A beautiful morning and as I had seen Golden Oriole yesterday rather than a long journey over to the Aroyo Marin I decided to seek out an Alpine Swift up at the pass at Ventas de Zafarrya and then follow on down the mountain track to the Alcaucin picnic area in the hope of some small passerines. A sort of bad news all round as now swift and very little else to be seen a s I walked the track up through the tunnel and as far as the old ruins.
|Aerial antics of the Chough Chova Piquirroja Pyrrhocorax pyrrhocorax|
|Female Stonechat tarabilla Comun Saxicola torquatus above with male below|
Hearing about the orchids beyond Zafarraya I left John and Jenny in the company of the Spotless Starlings that had turned up and dove over to take a look. Whilst on the bank I also saw Blackbirds, Azure-winged Magpies and Chaffinches then it was taking the back roads through the village, recording Mallards on the pond, and on to the "Muck Heap", where I recorded Blue-headed Wagtail and Crested Lark, then up to the "Magpie Woods" picking up Mistle Thrush and Barn Swallow, and back to start on the track down to the picnic sites.
|Orchid species (Bee-orchid?)|
The drive down the mountain track was very quiet. My usual circular walk following the stream only produced a Wood Pigeon, Blue Tits, Goldfinches and Chaffinches but upon returning I did at least have a couple of Crossbills drinking from a puddle. Only 21 species in a couple of hours but at least I was out of the house and enjoying the beautiful weather and countryside.
|Juvenile Crossbill Piquituerto Comun Loxia curvirostra enjoying hits morning drink|
|Female Crossbill Piquituerto Comun Loxia curvirostra|
|Mum and off-spring Crossbills Piquituerto Comun Loxia curvirostra at the water hole|
Mallard, Wood Pigeon, Crested Lark, Crag Martin, Barn Swallow, Blue-headed Wagtail, Stonechat, Black Wheatear, Blue Rock Thrush, Blackbird, Mistle Thrush, Blue Tit, Woodchat Shrike, Azure-winged Magpie, Chough, Spotless Starling, Rock Sparrow, Chaffinch, Greenfinch, Goldfinch, Crossbill.
Check out the accompanying website at http://www.birdingaxarquia.weebly.com for the latest sightings, photographs and additional information.