Friday 12 April 2024

El Temple, Cacín Valley, Sierra de Loja and Huetor Fields, Granada Province, Spain.

A days birding around the distant and local Patch.
Ebird List for El Temple.
Ebird List for near Ventas de Huelma.
Ebird List for Contraembalse de Bermejalis.
Ebird List for Cacín Valley.
Ebird List for Sierra de Loja / Charca del Negro.
Ebird List for Sierra de Loja, Middle Quarry.
Ebird List for Huétor Fields.

Little Bustard (Sisón Común / Tetrax tetrax) in the early morning sun.
Jeff and I started the day out on the El Temple area, on the way in we had a couple of Little Bustards (Sisón Común / Tetrax tetrax) in flight, a smart Short-toed Eagle (Culebrera Europeo / Circaetus gallicus) which sat on one of the tall pylons and Greater Short-toed Lark (Terrera Común / Calandrella brachydactyla) which flew up off the track, we parked at the crossroads of the site seeing and hearing Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra), Calandra (Calandria / Melanocorypha calandra) and Crested Lark (Cogujada / Galerida cristata), Woodpigeon (Paloma Torcaz / Columba palumbus), Greater Short-toed Lark (Terrera Común / Calandrella brachydactyla), Common Magpie (Urraca / Pica pica), Common Quail (Codorniz Común / Coturnix coturnix) and Red-legged Partridge (Perdiz Roja / Alectoris rufa).
Common Pochard (Porrón Común / Aythya ferina), Mallard (Anade Azulón / Anas platyrhynchos) and the male Tufted Duck (Porrón Monudo / Aythya fuligula).
We continued on up the track and then turned off and make our way back to the main road through the site, on this section we saw Stone Curlew (Alcaraván Común / Burhinus oedicnemus) which was a lifer for Jeff, Marsh Harrier (Aguilucho Lagunero Occidental / Circus aeruginosus), Hoopoe (Abubilla / Upupa epops), Spotless Starling (Estornino Negro / Sturnus unicolor) and Zitting Cisticola (Buitrón / Cisticola juncidis).
Booted Eagle (Aguililla Calzada / Hieraaetus pennatus).
Booted Eagle (Aguililla Calzada / Hieraaetus pennatus).
Booted Eagle (Aguililla Calzada / Hieraaetus pennatus).
We crossed on to the fields on the other side of the roads where we parked and scanned an area finding 4
Black-bellied Sandgrouse (Ganga Ortega / Pterocles orientalis), more Stone Curlews and Little Bustards, Northern Wheatear (Collalba Gris / Oenanthe oenanthe), Little Owl (Mochuelo Europeo / Athene noctua), Common Kestrel (Cernicalo Vulgar / Falco tinnunculus) and a second Short-toed Eagle.
Western Black-eared Wheatear (Collalba Rubia / Oenanthe hispanica).
Western Black-eared Wheatear (Collalba Rubia / Oenanthe hispanica).
We moved on again and went out on to another area of fields where we saw
Booted Eagle (Aguililla Calzada / Hieraaetus pennatus), Great Spotted Cuckoo (Crialo Europeo / Clamator gladarius) and as we drove off the site we added Mallard (Anade Azulón / Anas platyrhynchos), Nightingale (Ruisenor Común / Luscinia megarhynchos), Blackbird (Mirlo Común / Turdus merula), Cetti's Warbler (Ruisenor Bastardo / Cettia cetti), Blackcap (Curruca Capirotada / Sylvia atricailla), Collared (Tórtola Turca / Streptopelia decaocto) and Turtle Dove (Tórtola Europea / Streptopelia turtur), House Sparrow (Gorrión Común / Passer domesticus), Goldfinch (Jilguero / Carduelis carduelis) and Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus).
Spanish Ibex (Cabra montés / Capra pyrenaica hispanica).
Once we were off the site we went for a coffee and picked up a sandwich for later and then headed off towards the Cacín Valley, on the way we made a stop by the Arroyo de los Frailes where we had another Great-spotted Cuckoo, Woodpigeon, Collared Dove, a Stone Curlew, Little Owl, European Bee-eater (Abejaruco Común / Merops apiaster), Iberian Green Woodpecker (Pito Real / Picus sharpei) x2, Woodchat Shrike (Alcaudón Común / Lanius senator), Great Tit (Carbonera Común / Parus major), Crested Lark (Cogujada / Galerida cristata), Red-rumped Swallow (Golondrina Dáurica / Hirundo daurica), Rock Sparrow (Gorrión Chillón / Petronia petronia), Greenfinch (Verderón Común / Carduelis chloris) and Goldfinch.
Spanish Festoon (Zerynthia rumina).
Spanish Festoon (Zerynthia rumina).
We continued on and then went up the Valley to the Contra-embalse de Bermejalis, whilst there we saw and heard a Mallard with at least 9 ducklings, Common Pochard (Porrón Común / Aythya ferina), a male Tufted Duck (Porrón Monudo / Aythya fuligula) which I was surprised to see was still on the lake, Common Cuckoo (Cuco Común / Cuculus canorus), Common Moorhen (Gallineta Común / Gallinulas chloropus), Eurasian Coot (Focha Común / Fulica atra), a couple of calling but unseen Water Rails (Rascón Europeo / Rallus aquaticus), Black-winged Stilt (Ciguenela Común / Himantopus himantopus) x2, 2 more pale morph Booted Eagles (Aguililla Calzada / Hieraaetus pennatus), a pair of Marsh Harriers, Iberian  Magpie (Rabilargo / Cyanopica cooki), Common Cuckoo (Cuco Común / Cuculus canorus), Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata), Reed Warbler (Carricero Común / Acrocephalus scrpaceus), Barn Swallow (Golondrina Común / Hirundo rustica), Corn Bunting (Triguero / Emberiza calandra) and Cettis Warbler.
Iris Subbiflora.
We went a short way down the road to the bridge across the Rio Cacín and did a walk checking the bridge and along the road toward El Turro finding Long-tailed (Mito / Aegithalos caudatus), Coal (Carbonero Garrapinos / Parus ater) and Great Tit (Carbonera Común / Parus major), Bonelli's Warbler (Mosquitero Papialbo / Phylloscopus bonelli), Blackcap, Sardinian Warbler (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala), Short-toed Treecreeper (Agateador Común / Certhia brachydactyla), Wren (Chochin / Troglodytes troglodytes), Mistle Thrush (Zorzal Charlo / Turdus viscivorus), Robin (Petirrojo Europeo / Erithacus rubecula), Nightingale (Ruisenor Común / Luscinia megarhynchos), Grey Wagtail (Lavandera Cascadena / Motacilla cinerea), Common Chaffinch (Pinzón Vulgar / Fringilla coelebs), Serin (Verdecillo / Serinus serinus) and Perez's Frog (Rana Común / Pelophylax perezi).
Blue Hedgehog Broom (Erinacea anthyllis).
We moved up the valley and made a stop in amongst the pines where we sat and scanned a wooded ridge whilst we had our sandwich, we added
Common Crossbill (Piquituerto Común / Loxia curvirostra) and Woodlark (Totovia / Lullula arborea).
Wild Tulip (Tulipa sylvestris).
Wild Tulip (Tulipa sylvestris).
Further up the valley we checked the crags adding just Crag Martin (Avión Roquero / Ptyonoprogne rupestris) before we headed off to Sierra de Loja, we drove up the crags seeing Yellow Bee Orchid (Ophrys lutea), Viola dementriaWild Clary (Salvia verbenaca), Tassel Hyacinth (Leopoldia comosa), Spring Cress (Arabis verna), Purple Bugloss (Echium plantagineum), Coal Tit and Red-billed Chough (Chova Piquirroja / Pyrrhocorax pyrrhocorax) on the way up and once we were out on the flats we found Thekla Lark (Cogujada Montesina / Galerida theklae), Western Black-eared Wheatear (Collalba Rubia / Oenanthe hispanica), Sparrowhawk (Gavilán Común / Accipiter nisus), Iberian Grey Shrike, Common Redstart (Colirroja Real / Phoenicurus phoenicurus), Common Stonechat and at the far end of the area we picked up Black Redstart (Colirrojo Tizón / Phoenicurus ochruros), Black (Collalba Negra / Oenanthe leucura) and Northern Wheatear, Rock Bunting (Escribano Montesino / Emberiza cia), Rock Sparrow (Gorrión Chillón / Petronia petronia), Blue Hedgehog Broom (Erinacea anthyllis), Wild Peony (Paeonia broteri) and Spanish Ibex (Cabra montés / Capra pyrenaica hispanica).
Yellow Bee Orchid (Ophrys lutea).
On our way back down we made a stop at a small dell where we saw Spanish Festoon (Zerynthia rumina) and as we dropped down to the middle quarry we added Spectacled Warbler (Curruca Tomillera / Sylvia conspicillata) and Jeff also saw a large Ocellated Lizard (Timon lepidus).
Viola dementria.
Viola dementria.
Linaria species.
At the middle quarry we had views of Dartford Warbler (Curruca Rabilarga / Sylvia undata), Kidney Vetch (Anthyllis vulneraria), Wild Tulip (Tulipa sylvestris), Star of Bethlehem (Ornithogalum baeticum), Cloven Petalled Campion (Silene colorata), Buckler Mustard (Biscutella frutescens) and Provence Orange-tip (Anthocharis euphenodes). 
Looking to the South.

and out West.
Our final stop of the day was on Huétor Fields, main target was Sedge Warbler (Carricerin Común / Acrocephalus schoenobaenus) and we managed to hear a bird but it remained elusive, other species included Montagu's Harrier, Black-winged Kite (Elanio Común / Elanus caeruleus), Common Buzzard (Busardo Ratonero / Buteo buteo), Green Sandpiper (Andarrios Grande / Tringa ochropus), Little Ringed Plover (Chorlitejo Chico / Charadrius dubius), Common Swift (Vencejo Común / Apus apus), Woodchat Shrike (Alcaudón Común / Lanius senator), Melodious Warbler (Zarcero Común / Hippolais polyglotta), Crested Lark (Cogujada / Galerida cristata), Adonis Blue (Lysandra bellargus), Small Copper (Lycaena phlaeas), Clouded Yellow (Colias corceua), Western Dappled (Euchloe crameri) and Small White (Pieris rapae).
Adonis Blue (Lysandra bellargus).

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