Tuesday 21 April 2020

Birding in Malaga City

Monday 20 April

You don't have to be cut off from the birding world living in a large city or town; but it certainly helps if you have a view of the mountains, sea or a park.  Indeed, you are far more likely to see more than me with my limited view of the sea!

Mixed flock of Gulls on the Misericordia beach in Malaga (PHOTO: Jacinto Villavilla)
Yesterday I had an email from my dear friend, Jacinto Villavilla who lives within sight of the Misericordia Beach in the city of Malaga which stretches from the centre of the city to the mouth of the Guadalhorce. I'm not sure where exactly Jacinto lives and whether or not he has an apartment overlooking the sea or access to a roof terrace but the beach can be seen.  And to his surprise and pleasure, not just the usual gathering of small flocks of mixed gulls on Sunday but he first found a small group of Mediterranean Gulls then a flock of 13 Greater Flamingos resting at the water's edge.  Ere long the flock moved off westwards to, perhaps, take shelter and feed in the Guadalhorce reserve itself, especially now that there is no access due to the Coronavirus shutdown, or maybe either working their way inland to Fuente de Piedra or far west along the coast towards the mighty Guadalquivir or even the Donana National Park itself plus also the gathering of large flocks at the Odiel river west of Huelva.

Greater Flamingos Flamenco Comun Phoenicopterus roseus (PHOTO: Jacinto Villavilla)
So, the secret is to remain positive as there are birds to be seen everywhere.  Like me it maybe House Sparrows and Monk Parakeets with my resident Blackbirds and Sardinian Warblers throughout the year plus the arrival of Black Redstarts and White Wagtails for their winter holidays at the sea side, not to mention the regular over-flying, mainly, Mediterranean Gulls but, nevertheless, there are birds to be seen if you look.  And even if you say you only have House Sparrows, take a moment to listen to their happy chirping and watch their behaviour; certainly better than watching the television during the day and makes a relaxing rest from continuous reading and using the computer.

Mediterranen Gull Gaviota Cabecinegra Larus melanocephalus (PHOTO: Jacinto Villavilla)
Remember; stay safe, stay well but also stay happy and positive.  Sunshine will return and we shall all once again be able to go out birding.

Check out the accompanying website at http://www.birdingaxarquia.weebly.com for the latest sightings, photographs and additional information


  1. We like the positive vibes in your blog at this very difficult time in all our lives. If you love wildlife you will NEVER be bored. And with Spring all around us there could not be a better time to be grateful for the free and wonderful events of nature for everyone to enjoy no matter how difficult it may seem.
    How very nice if you to string together some of our mutual friend's photos taken from his appartment....a chance to relax when the pressures are so great....
    Ken & Sarah White

  2. Many thanks Ken and Sarah and trust that you, too, are safe and well back in Blighty. Long time, no see but who knows what the future may bring when sunny days finally return. Son living near Cold Ash so, perhaps you could send me details of the Berkshire Bird Society so I can the interested more than just the birds in the garden.