Thursday, 26 June 2014

More sightings from the Charca de Suarez visit

Wednesday 25 June (continued)

I was not the only one recording the events of our visit to the Charca de Suarez.  John and Jenny Wainwright travelled over from Salar so had a few "extras" on both the journey and whilst waiting for the rest of the Axarquia Bird Group to arrive at the site's entrance.  Similarly, after the remainder of the follow-on group made their way back to the coast, John and Jenny called in at Padul on their inland return journey back to Salar and added even more species for their day.  The list for the visit has now been updated to included John's sightings at Charca along with Andy's Little Owl on the old ruin in "Turtle Dove Alley" and Steve's Zitting Cisticola.

John's day report is as follows:

A hottish day with some light breezes.

On the way down from Salar we spotted Collared Doves, Spotless Starlings, Jackdaws, Goldfinches,
Common Kestrels, Wood Pigeons, Common and Azure-winged Magpies, Barn Swallows, House
Martins, Common Swifts and a single Bee-eater.
On arrival at Suarez - rather early by 45 minutes - we headed for the beach, lots of hirundines here all 
Barn Swallows and House Martins. Looking over the beach we found Auduoin's, Black-headed and
Yellow-legged Gulls, two Sandwich Terns and one Mediterranean Gull. Three Little Ringed Plovers 
flashed past the gull and landed further down the beach, putting up a few House Sparrows in the doing
so.  A Blackcap sang from a small tree situated on the feeder stream bank and a Crested Lark was seen
along the bank.
Young Barn Swallow Hirundo rustica (PHOTO: Jenny Wainwright)

Returning to the site entrance we noticed a Turtle Dove perched high up on the residential apartments 
and above it two Common Kestrels circled.  And on entry to the site another Turtle Dove and several
Collared Doves were seen at the rear of the small marshy area here, along with Spotted Flycatcher, 
Greenfinch and a Blackbird.
Moving down to the area overlooking the new laguna, Marcus spotted a Pallid Swift, we then followed
this up with Yellow-legged Gulls, Common Swifts, Red-rumped Swallows and House Martins. While
on the laguna we added Black-winged Stilts, Common Sandpipers and a Mallard to our  total. We then
moved off and was able to see into the laguna from the track and here we picked up Wood Sandpiper 
and Greenshank along with a Green Sandpiper and another Common Sandpiper - this was extra to the
two already logged.  On the muddy areas a Blue-headed Yellow Wagtail was pointed out to me and 
along the waters edge a juvenile Grey Wagtail and two White Wagtails were also noted, along with two
Little Ringed Plovers.
Through the gate and turning left on the old track we stopped to search the reeds, here we saw a beautiful
marked male Red Avadavat and a female as well, two Reed Warblers, several juvenile Goldfinches and
a few Serins.  Two Green Sandpipers lifted off from a small wet area and a Bee-eater  was heard then
located over the same area, also a Common Kestrel was seen hovering.  Lots of hirundines about here
as well.
Juvenile Reed Warbler Carricero Comun Acrocephalus scirpaceus (PHOTO: Jenny Wainwright)

On the island in the main laguna, we found eight Cattle Egrets (all in full breeding plumage) and one
Little Egret, Mallard and Common Coots, whilst on the water a female Ferruginous Duck was located 
in the far right hand corner and the Red-knobbed Coot was found, close to its nesting site. Lots of 
Common Coots and Little Grebe here also.
The walk up to the next hide - lots of workmen about here today - was uneventful, although Blackcaps
and Goldfinches were heard.  From the hide we saw Red-knobbed and Common Coots and in the reed
bed several House Sparrows were seen.  Between here and the next hide we had great views of a 
Monarch butterfly (Danaus plexipplus) as well as another couple of Bee-eaters and a Great Tit.
Monarch Butterfly Danaus plexipplus (PHOTO: John Wainwright)
Moving on to the next hide (the last before the exit) we finally found the Purple Swamphen,also seen
here were Spotted Flycatcher, Common Kestrel, Common Coot, Moorhen, two more Monarch butterflies
and a Mallard.  We then moved round to the open hide where we were told on arrival that we had just 
missed the Little Bittern, still a bit of patience and it emerged again albeit briefly,then, a Nightingale, a
Cetti´s Warbler, two more Purple Swamphens, and last but not least great views of a Night Heron.
Little Bittern Avetorillo Comun Ixobrychus minutus (PHOTO: John Wainwright)
Four cars then took a detour down “Turtle Dove Aalley”, none of the latter were seen but the car in front 
of us spotted a Little Owl in an old building.
The Weir Picnic site: 
Four cars went in convoy to the above site and after parking, we were told by Bob that this was a  
somewhat renowned spot for Dippers – sadly not today but there were a lot of children about. We did,
however, pick up a few more trip ticks in the shape of Chaffinches, Golden Orioles (male and female),
Crag Martins and a Southern Grey Shrike, and on our way out as I was last in leaving, more Golden
Orioles, a Sardinian Warbler and a Grey Wagtail.
Spotted Flycatcher Papamoscas Gris Muscicapa striata (PHOTO: John Wainwright)
Padul laguna and area.
Just Jenny and I moved on to Padul, the wind had picked up here, but we still managed to find three 
Grey Herons from the main hide. In the remainder of the area we saw Serins, Reed Warblers, Mallard,
House Sparrows, Turtle and Collared Doves, Wood Pigeons, Crested Larks, Woodchat Shrike, Barn and
Red-rumped Swallows and two Thekla Larks.  Two Quail were heard calling at different locations, a
Great Reed Warbler serenaded us as we photographed a Whinchat. Corn Buntings were in good numbers
and a male Marsh Harrier was seen twice, quartering the meadows and reedbeds.
Whinchat Tarabilla Nortena Saxicola rubetra (PHOTO: John Wainwright)
A long day but very productive indeed.
Check out the accompanying website at for the latest sightings, photographs and additional information.

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