Good weather, nice moments, some “first” of the season and a few pictures...
Have a look at the pictures and the complete list of the 102 species observed below!
Even though there was still a breeze at the beach late evening, the morning around El Chorro and the farmlands and afternoon in Fuente Piedra were much better than expected as far as the weather is concerned.
The first good moment of the day was the chase of a Stonechat by a hungry Iberian Grey Shrike. For stonechat lovers, I have to say that, after a few loops in the air, he knew how to avoid his pursuer’s attack and ended up sitting happily on his perch.
The second moment of the day took place at the Peñarrubia cliff. I went there in search for the Peregrine that I missed at El Chorro. I could soon spot the male that was patrolling the ridge. Then, I could see the always frustrating “stern” of a big raptor almost turning around the corner of the cliff. I had enough time to see its very white base of the tail and the white spots in the wings. It was a young Golden Eagle, maybe one of those that have been expelled from its parents’ territory at the beginning of the breeding season. I had already ticked the Golden Eagle at El Chorro but its presence made the Bonelli’s, which I was also missing, get out from somewhere in the cliff and go after the golden. But that was at the other end and could not either see or photograph it...
The first of the season were Gull-billed Tern at Fuente de Piedra, Reed Warbler at Zapata and Swift at the Mouth of the Guadalhorce.
I use to tell about my final rush for the 100 species at the end of these tours. I have felt a bit pressed in the last months as days were short and it was difficult to reach the target. But the aim of a birding trip is always to enjoy so, today, I just ticked the birds and took a few pictures but did not count them. Anyway, days are not long yet and I was a little short of time for my last walk around the mouth of the Guadalhorce to stop counting the ticks.
After a while sitting in front of the Laguna Grande, my last stage for the day, without any more new birds to tick, I decided to have a look at the list. The last ones, two Shelducks, were number... 99! There was still some light before dusk and I was missing some seagulls and beach waders so decided to have a look at the sea for some of them to show up. After some pictures to the waves while thinking where I would go to find a Little Owl, a lonely Sanderling saved my pride.
I still stopped at the Laguna Grande again because I had been trying to eat my dessert since lunchtime and a last Spoonbill landed roosting on one of the little islands to make bird 102 after a wonderful birding experience throughout Malaga province.
Why bird 102? Because I had forgotten to tick the Kentish Plovers when I first counted the birds!
Complete list of birds observed:
|1||Alpine Swift||Apus melba|
|3||Barn Swallow||Hirundo rustica|
|4||Black Redstart||Phoenicurus ochruros|
|5||Black Wheatear||Oenanthe leucura|
|7||Black-headed Gull||Chroicocephalus ridibundus|
|8||Black-necked Grebe||Podiceps nigricollis|
|9||Black-tailed Godwit||Limosa limosa|
|10||Black-winged Stilt||Himantopus himantopus|
|11||Bonelli’s Eagle||Aquila fasciata|
|12||Booted Eagle||Aquila pennata|
|13||Calandra Lark||Melanocorypha calandra|
|14||Cattle Egret||Bubulcus ibis|
|15||Cetti’s Warbler||Cettia cetti|
|19||Coal Tit||Periparus ater|
|20||Collared Dove||Streptopelia decaocto|
|21||Common Buzzard||Buteo buteo|
|22||Common Crossbill||Loxia curvirostra|
|23||Common Sandpiper||Actitis hypoleucos|
|26||Corn Bunting||Emberiza calandra|
|27||Crested Lark||Galerida cristata|
|28||Crested Tit||Lophophanes cristatus|
|29||Dartford Warbler||Sylvia undata|
|30||Ferruginous Duck||Aythya nyroca|
|34||Golden Eagle||Aquila chrysaetos|
|36||Great Crested Grebe||Podiceps cristatus|
|37||Great Tit||Parus major|
|38||Green Sandpiper||Tringa ochropus|
|41||Grey Heron||Ardea cinerea|
|42||Griffon Vulture||Gyps fulvus|
|43||Gull-billed Tern||Gelochelidon nilotica|
|45||House Martin||Delichon urbicum|
|46||House Sparrow||Passer domesticus|
|47||Iberian Grey Shrike||Lanius meridionalis|
|49||Kentish Plover||Charadrius alexandrinus|
|52||Lesser Black-backed Gull||Larus fuscus|
|53||Lesser Kestrel||Falco naumanni|
|55||Little Egret||Egretta garzetta|
|56||Little Grebe||Tachybaptus ruficollis|
|57||Little Ringed Plover||Charadrius dubius|
|59||Marsh Harrier||Circus aeruginosus|
|60||Meadow Pipit||Anthus pratensis|
|61||Mediterranean Gull||Larus melanocephalus|
|62||Monk Parakeet||Myiopsitta monachus|
|63||Montagu's Harrier||Circus pygargus|
|65||Peregrine Falcon||Falco peregrinus|
|68||Red-crested Pochard||Netta rufina|
|69||Red-legged Partridge||Alectoris rufa|
|70||Red-rumped Swallow||Cecropis daurica|
|72||Reed Warbler||Acrocephalus scirpaceus|
|73||Ringed Plover||Charadrius hiaticula|
|75||Rock Bunting||Emberiza cia|
|76||Rock Dove||Columba livia|
|79||Sandwhich Tern||Sterna sandvicensis|
|80||Sardinian Warbler||Sylvia melanocephala|
|83||Short-toed Treecreeper||Certhia brachydactyla|
|85||Spanish Sparrow||Passer hispaniolensis|
|88||Spotless Starling||Sturnus unicolor|
|91||Tawny Owl||Strix aluco|
|93||Thekla Lark||Galerida theklae|
|94||Western Subalpine Warbler||Sylvia inornata|
|95||White Stork||Ciconia ciconia|
|96||White Wagtail||Motacilla alba|
|97||White-headed Duck||Oxyura leucocephala|
|98||Wood Pigeon||Columba palumbus|
|99||Wood Sandpiper||Tringa glareola|
|101||Yellow Wagtail||Motacilla flava|
|102||Zitting Cisticola||Cisticola juncidis|
- Crested Tit (Lophophanes cristatus) Crested Tit (Lophophanes cristatus)
- Dartford Warbler (Sylvia undata) Dartford Warbler (Sylvia undata)
- Thekla Lark (Galerida theklae) Thekla Lark (Galerida theklae)
- Dark Bee Orchid (Ophrys fusca) Dark Bee Orchid (Ophrys fusca)
- Common Crossbill (Loxia curvirostra) Common Crossbill (Loxia curvirostra)
- A few domestic friends... A few domestic friends...
- Corn Bunting (Emberiza calandra) Corn Bunting (Emberiza calandra)
- Black-winged Stilts (Himantopus himantopus) Black-winged Stilts (Himantopus himantopus)
- Ruff (Philomachus pugnax) Ruff (Philomachus pugnax)
- Red-crested Pochards (Netta rufina) Red-crested Pochards (Netta rufina)
- Booted Eagle (Aquila pennata) Booted Eagle (Aquila pennata)
- Cattle Egret (Bubulcus ibis) Cattle Egret (Bubulcus ibis)
- Sandwich Tern and Mediterranean Gulls Sandwich Tern and Mediterranean Gulls
- Blackbird (Turdus merula) Blackbird (Turdus merula)
- Black-necked Grebe (Podiceps nigricollis) Black-necked Grebe (Podiceps nigricollis)
- Saline spray atmosphere at dusk Saline spray atmosphere at dusk
- My lonely Sandpiper, bird 100! My lonely Sandpiper, bird 100!