Sunday 11 April 2021

Las Campinuelas, Velez Malaga

 Sunday 11 April

Las Campinuelas looking south-west towards Torre del mar

Up early so that I could be at a suitable parking spot at the northern end of Las Campinuelas to undertake an anti-clockwise circuit of the area. taking the country route through the area to arrive before 8 o'clock I was able to find an early morning Little Owl resting atop a concrete pole along with a number of Blackbirds once within the Las Campinuelas parkland.

Little Owl Athene noctua

Once parked I started by exploring the immediate area including a couple of ruins and a natural spring which revealed the first of a handful of BlackcapHoopoes seemed to be everywhere and I eventually recorded eleven individuals plus many more Blackbirds.  Leaving Collared Doves on the wires as well as the nearby trees, I set off southwards through the old and abandoned mature olive trees and ere long had picked up Great Tit, Woodchat Shrike and a number of Crested Larks.  

Woodchat Shrike Lanius senator

A Wood Pigeon flew over and once at the southern end on the site recorded Stonechat and, whilst observing a Corn Bunting, a Subalpine Warbler arrived below the same bush..

Two of many Hoopoe Upupa epops

The journey continued on past the model aircraft airfield and scramble track back to the Camino de Algarrobo where I crossed the road to watch the scores of active Bee-eaters.  Moving upwards in a westerly direction I saw first a male Chaffinch in the picnic area followed by a couple of Barn Swallows low over the road and high above a few Common Swifts.  Another pair of Great Tit and no sooner had I found a Whitethroat than it was chased out of the tree by the arriving Bonelli's Warbler.

Male Chaffinch Fringilla coelebs

Now back at the car I took the opportunity to take a final look at the spring and small holding basin which produced a number of Serin and a couple of Linnet to add to the individual I had seen at the much-reduced muck heap.

Distant Linnet Carduelis cannabina on the "muck heap"

Not yet 10 o'clock when I arrived back in Caleta on way home so stopped at the harbour entrance to check out the gull colony.  Most surprised to find just 45 gulls present, mainly Mediterranean but also both Lesser Black-backed and a few Yellow-legged Gulls.  This five minute stop also enable me to catch up with both the local Monk Parakeets and House Sparrow whilst above me the local Pallid Swifts were yet to ascend higher into the sky. However, the biggest surprise was the low-flying Red-rumped Swallow as I set off back to the main N30 road to complete my journey.

Greenfinch Carduelis chloris

Birds seen:

Mediterranean Gull, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Yellow-legged Gull, Wood Pigeon, Collared Dove, Monk Parakeet, Little Owl, Bee-eater, Hoopoe, Common Swift, Pallid Swift, Crested Lark, Barn Swallow, Red-rumped Swallow, Stonechat, Blackbird, Subalpine Warbler, Whitethroat, Blackcap, Bonelli's Warbler, Great Tit, Woodchat Shrike, House Sparrow, Chaffinch, Serin, Greenfinch, Goldfinch, Linnet, Corn Bunting.

Two of very many Bee-eaters Merops apiaster

Check out the accompanying website at for the latest sightings, photographs and additional information

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