Tuesday, 21 April 2015

Arroyo de Marin with John and Jenny

Tuesday 21 April

Great to be back home again and some good birding in the offing.  What more could I ask for than to receive another report from John and Jenny to keep me up to date with what's about and where.

Arroyo del Marin  20 April

A beautiful Spring day with a few breezes.

Another grand day so we decided to go on a search for Hawfinches at the local beauty spot called Arroyo del Marin, this is a very well known spot for them and Nightingales. 

As we stopped to unload our binos and cameras, Nightingales were singing as was a Sardinian and Cetti´s Warbler.  Lots of Goldfinches about as well as Spotless Starlings and a few Collared Doves.  We drove down to our usual parking area we noted Serins, Blackbirds, Robins, Wrens and as we parked up a Common Cuckoo was 

Male Blue Rock Thrush Monticola solitarius (PHOTO: John Wainwright)
Walking the back path and upstream we found Nuthatch, Blue and Great Tits and Greater Spotted Woodpecker. Lots of butterflies about especially Large Whites, Clouded Yellows, Provence Orange Tip, Speckled Wood, Holly Blue, Cleopatras and Spanish Festoon. Getting back to our avian species we saw more Blackbirds, Robins, Wrens and  a couple of Greenfinches.

Spanish Festoon Zerynthia rumina  (PHOTO: John Wainwright)

Returning to the car I looked down and saw an adult Ladder Snake just over a metre long; it stayed long enough for us to get some great photos. Then wandering downstream we found Hawfinches, Chough, Bee-eaters, a Rock Bunting, Stonechats, Sparrowhawk,Chaffinches and a Short-toed Treecreeper.  As I walked back to the car I could hear a Wryneck calling and finally found him on top of the old skeletal tree just past the ruin.

The metre-long Ladder Snake Rhinechis scalaris (PHOTO: John Wainwright)
Again back at the car I could hear a Blue Rock Thrush singing and found him on the upstream track on top of a rock face.  The Common Cuckoo was flying along the ridge above and to the left of the former, and while I looked again at the Blue Rock Thrush, two Hawfinches flew through my line of vision and above me.  I just managed a very quick snap (hence the quality) of a female Pied Flycatcher.

Moving down to the ford we located another three Hawfinches, a Yellow Wagtail (iberiae), Nightingales, Long-tailed, Great and Coal Tit, Wren, Serins, Red-legged Partridges, Nuthatch and Chaffinches.  The Wryneck was calling quite regularly now, but no more sightings. Then two Spanish Ibex were noted and only two slender stalks of the Man Orchid Aceras anthropophorum remained from the river flood clearance.

Man Orchid Aceras anthropophorum (PHOTO: John Wainwright)

Great report John and lots of exciting birds to look forward to when I next visit this site.  Good to read that the Nightingales and Pied Flycatchers are back along with, possibly, over-wintering Wrynecks but, as yet, presumably no sign of a golden Oriole.  And what about all those Hawfinches!

Distant record shot of Pied Flycatcher Ficedula hypoleuca  (PHOTO: John Wainwright)

Check out the accompanying website at http://www.birdingaxarquia.weebly.com for the latest sightings, photographs and additional information.

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