Wednesday 14 April
With rain forecast to arrive by just after eleven this morning, I took the opportunity to make a very quick visit to Las Campinuelas north of the nearby motorway. Parking the car before 10 o'clock I decided to take a short walk north of the road on which the car was parked, a thirty minute anti-clockwise route that as competed within thirty minutes. Blackbirds, House Sparrows and Collared Doves as I approached and once underway on the walk mainly more Blackbirds. Then there were all the Bee-eaters. From first to last on my visit non-stop aerial displays form these beautiful birds. Working my way u the steep hillside I noted a restring Kestrel on the wires near a water deposit to my right and good numbers of calling Goldfinches as they moved from tree to tree.
|Bee-eater Merops apiaster
On a fence to my left a male Sardinian Warbler had alighted and then moving down towards the old ruin below me the fort of the morning's Hoopoes. A couple of Crested Larks put in an appearance followed by Serins. Whereas I had expected to see more Crested Larks it was Sky Lark that caught my attention, clearly showing the white edges to its primary feathers. And making my way down the hill a small group of Common Swifts were seen above me.
|Hoopoe Upupa epops
No sign yet of the dreaded rain so took a chance that I might just be ale to complete a shortened circuit south of the road and still be back at the car in the dry. Walking south towards the large ruin I stopped to admire the well-exposed but distant Woodchat Shrike before encountering yet more Blackbirds. The next treat was a male Whitethroat and then on towards the airfield for the model aircraft and on up to the scramble area where I found yet more Crested Larks and the the ever-present Bee-eaters. In addition, a few Barn Swallows along with another handful of Common Swifts were also observed.
|Very distant Woodchat Shrike Lanius senator
Unbelievable, I had no sooner climbed into the car after a Monk Parakeet passed over above me when I noticed the fist spots of rain on the windscreen. But that was it, a maximum of ten drops as I set off for home but, first, a short stop a little further down the hill to take a closer look at both the Bee-eaters and a pair of Hoopoe.
|A pair of Hoopoe Upupa epops
Kestrel, Collared Dove, Monk Parakeet, Bee-eater, Hoopoe, Common Swift, Crested Lark, Sky Lark, Barn Swallow, Blackbird, Sardinian Warbler, Whitethroat, Great Tit, Woodchat Shrike, Spotless Starling, House Sparrow, Serin, Goldfinch.
|Just a few of the very many Bee-eaters that suddenly put in an appearance above me
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