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Saturday 16 April 2022

Sierra Martilla, Zagra, Garanada Province, Spain.

A few hours amongst the medieval necropolis of Sierra Martilla.
 
Iberian Scarce Swallowtail (Iphiclides feisthameli).
We all headed out for a walk around the medieval necropolis's and Dolmen's up on Sierra Martilla, there were lots of wild flowers in bloom all the way around the site including Bladder Campion (Silene vulgaris), Brown Bluebell (Dipcadi serotinum), Southern Knapweed (Centaurea pullata), Ramping Fumitory (Fumaria capreolata), White Asphodel (Asphodelus macrocarpus), Rough Poppy (Papaver hybridum), Wild Clary (Salvia verbenaca), Tassel Hyacinth (Leopoldia comosa), Star of Bethlehem (Ornithogalum baeticum), Red Vetchling (Lathyrus cicera), Ox-eye Daisy (Leucanthemum vulgare), Lesser Snapdragon (Misopates orontium), Purple Bugloss (Echium plantagineum), Mallow-leaved Convolvulus (Convolvulus althaeoides), Chaenorrhinum villosum, Corn Poppy (Papaver rhoeas) and Cloven Petalled Campion (Silene colorata).
White Asphodel (Asphodelus macrocarpus).

White Asphodel (Asphodelus macrocarpus).
Field Marigold (Calendula arvensis), Cloven Petalled Campion (Silene colorata), Lesser Snapdragon (Misopates orontium) and Ox-eye Daisy (Leucanthemum vulgare).

Lesser Snapdragon (Misopates orontium).
Ramping Fumitory (Fumaria capreolata).
Chaenorrhinum villosum.
Rough Poppy (Papaver hybridum).
Linaria tristris.
We also saw several patches of Orchids, the commonest were
Yellow Bee Orchid (Ophrys lutea) but we also found a couple of dozen spikes of the stunning Mirror Orchid (Ophrys speculum).
Yellow Bee Orchid (Ophrys lutea).
Mirror Orchid (Ophrys speculum).
Butterflies included Wall Brown (Lasiommata megera) x4, Swallowtail (Papilio machaon) x1 and Iberian Scarce Swallowtail (Iphiclides feisthameli) x2, Cleopatra (Gonepteryx cleopatra) x2, Clouded Yellow (Colias corceua) x8, Bath White (Pontia daplidice) x1, Holly Blue (Celastrina argiolus) x3, Large White (Pieris brassicae) x2, Painted Lady (Vanessa cardui) x5, Red Admiral (Vanessa atalanta) x1, Small Heath (Coenonympha pamphilus) x7, Small Copper (Lycaena phlaeas) x2, Small White (Pieris rapae) x4, Provence Orange-tip (Anthocharis euphenodes) x2, Southern Brown Argus (Aricia cramera) x1 and Speckled Wood (Pararge aegeria) x2 as well as a singles of 6719 Nomophila noctuella (Rush Veneer) and Hummingbird Hawkmoth (Macroglossum stellatarum).
Having a rest halfway out.
Steve getting some shots of a Iberian Scarce Swallowtail (Iphiclides feisthameli).
Birds seen during the walk included
Blue (Herrerillo Común / Parus caeruleus) and Great Tit (Carbonera Común / Parus major), Sardinian Warbler (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala), Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula), Hoopoe (Abubilla / Upupa epops), Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus), Hawfinch (Picogordo / Coccotraustes coccotrauetes), Iberian  Magpie (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cooki), Goldfinch (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis) and a singing male Blue-rock Thrush (Roquero Solitario / Monticola solitarius).
Shield-bug Species.

Later in the evening we sat out on the terrace for a while and after eating we heard both
Little Owls (Mochuelo Europeo / Athene noctua) and Red-necked Nightjars (Chotacabras Cuellirrojo / Caprimulgus ruficollis)  calling from the Olives.
Catching up with the list for the day.

 

Friday 15 April 2022

Huétor Fields, Granada Province, Spain.

An afternoon walk with Steve.

Corn Poppies (Papaver rhoeas) and Field mustard (Brassica rapa).

Lynn, Steve, Adam and Larna arrived for a few days stay and after they got settled in Steve and I went for a walk down by the Arroyo Vilano and out as far as the railway bridge, highlights were a male Montagu's Harrier (Aguilucho Cenizo / Circus pygargus), European Bee-eater (Abejaruco Común / Merops apiaster), Nightingale (Ruisenor Común / Luscinia megarhynchos), Whinchat (Tarabilla Nortena / Saxicola rubetra), Spanish (Yellow) Wagtail (Lavandera Boyera / Motacilla flava iberiae) and a Bath White (Pontia daplidice).
Bath White (Pontia daplidice).

Steve getting some shots of a Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra).

Spanish (Yellow) Wagtail (Lavandera Boyera / Motacilla flava iberiae).

 

Wednesday 13 April 2022

Rio Jándula and La Caracola, Jaen Province and Hacho, Granada Province, Spain.

A crack at the Otters and another go at the Woodpeckers.

Looking down the Rio Jándula.
We had breakfast a little earlier this morning and went down to the Rio Jándula and drove straight down to the small bridge near the Dam, almost straight away we saw two Otters (Nutria / Lutra lutra) but they were already under the bridge and heading down the river so we only got distant views.
Otter (Nutria / Lutra lutra).
In the same area we had views of House Martin (Avión Común / Delichon urbica), Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula), Iberian (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cooki) and Common Magpie (Urraca / Pica pica), Cetti's Warbler (Ruisenor Bastardo / Cettia cetti), White Wagtail (Lavandera Blanca / Montacilla alba), Nightingale (Ruisenor Común / Luscinia megarhynchos), Wren (Chochin / Troglodytes troglodytes), Greenfinch (Verderón Común / Carduelis chloris), Goldfinch (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis), Woodpigeon (Paloma Torcaz / Columba palumbus), a calling Wryneck (Torcecuello / Jynx torquilla), Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor) and several flocks of Great Cormorants (Cormorán Grande / Phalacrocroax carbo) which flew over in formation.
Gum Cistus (Cistus ladanifer).

Silene psammitis ??????

Silene psammitis ??????

Spotted Rockrose (Tuberaria guttata).
Steve went for a walk down stream a short way and I walked up the ruin on the hill on the far shore, on the way I saw several Red-rumped Swallows (Golondrina Dáurica / Hirundo daurica) and a Sand Martin (Avión Zapador / Riparia riparia) which were sat looking cold on an overhead wire.
Lesser-spotted Woodpecker (Pico Menor / Dryobates minor).

Lesser-spotted Woodpecker (Pico Menor / Dryobates minor).

Lesser-spotted Woodpecker (Pico Menor / Dryobates minor).

There were also quite a few wildflowers in bloom including Bladder Campion (Silene vulgaris), Blue Hound's Tongue (Cynoglossum creticum), Brown Bluebell (Dipcadi serotinum), Common Asphodel (Asphodelus aestivus), lof what I think could be Silene psammitis, Tassel Hyacinth (Leopoldia comosa), Wild Clary (Salvia verbenaca), White Rockrose (Helianthemum apenninum), Shepherds Needles (Scandix pecten-veneris), Scarlet Pimpernel (Anagallis arvensis) and Purple Bugloss (Echium plantagineum).
House Sparrow (Gorrión Común / Passer domesticus).
Sardinian Warbler (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala) male.
We dropped back to the main road and parked near the Área recreativa del Encinarejo where we were soon watching a nice male
Lesser-spotted Woodpecker (Pico Menor / Dryobates minor) which showed well for quite a while which was calling and drumming in a tall Eucalyptus.
Iberian  Magpie (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cooki).
Iberian  Magpie (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cooki).
In the same area we had views of
Golden Oriole (Oropéndola / Oriolus oriolus), Short-toed Treecreeper (Agateador Común / Certhia brachydactyla), Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus), Robin (Petirrojo Europeo / Erithacus rubecula), Mistle Thrush (Zorzal Charlo / Turdus viscivorus), Iberian Green Woodpecker (Pito Real / Picus sharpei), Jackdaw (Grajilla / Corvus monedula), Hoopoe (Abubilla / Upupa epops), Great Tit (Carbonera Común / Parus major), European Bee-eater (Abejaruco Común / Merops apiaster), Crag Martin (Avión Roquero / Ptyonoprogne rupestris), Common Cuckoo (Cuco Común / Cuculus canorus), Cirl Bunting (Escribano Soteno / Emberiza cirlus), Blackcap (Curruca Capirotada / Sylvia atricailla) and a calling Scops Owl (Autillo Europeo / Otus scops).
Nuthatch (Trepador Azul / Sitta europaea).
Nuthatch (Trepador Azul / Sitta europaea).
We returned to La Caracola and spent a couple of hours in the hide where we picked up Sardinian Warbler (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala), Nuthatch (Trepador Azul / Sitta europaea), Blue (Herrerillo Común / Parus caeruleus), Crested (Herrerillo Capuchino / Parus cristatus) and Long-tailed Tit (Mito / Aegithalos caudatus) and Common Chaffinch (Pinzón Vulgar / Fringilla coelebs) but it was quiet so we packed up.

We left La Caracola and I drove Steve's car back to Huétor and then Steve headed off home and I had a walk along the fields but was equally quiet and I only added
Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra), Spanish (Yellow) Wagtail (Lavandera Boyera / Motacilla flava iberiae), Turtle Dove (Tórtola Europea / Streptopelia turtur), Little Ringed Plover (Chorlitejo Chico / Charadrius dubius) and Zitting Cisticola (Buitrón / Cisticola juncidis).
Italian Man Orchid (Orchis Italica).
Italian Man Orchid (Orchis Italica).
I went home and unloaded my kit before going up to Cerro Hacho to look for some spikes of
Italian Man Orchid (Orchis Italica) that friends Linda and Jan had found a few days earlier on a walk there.
Pink Butterfly Orchid (Orchis papilionacea).
Yellow Bee Orchid (Ophrys lutea).
Giant Orchid (Himanthoglosum Robertiana).
I checked the area and soon found 5 spikes of this stunning plant which was new for me at this site, I also saw
Pink Butterfly (Orchis papilionacea), Yellow Bee (Ophrys lutea), Mirror (Ophrys speculum),  Giant (Himanthoglosum Robertiana) and Southern Early Purple Orchids (Orchis olbienis).

Tuesday 12 April 2022

Sierra Morena, Andujar, Jaen Province, Spain.

Some more Photo's of our Lynx encounter. 
Iberian Lynx (lince iberico / Lynx pardina).
 
Well this encounter was such a great privilage I think they needs a page of photographs to themselves. 






Sierra Morena, Rio Jándula and La Caracola, Jaen Province, Spain.

A day that we won't forget for a very long time.

Nuthatch (Trepador Azul / Sitta europaea).
We started by making a short visit to the hide in the garden at La Caracola, it was fairly quiet but we did see Nuthatch (Trepador Azul / Sitta europaea), Iberian  Magpie (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cooki), Greenfinch (Verderón Común / Carduelis chloris), Common Chaffinch (Pinzón Vulgar / Fringilla coelebs), House Sparrow (Gorrión Común / Passer domesticus), Barn Swallow (Golondrina Común / Hirundo rustica), Golden Oriole (Oropéndola / Oriolus oriolus), Great Tit (Carbonera Común / Parus major) and Hoopoe (Abubilla / Upupa epops).
Nuthatch (Trepador Azul / Sitta europaea).
Greenfinch (Verderón Común / Carduelis chloris).
Champagne Orchid (Orchis champagneuxii).
We returned to the car and drove out to the main area where I have seen the
Iberian Lynx (lince iberico / Lynx pardina) several times in the past but as it was not the best time of the year we were not expecting to do very well, how wrong we were.
Little Owl (Mochuelo Europeo / Athene noctua).
On the drive out to the spot we saw our only Orchid of the trip, around 30 spikes of Champagne Orchids (Orchis champagneuxii) as well as Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus), Common Magpie (Urraca / Pica pica), Woodlark (Totovia / Lullula arborea), European Bee-eater (Abejaruco Común / Merops apiaster), Sardinian Warbler (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala), Red-legged Partridge (Perdiz Roja / Alectoris rufa), Jay (Arrendajo / Garrulus glandarius), Blue (Herrerillo Común / Parus caeruleus) and Crested Tit (Herrerillo Capuchino / Parus cristatus), Little Owl (Mochuelo Europeo / Athene noctua) and a flyby Great Spotted Cuckoo (Crialo Europeo / Clamator gladarius).
My first view of todays Iberian Lynx (lince iberico / Lynx pardina).
We reached the parking spot and then spent some time watching the slopes above and below us adding Iberian Green Woodpecker (Pito Real / Picus sharpei), Griffon Vulture (Bultre Leonado / Gyps fulvus), Iberian Imperial Eagle (Aguila Imperial Ibérica / Aguila adalberti) and Dartford Warbler (Curruca Rabilarga / Sylvia undata) before we noticed a small group of people watching something in the scrub below the road.
Iberian Lynx (lince iberico / Lynx pardina) stalking the dog.

Steve dropped down to the track and went to see what they were looking at whilst I stayed at the spot scanning the bushes, after a while they wlked back away from my spot but another guy came in from the opposite direction walking a dog and just after passing me he beckoned me over to him and said he had seen a Lynx, a few seconds later the male jumped up on to a big rock right infront of us checking for something in a large crack.
European Black Vulture (Buitre Negro / Aegypius monachus).
Kingfisher (Martin Pescador / Alcedo atthis) x2.
A couple of minutes later the others joined us and the female Lynx joined the male on the roack and showed incredably well for the next 20 or so minutes, at one point the male saw the small dog and stalked it coming in to just a few meters, absolutly amazing experiance.
Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor) male.
Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor) female.
Iberian  Magpie (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cooki).
After a while the two animals moved off into the next cutting but still gave superb views until they headed off into the scrub and away so we decided to head off the site and down to the Rio Jándula where we parked and had a walk around near the Área recreativa del Encinarejo where we again heard but did not see the Lesser-spotted Woodpecker (Pico Menor / Dryobates minor) and also found Kingfishers (Martin Pescador / Alcedo atthis), Golden Oriole (Oropéndola / Oriolus oriolus), Cetti's Warbler (Ruisenor Bastardo / Cettia cetti), Cirl Bunting (Escribano Soteno / Emberiza cirlus), Grey Heron (Garza Real / Ardea cinerea) and a calling Scops Owl (Autillo Europeo / Otus scops).
Long-tailed Tit (Mito / Aegithalos caudatus).
Long-tailed Tit (Mito / Aegithalos caudatus).
Crested Tit (Herrerillo Capuchino / Parus cristatus).
Crested Tit (Herrerillo Capuchino / Parus cristatus).
We headed further up the river seeing a couple of European Black Vultures (Buitre Negro / Aegypius monachus), White Wagtail (Lavandera Blanca / Montacilla alba) and by the bridge House Martin (Avión Común / Delichon urbica), Short-toed Treecreeper (Agateador Común / Certhia brachydactyla), Wryneck (Torcecuello / Jynx torquilla), Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula), Jackdaw (Grajilla / Corvus monedula), Mistle Thrush (Zorzal Charlo / Turdus viscivorus) and Blackcap (Curruca Capirotada / Sylvia atricailla).
Blue Tit (Herrerillo Común / Parus caeruleus).

Blue Tit (Herrerillo Común / Parus caeruleus).

Great Tit (Carbonera Común / Parus major).

Other species seen included Perez's Frog (Rana Común / Pelophylax perezi), Clouded Yellow (Colias corceua), Common Orange-tip (Anthocharis cardamines), Rabbit (Conejo / Oryctolagus cuniculus), Brown Bluebell (Dipcadi serotinum), Common Fumitory (Fumaria officinalis), Ramping Fumitory (Fumaria capreolata), Corn Poppy (Papaver rhoeas), French Lavender (Lavandula stoechas), Grey-leaved Cistus (Cistus albidus), Gum Cistus (Cistus ladanifer), Mallow-leaved Convolvulus (Convolvulus althaeoides) and Purple Bugloss (Echium plantagineum).
Nuthatch (Trepador Azul / Sitta europaea).

Nuthatch (Trepador Azul / Sitta europaea).

Greenfinch (Verderón Común / Carduelis chloris).

Later we headed back to La Caracola where we again went into the hide and had
Great Spotted Woodpecker (Pico Picapinos / Dendrocopos major), Long-tailed Tit (Mito / Aegithalos caudatus), Nightingale (Ruisenor Común / Luscinia megarhynchos) and Robin (Petirrojo Europeo / Erithacus rubecula).