Friday 29 June 2018

Las Norias & Roquetas de Mar withthe Arboleas Birding Grouop

Friday 28 June 

Finally back in my little Stamford, Lincolnshire house, basic domestics completed and time to catch up with the reports i received during my drive back to the UK from Spain.  (I must also get my own photos uploaded to the previously written blogs.)  Like me, Dave and his Arboleas Birding Group managed to find the blazing hot sun so will, no doubt, now be looking forward to a summer break.  Nut I bet he is out again within a fortnight - even if only on his own or with the lovely Gilly!  Looking at Dave's report, for me it was interesting to read, and see the photo, of the group's encounter with a Common Tern; still waiting to see one this year.

Las Norias & Roquetas  -  Wednesday 27th June

As there were only three Englishmen and no mad dogs, we, that being Paul, Alec and myself, headed early towards Las Norias hoping to miss the midday sun.  Having coffee'd at the Jct 420 service station, we made our way to the first causeway.  We were greeted by a Turtle Dove on the power line. Later there were four which was great to see.  Paul spotted an overflying Cattle Egret and I saw a Squacco Heron.  Alec found a Serin on the power line.  On the water we saw at least 8-10 Great Crested Grebe. 

Great Crested Grebe Podiceps cristatus (PHOTO: David Elliott-Binns)

Also saw a pair fly over the causeway.  Down the far end I spotted some Grey Heron amongst the Black-headed Gulls.  On the other side Paul found a female Red-crested Pochard.
We moved round to the next stop.  We had to tread carefully through the mounting piles of rubbish to get a view. We found some Cattle Egret, but then saw a flying Night Heron. We could hear numerous Reed Warblers.  Paul spotted three Black-necked Grebe and, oh yes, a Mallard!

Turtle Dove Streptopelia turtur (PHOTO: David Elliott-Binns)
We drove round to the second smaller pool.  On one of the leafless shrubs were an adult and three juvenile Night Heron plus a Little Egret.  Also had more female Red-crested Pochard with ducklings and Great Crested Grebes.

Adult and juvenile Night Heron Nycticorax nycticorax (PHOTO: David Elliott-Binns)
Driving towards Roquetas we added Bee-eater, Magpie and a Kestrel on the wires.  We did the Lighthouse end first.  From the causeway we saw Black-winged Stilt, Slender-billed Gull, Avocet, Little and Gull-billed Tern.  We parked up round the corner.  A flight of 6 Glossy Ibis flew by and Paul spotted a flying Common Tern.  There were more as we returned over the causeway.

Common Tern Sterna hirundo (PHOTO: David Elliott-Binns)
At the next stop we disturbed a female Shelduck with about 10 offspring.  I spotted a female White-headed Duck with young.  Then I found a pair of Collared Pratincole on the track.  Also seen were 100's of Greater Flamingo.  Paul added a Sardinian Warbler.

Collared Pratincole Glareola pratincola (PHOTO: David Elliott-Binns)
We then drove over to the hotel side and negotiated the very bumpy track.  We came across a Collared Pratincole on it which refused to move!  The pools are beginning to dry out.  Only saw Little Tern beside them . At the far end, by the old pumping station, we arrived to see a Red-rumped Swallow on the power line and a Yellow-legged Gull on the pylon.  

Red-rumped Swallow Hirundo daurica (PHOTO: David Elliott-Binns)
With the drop in water levels, there was more visible sand bank.  On it were Black-winged Stilt, a Kentish Plover, Little and Gull-billed Tern.  Having eaten our picnic lunch we returned to the hotel end only adding a House Martin. We drove round the Collared Pratincole again!

Little Tern Sterna albifrons (PHOTO: David Elliott-Binns)
Considering the rising temperatures, we had a really good day.  41 species.  We now have a summer break......unless I venture out sometime!
Regards, Dave

Here's looking forward to a bumper Autumn with lots of waders.

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

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