Friday, 22 October 2021

Charca de Suarez

 Thursday 21 October

Grey Heron Ardea cinerea at the Charca

Almost in residence so time for an afternoon visit to nearby Charca de Suarez in Motril. Taking the Camino Patricia route along the back of the reserve, I first recorded a passing Kestrel followed by a dozen feeding Cattle Egret as they followed the ploughing tractor.  A male Stonechat on the wires then House Sparrows before arriving on site with a second Kestrel

Stonechat Saxicola torquatus

Straight to the Laguna del Taraje in lovely, warm late afternoon sunshine to find, yet again, no shortage pf water and tall vegetation.  A score of Mallard and a single Moorhen but, even more obvious, right in front of me, a Purple Swamphen.  A Little Grebe made its way to the far right and was replaced by an approaching Shoveler.  Moving to the hide at the other end of the water a trio of Gadwall and the first Red-knobbed Coot.

Purple Swamphen Porphyrio porphyrio

Very little to be seen at the Laguna del Alamo Blanco with too much water and lots of tall grasses.  A sleeping Greenshank and a well-hidden Heron in addition to a couple of Mallard and a Moorhen.  Moving on to the main hide overlooking the Laguna de las Aneas first a Robin then an over-flying Blackbird, the first of a quintet to be seen during the visit.

Heron Ardea cinerea

Once settle in the hide obvious that there were still numerous Common Coot to be seen along with more Red-knobbed Coots. A single Little Egret resting on the island in front and many more Mallard and a good number of Shoveler.  The occasional Little Grebe before searching the far end where I found Pochard and a trio of Ferruginous Duck.  Also in attendance a dozen Cormorant and as many Black-headed along with a quartet of Yellow-legged Gulls.  Lovely to find a couple of Teal and, of course, very many more Moorhen. However, pride of place probably goes to the dozen Grey Heron perched around the back.

Ferruginous Duck Aythya nyroca

Nothing new when I arrived at the Laguna del Trebol but more Red-knobbed Coot but upon walking round to the hide at the southern end of the water a Grey Wagtail and feeding Chiffchaff. A Collared Dove came to visit and then a Robin appeared in the bushes to my right. Having followed the movement I eventually found the foraging Cetti’s Warbler in the dense undergrowth and in the reeds to my right a Stonechat. 

Red-knobbed Coot Fulica cristata

The last visit was to the Laguna del Lirio where, in addition to the trio of Red-knobbed Coot and single Moorhen a visit by a male Blackcap was a new species for the evening. Leaving the reserve I was pleased to see the arrival of a dozen Crag Martins circling the adjacent apartment blocks obviously down from the mountains to start their winter break at lower levels and searching for a preferred roosting site now that the sun had dipped and the evening temperature was falling.  And now sixteen Cattle Egrets as I returned by the same route.

Cattle Egret Bubulcus ibis

 Birds seen:

Gadwall, Mallard, Shoveler, Teal, Pochard, Ferruginous Duck, Little Grebe, Cormorant, Cattle Egret, Little Egret, Heron, Kestrel, Moorhen, Purple Swamphen, Common Coot, Red-knobbed Coot, Greenshank, Black-headed Gull, Yellow-legged Gull, Collared Dove, Crag Martin, Grey Wagtail, Robin, Stonechat, Blackbird, Cetti’s Warbler, Chiffchaff, House Sparrow.

Gadwall Anas strepera

Shovler Anas clypeata

Little Egret Egretta garzetta

Red-knobbed Coot Fulica cristata

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

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