Friday 10 March 2023

El Temple, Cacín Valley and Huétor Fields, Granada Province, Spain

A day out with Maia and her Mom.
Ebird List to follow.

Black-winged Kite (Elanio Común / Elanus caeruleus).
I met Maia and her Mom at the Cortijo de Tajar and then we headed off up the motorway towards Granada and then went out on to the tracks to the south of the A92, on the way we started the day list off with two Black-winged Kites (Elanio Común / Elanus caeruleus) at two different spots and Red-rumped Swallow (Golondrina Dáurica / Hirundo daurica).
Black-winged Kite (Elanio Común / Elanus caeruleus).
Once we were out on the main site we added
Blackcap (Curruca Capirotada / Sylvia atricailla), Woodpigeon (Paloma Torcaz / Columba palumbus), Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra), Crested Lark (Cogujada / Galerida cristata), Collared Dove (Tórtola Turca / Streptopelia decaocto), Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor), Goldfinch (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis) and Greenfinch (Verderón Común / Carduelis chloris).
Black-winged Kite (Elanio Común / Elanus caeruleus).
We parked on the track side and from here we had great views of a male Woodchat Shrike (Alcaudón Común / Lanius senator), several Stone Curlew (Alcaraván Común / Burhinus oedicnemus), Black Redstart (Colirrojo Tizón / Phoenicurus ochruros), Iberian Grey Shrike (Alcaudón Real Meridional / Lanius meridionalis), Linnet (Pardillo Común / Carduelis cannabina), Red-legged Partridge (Perdiz Roja / Alectoris rufa), Barn Swallow (Golondrina Común / Hirundo rustica), Common Chaffinch (Pinzón Vulgar / Fringilla coelebs), Common Chiffchaff (Mosquitero Común / Phylloscopus collybita), Common Magpie (Urraca / Pica pica) and a calling Great Spotted Cuckoo (Crialo Europeo / Clamator gladarius).
Some fuzzy shots of some of the Black-bellied Sandgrouse (Ganga Ortega / Pterocles orientalis).
We continued on out on to the larger area of fields seeing Western Dappled (Euchloe crameri) x8 and Small White (Pieris rapae) x1, Clouded Yellow (Colias corceua) x2, Thekla Lark (Cogujada Montesina / Galerida theklae), Northern Wheatear (Collalba Gris / Oenanthe oenanthe), Meadow Pipit (Bisbita Pratense / Anthus pratensis), Little Owl (Mochuelo Europeo / Athene noctua), Calandra Lark (Calandria / Melanocorypha calandra), Common Kestrel (Cernicalo Vulgar / Falco tinnunculus), Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata) and Hoopoe (Abubilla / Upupa epops).
Maia and her Mom watching Black-bellied Sandgrouse (Ganga Ortega / Pterocles orientalis).

We dropped down to the mid road and then out onto another track where we had distant views of at least 14 Black-bellied Sandgrouse (Ganga Ortega / Pterocles orientalis) and 2 more Black-winged Kites.
Further along the road we turned off again and took to the tracks again adding Spanish (Gorrión Moruno / Passer hispaniolensis) and Rock Sparrow (Gorrión Chillón / Petronia petronia), Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus), Song Thrush (Zorzal Común / Turdus philomelos), Lesser Kestrel (Cernicola Primilla / Falco naumanni), 3x Common Buzzards (Busardo Ratonero / Buteo buteo) 2 of which were seen mobbing a male Marsh Harrier (Aguilucho Lagunero Occidental / Circus aeruginosus),  Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula) and Iberian Scarce Swallowtail (Iphiclides feisthameli).
Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra).
We left the fields and stopped to collect a Sandwich at a bar in Ventas de Huelma and then headed out towards the Cacín Valley, on the way we saw more Common Buzzards,  a Sparrowhawk (Gavilán Común / Accipiter nisus), 3x Iberian Green Woodpeckers (Pito Real / Picus sharpei) one which I saw briefly but the others were only heard and remained out of sight unfortunately.
Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra).
We dropped down into the Valley and went down to the gorge finding Blue-rock Thrush (Roquero Solitario / Monticola solitarius), Crag (Avión Roquero / Ptyonoprogne rupestris) and House Martins (Avión Común / Delichon urbica), Sardinian Warbler (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala), Wren (Chochin / Troglodytes troglodytes), Robin (Petirrojo Europeo / Erithacus rubecula) and later we went back up the Valley to the Contra-embalse, on the way we had Mistle Thrush (Zorzal Charlo / Turdus viscivorus) and at the Lake we also saw Mallard (Anade Azulón / Anas platyrhynchos), Northern Shoveler (Pato Cuchara / Anas clypeata), Eurasian Coot (Focha Común / Fulica atra), Common Moorhen (Gallineta Común / Gallinulas chloropus), 2x Marsh Harriers, 4x Black-winged Stilts (Ciguenela Común / Himantopus himantopus), 2x Great Cormorants (Cormorán Grande / Phalacrocroax carbo) and a good number of Vagrant Emperors (Anax ephippiger) around 25.
Iberian Scarce Swallowtail (Iphiclides feisthameli).
A bit further up the valley we stopped in the Pine woodlands where we added two more new species to Maia's list which were Common Crossbill (Piquituerto Común / Loxia curvirostra) and Crested Tit (Herrerillo Capuchino / Parus cristatus).
We popped in to the Cliffs below Moraleda but we did not find anything new so we headed back to Huétor Fields finding a couple of Little Bustards (Sisón Común / Tetrax tetrax) one of which was a very smart Male and another 2x Black-winged Kites before returning to the hotel.

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