Thursday, 2 June 2022

Fuente de Piedra

Wednesday 1 June

Avocets Recurvirosta avosetta and a Flamingo Phoenicopterus roseus

A very pleasant couple of hours at Fuente de Piedra on my way over to friend Derek Etherton near Malaga before we head off tomorrow to distant parts in Sevilla and Cadiz provinces.  Again, very hot with clear blue skies and no wind.  The target bird was the visiting Lesser Flamingos and on this occasion I was not to be disappointed.

Glossy Ibis Plegadis falcinellus

Crossing the railway bridge with many House Martins in view I entered the reserve as a Wood Pigeon crossed in front of me and most amazed to see that the field on the left was still flooded.  Not only holding water but hosting scores of Avocet, Flamingos and Black-winged Stilts.  During my stop I also found a pair of White Stork, a dozen or so Glossy Ibis and a small flock of Slender-billed Gulls. Apart from the overflying Barn Swallows and a Collared Dove, further searching produced a single Lapwing and Redshank along with a couple of Black-tailed Godwits. A trio of Cattle Egret was somewhat surprising, especially in that not a single Little Egret was seen on site.  Coots naturally and calling Reed Warblers in the nearby reeds as I made my way up to the car park.

Cattle Egret Bubulcus ibis

Walking top the mirador overlooking the main laguna, it was most evident that the water had drastically reduced through evaporation so leaving a fine layer of salt almost as far as the eye could  see.  A few noisy Jackdaws nearby and eventually finding the approximate fifty Greater Flamingos in the bay to the extreme left of the mirador and partly hidden by trees.  Much searching of each individual bird before I finally found two Lesser Flamingos.  At this point I was joined by a lovely quartet of visiting Belgians who had travelled to the site especially to see the Flamingos and was able to share my scope before explaining that closer views could be found by visiting the nearby hide overlooking the lagunetta at the rear.

Flamingos Phoenicopterus roseus

Moving myself to the lagunetta I, too, was ale to see the Flamingos plus more Avocet and a pair of White-headed DucksCoots and Moorhens and a pair of Marbled Duck resting at the edge of the island to my left before also recording both Common Pochard and Mallard.  A couple of Little Grebe and in the far distance plus a pair of Shelduck I could see a well grown chick on the White Stork's nest atop the tower on the other side of the railway line.

Avocet Recurvirosta avosetta

A Blackbird passed below me and lots of calling Nightingales plus a few Bee-eaters overhead. which were then joined by the Gull-billed Terns.  Time to work my way back to the car for the onward journey towards Malaga and reaching the car park a Kestrel flew over the area. A last check of the flooded field produced a Red-rumped Swallow and then a trio of Collared Doves as I reached the main road.  A special treat as I started off as the resident Barn Owl was resting at the entrance hole to its nest site and then passing Penarrubia I also added a Chough.

White Stork Ciconia ciconia

Birds seen:

Shelduck, Mallard, Pochard, Marbled Duck, White-headed Duck, Little Grebe, Glossy Ibis, Cattle Egret, White Stork, Greater Flamingo, Lesser Flamingo, Kestrel, Moorhen, Coot, Black-winged Stilt, Avocet, Lapwing, Black-tailed Godwit, Redshank, Black-headed Gull, Slender-billed Gull, Gull-billed Tern, Rock Dove, Wood Pigeon, Collared Dove, Barn Owl, Bee-eater, Barn Swallow, Red-rumped Swallow, House Martin, Nightingale, Blackbird, Reed Warbler, Jackdaw, Chough, Spotless Starling, House Sparrow, 

White Stork Ciconia ciconia

Avocets R.curvirostra with Black-tailed Godwit Limosa limosa

Black-tailed Godwit Limosa limosa

Glossy Ibis Plegadis falcinellus

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