|Wood Sandpiper Andarrios bastardo Tringa glareola
I had to go out yesterday but awoke to continuous rain so forget that. However, this morning was the only day of the week when I was promises dry weather all day and glorious sunshine so up and away by 8.30 to call in at the Laguna Herrera before travelling on to Fuente de Piedra and Laguna Dulce. The first stop was an absolute delight without a single person being seen but then I arrived at Fuente in the late morning to find the car park full. The rest of Spain and its dog had also decided that Fuente would be a super place to spend a national holiday! Even the picnic area at Laguna Dulce was well occupied though, fortunately, no body was taking any interest in the hide overlooking the water; what a pleasant relief.
|Little Bustard Sison Comun Tetrax tetrax
|Stone Curlew Alcaravan Comun Burhinus oedicnemus
|Ever wondered what a Black-winged Stilt Ciguenuela Comun Himantopus himantopus does with its legs when on nest?
|Purple Heron Garza Imperial Ardea purpurea
|Gull-billed Terns Pagaza Piconegra Sterna nilotica at work and at rest
By now the sun was well and truly up in the sky and the Common Swifts had decided it was time to go out to feed as they arrived by the score. Departing the laguna to head up the long track to pick up the motorway at the next junction, I had first a couple of Goldfinches, then Blackbirds and a single Common Sandpiper in the adjacent ditch. A Woodchat Shrike posed on a signpost. The vegetation alongside the ditch was alive with more Yellow Wagtails of the Flava iberiae race.
|Female Yellow Wagtail Lavandera Boyera of the Iberian race (Motacilla flava iberiae)
|Curlew Sandpipers Correlimos Zarapitin Calidris ferruginea feeding up before departure north
Too many people on the far side of the causeway so I restricted myself to standing on the bridge to see if anything else was present apart from the handful of Black-winged Stilts that I could see. Another Wood Sandpiper on the road side and three Kentish Plovers on the water side of the bridge. Plus a family of cyclists who road across and almost took me and my bins into the drink!
|Avocet Avoceta Comun Recurvirostra avosetta at Fuente de Piedra
|Lots of Greater Flamingos Flamenco Comun Phoenicopterus roseus about an many showing signs of departure
|A handsome Black-necked Grebe Zampullin Cuelinegro Podiceps nigricollis at Laguna Dulce
And so on to the Laguna Dulce where I was able to add a single male White-headed Duck, a lovely female Marsh Harrier and a a three pairs of Black-necked Grebes to the day's list. A quick visit to the neighbouring lagunas of Redonda and Capacete respectively produced Coots with young and another Gull-billed Tern but, at the latter, I also had a pair of Turtle Doves. And so back to the main Campillos to Antequera road and as I traversed the track to avoid driving through the town the now much-reduced flooded field produced five Little Egrets to go with the half-dozen Black-winged Stilts. A good morning's birding with a final tally of 59 species.
Other birds photographed included:
|Kentish Plover Chorlitejo Patinegro Charadrius alexandrinus seen from the causeway at Fuente de Piedra
|One of many Redshank Archibebe Comun Tringa totanus seen during the morning
|Resting Barn Swallow Golondrina Comun Hirundo rustica
|Woodchat Shrike Alcaudon Comun Lanius senator
|Numerous Corn Buntings Triguero Emberiza calandra
.... and not forgetting the large number of dragonflies seen:
|Scarlet Darter (Broad Darter) Crocothemis erythraea
Mallard, Red-crested Pochard, Pochard, White-headed Duck, Little Grebe, Great Crested Grebe, Black-necked Grebe, Cattle Egret, Little Egret, Grey Heron, Purple Heron, Flamingo, Black-winged Kite, Marsh Harrier, Montagu's Harrier, Buzzard, Kestrel, Moorhen, Coot, Little Bustard, Black-winged Stilt, Avocet, Stone Curlew, Ringed Plover, Kentish Plover, Lapwing, Little Stint, Curlew Sandpiper, Dunlin, Redshank, Greenshank, Wood Sandpiper, Common Sandpiper, Black-headed Gull, Gull-billed Tern, Whiskered Tern, Black Tern, Rock Dove, Turtle Dove, Collared Dove, Swift, Bee-eater, Hoopoe, Calandra Lark, Crested Lark, Thekla Lark, Barn Swallow, House Martin, Red-rumped Swallow, Iberian Yellow Wagtail, Stonechat, Blackbird, Sardinian Warbler, Woodchat Shrike, Spotless Starling, House Sparrow, Serin, Goldfinch, Corn Bunting.
Check out the accompanying website at http://www.birdingaxarquia.weebly.com for the latest sightings, photographs and additional information.