Well, it looks like congratulations and "Happy birthday" to both Dave and Brian who had something extra to celebrate on the arrival of the New Year. And what better way to spend the day than birding at Cabo de Gata and start the year off with their first 43 species. Extra special when you record both Dartford Warbler and Trumpeter Finch. And all photographs taken by Gilly Elliott-Binns.
Cabo de Gata - Monday 1st January 2018
|Trumpeter Finch Carpodacus erythagineus|
Mary spotted a Black Wheatear. We carried on to the rear of the reserve. We saw the first of oh so many pairs of Stonechat, followed by 3 or four Corn Bunting. On the water's edge we had Ringed Plover, Dunlin, Redshank and a Ruff. We detoured up to the ruined buildings and disturbed a Black Redstart. A covey of Red-legged Partridge flew off.
|Ringed Plover Charadrius hiaticula|
Getting back to the track we added Little Stint, Avocet, Black Winged Stilt and Shelduck, not to mention the Greater Flamingos! A Thekla Lark posed well for us. We then had good views of both Sardinian and Dartford Warblers. On the water we found 4 Black-necked Grebe and beyond the causeway we could see Cormorant and Lesser Black-backed Gulls at rest. An Iberian Grey Shrike flew past just before Mary spotted a Raven on a post. Nearing the end of the track we flushed about 10 Stone Curlew from their usual winter area near the goat yard. We added Greenfinch and Robin before reaching the main road.
|Dartford Warbler Sylvia undata|
|One on many Stonechat Saxicola torquatus|
We then drove through the last village to have a picnic overlooking the rocky shore line. A sea-watch produced about 10 adult Gannet.
Suitably stuffed, we did the rear of the reserve again, seeing basically the same birds as the mornings trip apart from a Hoopoe near the hedged field. We ended with 43 species. We all enjoyed our birthday birdwatch. Wishing everybody a very good birding 2018.
Regards, Dave & Gilly (photographer of the day).
|Black-winged Stilt Himantopus himantopus|
|Raven Corvus corax|
|The "headless" Ruff Philomachus pugnax|
|Male Sardinian Warbler Sylvia melanocephala|
|Thekla Lark Galerida theklae|
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