus celina) x2, Small Copper (Lycaena phlaeas) x11, Painted Lady (Vanessa cardui) x2, Blue / Common Emperor (Anax imperator), Blue-rock Thrush (Roquero Solitario / Monticola solitarius), Blue-rock Thrush (Roquero Solitario / Monticola solitarius) and Rock Bunting (Escribano Montesino / Emberiza cia).
Black-eared Wheatear (Collalba Rubia / Oenanthe hispanica) male.
Black-eared Wheatear (Collalba Rubia / Oenanthe hispanica) female.
In the dell a little further down we spent a while looking for butterflies and we found a good number for the first time on this trip and added
Bath White (Pontia daplidice) x2, Iberian Marbled White (Melanargia lachesis) x5, Red-underwing Skipper (Spialia sertorius) x2, Provence Orange-tip (Anthocharis euphenodes) x2 and Southern Brown Argus (Aricia cramera) x4.
Ocellated Lizard (Timon lepidus).
Ocellated Lizard (Timon lepidus).
Our last stop was down at the mddle Quarry, on the way down we had a very smart Ocellated Lizard (Timon lepidus) sat right in the middle of the track but unlike most of them which shoot off at high speed it sat there and allowed me to get some close up shots.
Small Copper (Lycaena phlaeas).
We parked and walked down the hill adding Iberian  Magpie (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cooki), Barn Swallow (Golondrina Común / Hirundo rustica), Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus), Sardinian (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala) and Dartford Warbler (Curruca Rabilarga / Sylvia undata), Small Copper x3, Small White (Pieris rapae) x4, False Mallow Skipper (Carcharodus tripolinus) x2, Spanish Gatekeeper (Pyronia bathsheba) x17 and lots of Panoptes Blue (Pseudophilotes panoptes) x12.
John and his Gambas.
Later in the Evening we went down to 3 Calles and had some food and John was over the moon with his Gambas Pil-Pil which he said was the best he had ever had.

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