|Northern Wheatear Oenanthe oenanthe
The entry track to the mountain was very quiet with only a couple of Great Tits to welcome me. Nothing at the lower quarry and only a single Blue Rock Thrush at the main quarry so up and up I went. Almost immediately I was hearing and then seeing regular sightings of Red-legged Partridge and, just above the tree line, the first of a few Black Wheatears. Thekla Larks turned up at regular intervals and then, approaching the water trough, my first Southern Grey Shrike.
So on to the wind turbines where, at last, I encountered the "other" wheatears, mainly Black-eared but also a few Northern Wheatears. The first of a few small flocks of Goldfinches as I neared what little was left of the water at Charca del Negra but then a couple of Rock Sparrows and a Rock Bunting just off the track. However, pride of place went to the magnificent immature Golden Eagle that drifted over the rise and passed immediately overhead.
From here, on these upper slopes, i managed to find a number of Stonechats and a few Black Redstarts, including a very handsome male specimen, before hearing the familiar call of the Choughs. I new they were somewhere near but I certainly did not expect to find a flock in excess of seventy. A Mistle Thrush took off to the left and a single Hoopoe flew off to the right. I was to find another Hoopoe and more Black Redstarts along with a Mistle Thrush on the way back to the Charca del Negra.
|One of many Red-legged Partridges Alectoris rufa
Travelling home via Salar and the back of the "Magpie Woods" I was able to add Spotted Flycatcher, Magpie and Azure-winged Magpie and then, almost home as I approached Puente don Manuel, a Booted Eagle appeared over the road in front of me. Not a large species count but, nevertheless, some rather lovely birds recorded on what had been a warm and sunny day with clear blue skies but quite windy.
Red-legged Partridge, Golden Eagle, Booted Eagle,Rock Dove, Collared Dove, Hoopoe, Thekla Lark, Barn Swallow, House Martin, Black Redstart, Stonechat, Northern Wheatear, Black-eared Wheatear, Black Wheatear, Blue Rock Thrush, Mistle Thrush, Spectacled Warbler, Great Tit, Spotted Flycatcher, Southern Grey Shrike, Azure-winged Magpie, Magpie, Chough, Spotless Starling, House Sparrow, Rock Sparrow, Goldfinch, Linnet, Rock Bunting.
Check out the accompanying website at http://www.birdingaxarquia.weebly.com for the latest sightings, photographs and additional information.