|Iberian Grey Shrike Alcaudon Real Lanius meridionalis|
Portugal day! Within thirty minutes we had cross the Guadiana and Spanish border to arrive at the Castro Marim reserve on the western bank of the river. having already seen a Robin as we left our resort we looking forward to a selection of passerines. Crested Lark and a few Common and Azure-winged Magpies as we awaited Gerry and Barbara then quickly added maybe thirty or more Red-legged Partridge. A distant Heron and Cattle Egret and a small flock of Greenfinch passed by. In the distance below the brow of the hill a passing quartet of Mallard and a quartering Marsh Harrier.
|One of a dozen Red-legged Partridge Perdiz Roja Alectoris rufa|
Moving slowly onwards up the track a number of Redshank were seen in the various lagoons and a pair of Hoopoe crossed in front of us so revealing a lovely Northern Wheatear.
|Northern Wheatear Collalba Gris Oenanthe oenanthe|
Also present were Black-winged Stilts and both Common and Green Sandpipers. Kestrels overhead along with Spotless Starlings as we made our way to the Visitors Centre. No water in the screened pool so off towards the salinas where we found a mixed flock of Bar and Black-tailed Godwit along with Ringed Plover and Sanderling.
|Black-tailed Godwits Aguja Colinegra Limosa limosa|
|Turnstone Vuelvepiedras Comun Arenaria interpres|
And so onto the main salinas at Tavira where we were spoilt for choice in both quantity and variety. Little Stint and many White Stork and then we found a good supply of feeding Little Egret and Heron. Turnstones were working the edges along with Sanderling and Ringed Plover and with both Zitting Cistcola and Blackcap behind us. Stopping for lunch we discovered a single Slender-billed Gull in the pool below us whilst on the other side of the track we had a small flock of Cormorant and Little Grebe working the waters plus a couple of Shelduck. Once more back to the mixed gull flock and this time a trio of Mediterranean Gulls were recorded along with a small number of Audouin's Gull.
|Audouin's Gull Gaviota de Audouin Larus audouinii (centre right)|
Almost some sort of record with seven gull species in the morning! Then the Caspian Tern flew over and we also picked up a small number of Grey Plover.
|Grey Plover Chorlito Gris Pluvialis squatarola (left) with Redshank Archibebe Comun Tringa totanus|
|A gathering of Spoonbills Espatula Comun Platalea leucorcdia|
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