On site at the Guadalhorce in Malaga just before 8.30 in the hope that the birding might be relatively comfortable before the heat really set in, as it did by mid-morning when I made an early exit to call in at the airport re tickets so only about two and a half hours on site for my almost 40 species.
Arriving I immediately saw both Jackdaws and Collared Doves and the walk to the footbridge produced a pair of Sardinian Warblers. Crossing the footbridge plenty of House Martins in the air and a few Barn Swallows. To my right the first Spotless Starlings of the morning and then the first Common Swifts feeding quite low. Once over the bridge a movement to my left revealed a Zitting Cisticola and, approaching the first hide a handful of House Martins.
Once at the Laguna Casillas only the one Mallard seen and a similar count of Little Grebe. On the other hand over a score of Black-winged Stilts with at least sight nests counted. To add to the list, about five or more Coot and a single Moorhen. Reed Warblers were seen and heard all around me and then a Cetti's Warbler perched on a bare branch for a few seconds.
|Crested Lark Cogujada Comun Galerida cristata|
On to the Wader Pool and a single Grey Heron and four Little Egret to add to yet more Black-winged Stilts. A Kestrel flew over and up returning to the pool I also added a pair of Crested Lark and a couple of Little Ringed Plover. A passing Blackbird and a couple of Goldfinch also improved the sightings at this articular water.
|Flock of resting Audouin's Gulls Gaviota de Audouin Larus audouinii|
|Common Tern Charran Comun Sterna hirundo to the far left|
Back then by the same route and on to the Laguna Escondida where as soon as I arrived a Kingfisher dashed across the water in front of me. A few Coot and Mallard along with a trio or Little Grebe whilst towards the back a handful of White-headed Duck and maybe as many as a quartet of Pochard. On the dead tree to my left a couple of Bee-eaters which were later joined by a third before the arrival of a male Kestrel.
|One of three Bee-eaters Abejaruco Europea Merops apiaster|
Finally to the main hide overlooking the Laguna Grande where all but two of the gulls were Slender-billed, the others being Black-headed Gulls. No Acocets but a few more Black-winged Stilts and just the one Kentish Plover. Also present, apart from Collared Doves, House Sparrow, Spotless Starlings and a constant stream of feeding House Martins over the water, a total of eleven Greater Flamingo.
|Five of the Greater Flamingo Flamenco Comun Phoenicopterus roseus on Laguna Grande|
With sun now well and truly beating down I decided to call it a day and head off home as I walked back towards the footbridge I stopped to watch a House Sparrow come to rest on a small perch and discovered my first Monk parakeet of the morning - and not a single sound from this normally raucous species.
Mallard, Pochard, White-headed Duck, Little Grebe, Little Egret, Heron, Flamingo, Kestrel, Moorhen, Coot, Black-winged Stilt, Little Ringed Plover, Kentish Plover, Black-headed Gull, Slender-billed Gull, Audouin's Gull, Common Tern, Little Tern, Rock Dove, Collared Dove, Monk Parakeet, Swift, Kingfisher, Bee-eater, Crested Lark, Barn Swallow, House Martin, Blackbird, Cetti's Warbler, Zitting Cisticola, Reed Warbler, Sardinian Warbler, Jackdaw, Spotless Starling, House Sparrow, Greenfinch, Goldfinch.
|Record shot of the Sandwich Tern Charran patinegro Sterna sandvicensis|
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