Saturday, 22 June 2019

Laguna Pitillas

Saturday 22 June

Laguna Pitillas - known to me as "Swan Lake2
Just a two hour journey to reach Laguna Pitillas (known to me as "Swan Lake") from the overnight stop at Ateca and yet another glorious day.  Certainly the lake lived up to its name and came up trumps, fortunately not of the "Donald" variety, with the sighting of the breeding Mute Swans.  Is this the only site in Spain that has these wonderful and graceful birds as a breeding species?  Not only Mute Swans but in the scores and scores of Common Pochard, good numbers of Red-crested p Pochard and the ever present Mallard a handful of Tufted Duck.  And my last bird of the day before departing just after 1pm was yet another new species for the year with sighting of a Tawny Pipit which just sat and sat.  Mind you, I had to double check as the bird so took me by surprise for some reason.

Some of the resident Mute Swan Cygnus olor

The journey up to the laguna had produced some interesting species including Common Swift, Wood Pigeon, lots of Magpies, Kestrel, Hoopoe and a resting Buzzard albeit I was not expecting to see two Grey Herons drift over the road.

Once on. site I quickly added both Collared Dove and House Sparrow and as I walked to my left to check out the large duck population I also added Coot, Reed Warbler and White Wagtail.  A couple of Barn Swallows and many Common Swifts were seen before I found the first the Black-necked Grebe followed by the Little Grebes.

A walk to the fa hide to my right produced a couple of Crested Larks and once in the hide I saw my first of three Marsh Harriers that were quartering the reed beds.  However, walking back to the Visitors Centre I also found a number of Sky Larks on site.  Also present and singing away were a number of Great Reed Warbler but, on this occasion, no sighting of the resident Bearded Tits.

Female Linnet Carduelis cannabina - thinking of nest two?

Next into the car for the drive round to the back of the water in the hope that one of the local Great Bitterns might put in an appearance or fly over the reeds but it was not to be.  I did have a Hoopoe fly across the track and a posing Corn Bunting followed by a couple of Linnet which appeared to be collecting nesting material (second brood?) and then a stop to photograph the distant mystery bird.  Camera view enlarged and a check with the "Collins" to confirm a rather neat Tawny Pipit.

Tawny Pipit Anthus campestris

Just the morning's birding so that I could check into the local hostal for a rest before the early, hopefully, start in the morning to spend some time in the upper Pyrenees, my last day of Spanish birding, before heading off to Calais and the ferry to Dover with overnight stops at Saint Jean-Pied-de-Port and Poitiers.  So far it has been a very enjoyable feed days of birding with lots of good sightings.

Birds seen:
Mute Swan, Mallard, Red-crested Pochard, Common Pochard, Tufted Duck, Little Grebe, Black-necked Grebe, Marsh Harrier, Buzzard, Kestrel, Coot, Wood Pigeon, Collared Dove, Common Swift, Hoopoe, Crested Lark, Sky Lark, Barn Swallow, Tawny Pipit, White Wagtail, Reed Warbler, Great Reed Warbler, Magpie, Spotless Starling, House Sparrow, Linnet, Corn Bunting.


Check out the accompanying website at http://www.birdingaxarquia.weebly.com for the latest sightings, photographs and additional information

No comments:

Post a comment