Friday, 23 October 2015

Sierra Loja with John and Jenny

Ring Ouzels Turdus torquatus (PHOTO: John Wainwright)
Thursday 22 October 2015

Birding holidays over so it is back to "normal" birding for us all.  Just as I was having a nose around Zapata with Derek and Barbara, John and Jenny Wainwright were, as to be expected, once again up their Sierra Loja.  Even received a phone call whilst in Malaga to inform me that there were at least a score of flighty Ring Ouzels to be found and, at the moment, a plentiful supply of berries.  Might have to visit next week or  month depending on other commitments.  Be good if the local Jack Snipe reappeared again.

With Derek and company visiting the site o in the morning, Friday, it will be interesting to see ho many Ring Ouzels they manage to find.

Sierra Loja

A warmish day below but still in the 22ÂșC up top.
Lots of "mushroomers" up the mountain today but still a few birds to see.  En-route to the Sierra we saw Collared Doves, Goldfinches and Chaffinches.  In the tree line we noted Crossbills, Rock Buntings, Mistle Thrushes and Coal Tits.

Rock Bunting Emberiza cia (PHOTO: John Wainwright)

Moving on to the cliffs we saw Chough, Jackdaws, Spotless Starlings, Black Wheatear, Black Redstarts, a Green Woodpecker was heard down in the lower slopes as well as Red-legged Partridges (which we found later).  A bit further on at the quarry area we saw Whinchat, more Mistle Thrushes, Black Redstarts and Goldfinches.  In the sub-station valley area we found Red-legged Partridges, a Southern Grey Shrike, Rock Sparrows, Meadow Pipits and a Northern Wheatear.

Northern Wheatear Oenanthe oenanthe (PHOTO: John Wainwright)

The "mushroomers" were all over the ponds so we drove straight round to the fossil cave where we saw more Rock Sparrows, Crag Martins, Meadow Pipits and Chough.

Corn Bunting Emberiza calandra (PHOTO: John Wainwright)

So on to our primary objective, the hawthorn bushes and possibly Ring Ouzels.  Not one or two but over twenty birds were seen - very mobile - and had to wait twenty or more minutes for the return of the birds to the bushes and the rock face.  After photographs we went over to the Sierra Gordo area where more Northern Wheatears, Red-legged Partridges and Ring Ouzels were seen.  So down to the catchment area where again the Ring Ouzels were about (only a dozen or so this time) but still very mobile and skittish.  A Mistle Thrush was also seen here as well as Linnets, a Great Tit, Robin, Blackbirds, Chaffinches, and a pair of Serins.

Record shot of Ring Ouzels Turdus torquatus (PHOTO: John Wainwright)

Retracing our route we finally located two Little Owls, Chiffchaffs, Black Wheatear and a White Wagtail but
I think the number of people here today was a bit of a disruption but still, our objective was made.

Rock Sparrow Petronia petronia (PHOTO: John Wainwright)

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