Wednesday, 19 August 2015

Arroyo Marin, Archidona

19 August 2015

Leaving Mezquitilla with a couple of Common Swifts feeding above the main road, within the hour I was passed the "white elephant prison" and arriving at the Arroyo Marin just before Archidona. Entering the valley track I was immediately greeted by a number of Bee-eaters and managed to get a couple of quick photos through the windscreen.  Then, having decided to get out of the car for a better shot, I was suddenly confronted by another car right behind me so had to move on.  Indeed, this was the only other vehicle i came across all morning!

taking the first side track on the right I had more Bee-eaters along with a couple of Blackbirds and a male Blackcap.  A few Barn Swallows were feeding above and the bee-eaters were joined by a handful of Spotless Starlings on the distant wires whilst a small flock of Rock Doves took to the skies.  The dead weeds seemed to be providing plenty of food for the foraging Serins.

Bee-eaters Abejaruco Europeo Merops apiaster through the windscreen
Back onto the main track and down to the usual parking place in the shade near the ruined farm.  A good walk both up and down stream from the broken concrete bridge produced a number of species including Chaffinch, an out-of-place Rock Bunting, Blue Tit and a pair of Cirl Buntings. Returning downstream I had a lone Great Spotted Woodpecker, Robin, Collared Dove and clucking Red-legged Partridges nearby.  Over the hills a good-sized flock of Crag Martins were quartering the hillsides.

Cirl Bunting Escribano Soteno Emberiza cirius
Closer to the ruins were a small charm of Goldfinches and even a male Blue Rock Thrush on the roof of the ruined building.  A young Stonechat was in a nearby tree.  A drive down to the bridge only produced Great Tits and then it was time to make my way home picking up a trio of Azure-winged Magpies and Spotted Flycatcher before reaching the main road.

Distant Blue Rock Thrush  Roquero Solitario Monticola solitarius
The scenic return via Ventas de Zafarraya rather than the motorway to Malaga duly found Corn Buntings, House Sparrows and a resting Short-toed Eagle.  Even a small flock of Mallard on the irrigation pond at the back of Zafarraya.

Birds seen:
Mallard, Red-legged Partridge, Short-toed Eagle, Rock Dove, Collared Dove, Common Swift, Bee-eater, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Crag Martin, Barn Swallow, Robin, Stonechat, Blue Rock Thrush, Blackbird, Blackcap, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Spotted Flycatcher, Azure-winged Magpie, Spotless Starling, House Sparrow, Chaffinch, Serin, Goldfinch, Cirl Bunting, Rock Bunting, Corn Bunting.

Check out the accompanying website at for the latest sightings, photographs and additional information.

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