Sunday 17 March 2019

Bonaza: Cadiz Day 2

Glossy Ibis Morito Comun Plegadis falcinellus
Saturday 16 March

Bonanza, Cadiz Province

Up early and off to Bonanza near Sanlucar de Barrameda visiting the small pools just outside the village where I found a party of ten Night Herons along with Collared Dove, Spotless Starlings and House Sparrows before taking in the two better-known pools.  Here I found good numbers of Red-Crested and Common Pochard along with White-headed Ducks, Mallard and both Moorhen and CootBarn Swallows were feeding overhead as I made way back to the village for breakfast.  Great news; as I finished John and Jenny Wainwright also arrived early so I had very pleasant company for the rest of the day as the three of us explored the nearby salinas before heading off to Agaida to check out the large lake.

Juvenile and adult Night Heron martinete Comun Nycticorax nycticorax

Entering the salinas we were soon added Cormorant then a a good range of waders including all three small plovers plus Grey Plover, Redshank, Little Stint and Dunlin.  Moving along John also recorded a small flock of Waxbill and we all picked up Grey Heron, Little Egret, scores of Flamingo and very many AvocetGoldfinches and Crested Lark were recorded and a Turnstone before encountering our first Blue-headed Wagtails of the day.  In terms of gulls, mainly Black-headed and Yellow-legged but lovely to see a good number of Slender-billed Gulls including a few juveniles.  Not so much the Sandwich Tern seen over the Guadalquivir later on but the two resting Caspian Terns that caught our intention. Also on the water were a number of Shelduck.

Little Egret Garceta Comun Egretta garzetta

Working our way towards the pumping station we added Stonechat, Meadow Pipit, Sardinian Warblers and more Iberian Yellow Wagtails.  A couple of Glossy Ibis flew over.  Zitting Cisticolas were "zitting" about and then the raptors arrived in the form of a pair of Short-toed Eagles and Buzzards.  An unidentified raptor, possible a male Marsh Harrier, spent twenty minutes or more ripping apart his avian breakfast watched over, often very closely, by a female Marsh Harrier and we later had good views of both Black Kite and a pair of Booted Eagles, one each of light and dark morph.

Kentish Plover Chorlitejo Patinegro Charadrius alexandrinus

Once at the river, not only a Whimbrel and the passing Sandwich Tern but a resting Osprey on the far bank.  Back to the main salinas adding Little Egret and ore herons before meeting the approximate thirty members of the Andalucia Bird Society led by Frank Hair.  A brief stop to exchange pleasantries and then on to the lake at Agaida.  As we left John and Jenny noticed the handful of Red-rumped Swallows.

Egret colony
 The lake itself turned up all sorts of goodies including a single visiting Ring-necked Duck associating with the local Common Pochards.  Also present were a good number of White-headed Ducks, Red-crested Pochards and both Coot and Moorhen.  Searching produced a few Night Herons and as we scanned the far bank we managed to find bit a couple of Marbled Duck and a single Purple Heron.  The island contained a good population of Cattle Egret as well as both Little Egret and Spoonbill along with a juvenile Night Heron.  Also on the water a few Little and many Black-necked Grebes and we finally found a handful of Black-winged Stilts.

Record shot of very distant Ring-necked Duck Porron Acollarado Aythya collaris with Common Pochards

Then for me it was through the neighbouring woods and the road towards Trebujena where I found a few Corn Bunting on the fences and wires.  A great shortage of water but, eventually, close views of Glossy Ibis and many more Flamingos.  And just as I turned inland to start the long journey back a pair of White Stork on their nest.

Great Crested Grebes Somormujo Lavanco Podiceps cristatus courtship display

Passing though the hills near Olvera on the Cadiz/Malaga border I came across a few Griffon Vultures and then on to the Laguna Dulce near Campillos but no sign of the Little Crake seen recently.  However, I did find a good number of Great Crested Grebes along with their Little and Black-necked cousins plus Mallard, very many White-head Ducks and both Common and Red-Crested Pochards.  A couple of Lapwing was a pleasant addition as was the pair of distant raven resting in the bare tree near the ruined farm buildings. More Flamingos on the far side, Moorhen and cot along with some very vociferous Cetti's Warblers.

Red-crested Pochards Pato Colorado Netta rufina

Birds seen:
Shelduck, Mallard, Red-crested Pochard, Common Pochard, Ring-knecked Duck, Marbled Duck, White-headed Duck, Little Grebe, Great Crested Grebe, Black-necked Grebe, Cormorant, Cattle Egret, Little Egret, Night Heron, Glossy Ibis, Purple Heron, Grey Heron, White Stork, Spoonbill, Flamingo, Osprey, Black Kite, Griffon Vulture, Short-toed Eagle, Marsh Harrier, Booted Eagle, Buzzard, Kestrel, Moorhen, Coot, Black-winged Stilt, Avocet, Little Ringed Plover, Ringed Plover, Kentish Plover, Grey Plover, Lapwing, Little Stint, Dunlin, Whimbrel, Redshank, Black-headed Gull, Slender-billed Gull, Yellow-legged Gull, Caspian Tern, Sandwich Tern, Rock Dove, Crested Lark, Barn Swallow, Red-rumped Swallow, Meadow Pipit, Iberian Yellow Wagtail, Stonechat, Cetti's Warbler, Zitting Cisticola, Sardinian Warbler, Spotless Starling, House Sparrow, Waxbill, Goldfinch.

Glossy Ibis Morito Comun Plegadis falcinellus

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