Wednesday, 13 May 2015

Laguna Dulce and Fuente de Piedra

Tuesday 12 May

A very pleasant start to the day as I drove over to the Lagna Dulce near Campillos to collect the latest supply of magazines for the Andalucia Bird Society and, at the same time, took the opportunity to check out both this water and then wander round to Fuente de Piedra before returning home.  The usual Thekla Larks and Serins as I descended the mountain and, upon arriving, I was already aware of the white mass on the laguna.  It would appear that hundreds of Flamingos had either turned up to feed or were on their summer holidays, perhaps due to the shortage of water at nearby Fuente.

Greater Flamingo Phoenicopterus roseus
In addition to the Flamingos, there was a good supply of Coots and no shortage of ducks.  The latter seemed to be many Common and Red-crested Pochards but also a few Gadwall and Mallard. Indeed, I even found a few Shelduck on the far side.  Very few grebes to be seen with just the single Black-necked and a couple of Little Grebes.  Around me I had feeding Goldfinches and House Sparrow with the ever-calling Cetti's Warbler.  Over the water, the occasional Black-headed Gull and a number of Gull-billed Terns put in an appearance with the occasional Barn Swallow and Common Swift.  Similarly, much searching eventually found a handful of Black-winged Stilts and a visit would not be the same without finding a Corn Bunting.

Then it was on round to Fuente de Piedra with a short stop at the Mirador de Cantarranas on the way.  The relatively short journey produced both Buzzard and Kestrel along with Serins, Spotless Starlings, Collared Dove and the first Hoopoe of the morning.  Cantarranas had very little different from the Dulce but I did find a small number of Avocets.

Ringed Plover Charadrius hiaticula
Entering the Fuente reserve I was surprised to still see water on the field to the left and this held a good number of waders in addition to more Coots and overhead feeding Gull-billed Terns, Barn Swallows and House Martins.  The majority of waders were either Ringed Plovers or Curlew Sandpipers, most of the latter in their summer plumage.  However, whilst there were also a couple of Little Ringed Plovers and the odd Dunlin to accompany the many Black-winged Stilts and Avocets the main attraction for me was the number of Little Stint still present.

Curlew Sandpiper Calidris ferruginata
Lots of Jackdaws about as I walked round the back to the laguneta and yet more Goldfinches and a Crested Lark.  A handful of Red-rumped Swallows were seen and a couple of Lapwing flew across the site.   In the near distance a number of Turtle Doves were calling and a Moorhen was found on the small pool.

Waders: Black-winged Stilt Himantopus himantopus; Ringed Plover Charadrius hiaticula; Curlew Sandpiper Calidris ferruginata; Little Stint Calidris minuta
Returning to the car I stopped once more at the flooded field and also added both Common Sandpiper and Redshank.  A Blackbird passed by and the Reed Warblers were in good voice before I found my first new bird for the year, a singing Great Reed Warbler.  To complete the morning, I had a Raven fly across the motorway as I made my way back to Casa Collado.

Birds seen:
Shelduck, Gadwall. Mallard, Red-crested Pochard, Pochard, Little Grebe, Black-necked Grebe, Flamingo, Buzzard, Kestrel, Moorhen, Coot, Black-winged Stilt, Avocet, Little Ringed Plover, Ringed Plover, Lapwing, Little Stint, Curlew Sandpiper, Dunlin, Redshank, Black-headed Gull, Yellow-legged Gull, Gull-billed Tern, Turtle Dove, Collared Dove, Swift, Hoopoe, Crested Lark, Thekla Lark, Barn Swallow, Red-rumped Swallow, House Martin, Blackbird, Cetti's Warbler, reed Warbler, Great Reed Warbler, Jackdaw, Raven, Spotless Starling, House Sparrow, Serin, Goldfinch, Corn Bunting.

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