100+ Birds Malaga Bird Watching Challenge (Costa del Sol, Andalucia, Southern Spain)

107 species observed! Waders and the Mouth of the Guadalhorce have been key in this August 100+ Birds Malaga Challenge.

Have a look at the pictures and the complete list of birds below!

The trip started at 5:00 in Zapata with an attempt to take a picture of the Red-necked Nightjar. The shot is not very good, but the bird posed very well!

Scops Owls were very active today and the Tawny Owl joined them with a few miaows with the first lights of the day at Montes de Malaga.  The Green Woodpecker was very noisy as well. One of these times, I heard it flying closer to me behind some trees when it came out and then a Sparrowhawk behind! It seems as if the woodpecker’s speed and cries dissuaded the raptor to keep on chasing it.

There were two species on passage at Montes de Malaga: Redstarts and Pied Flycatchers. On the way to El Torcal, I could also see a nice flock of Bee-eaters when I stopped to watch a couple of Booted Eagles.

The long and dry summer has make El Torcal a more silent place. I could not spot some of the typical inhabitants in the last months, but I still watched Spectacled Warbler, Griffon Vulture, Black Redstart and Blue Rock Thrush. I tried to spot a bird among the leaves in a tree when I found a face with very nice white eyes... it was an Orphean Warbler!

As I did not see the Black-eared Wheatear from the road, I walked to the place where they use to be. Thekla Larks soon sang at me. Then, lots of Pallid Swifts began to fly very close to the ground and to me across the ridge; it was fantastic! I eventually found the wheatear and learned how they hide in the shade of the big rocks when it is hot as it was today.

Next stop was Fuente de Piedra. A flock of around 100 Flamingos still feeds in the last pond of the lake. Some of them have come back to the Laguneto, which has also lost a lot of water so diving ducks have left. Red-crested Pochards and a Ferruginous Duck have moved to the little Laguna de la Paloma, near the Laguneto. Olivaceous Warblers are very active all around the site and there was a massive passage of Bee-eaters over the lake.

A walk along the cliffs of El Chorro gave me the flight of the young Bonelli’s Eagle, lots of Griffon Vultures, Dartford Warbler and a big flock of Corn Buntings.

I saw a Short-toed Eagle over the road on my way down to the coast through the Valley of the Guadalhorce.

I was still 16 species behind the target so visiting Zapata and the mouth of the river was going to be necessary. I got Cattle and Little Egrets, Grey Heron and Kingfisher in my quick visit to Zapata.

Once at the mouth: Monk Parakeet, White-headed Duck, Teal, Audouin’s, Lesser Black-back and Yellow-legged Gulls, Avocet, Redshank, Scopoli’s Shearwater (fantastic views with the sunset light!), Pochard and Gadwall, 99 species just before my last chance at Laguna Grande. Then, waders went into action: Curlew Sandpiper (100!), Kentish Plover, Dunlin, Ringed Plover, Little Stint, Whimbrel, Sanderling and the non-wader Glossy Ibis.

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107 species in total:

1 Audouin's Gull Larus audouinii
2 Avocet  Recurvirostra avosetta
3 Barn Swallow  Hirundo rustica
4 Bee-eater Merops apiaster
5 Black Kite Milvus migrans
6 Black Redstart  Phoenicurus ochruros
7 Blackbird  Turdus merula
8 Blackcap Sylvia atricapilla
9 Black-eared Wheatear Oenanthe hispanica
10 Black-headed Gull  Chroicocephalus ridibundus
11 Black-winged Stilt  Himantopus himantopus
12 Blue Rock Thrush  Monticola solitarius
13 Blue Tit  Cyanistes caeruleus
14 Bonelli’s Eagle  Aquila fasciata
15 Booted Eagle  Aquila pennata
16 Cattle Egret  Bubulcus ibis
17 Cetti’s Warbler  Cettia cetti
18 Chaffinch  Fringilla coelebs
19 Cirl Bunting Emberiza cirlus
20 Coal Tit  Periparus ater
21 Collared Dove Streptopelia decaocto
22 Common Crossbill  Loxia curvirostra
23 Common Sandpiper  Actitis hypoleucos
24 Coot  Fulica atra
25 Corn Bunting Emberiza calandra
26 Crag Martin  Ptyonoprogne rupestris
27 Crested Lark  Galerida cristata
28 Crested Tit  Lophophanes cristatus
29 Curlew Sandpiper Calidris ferruginea
30 Dartford Warbler  Sylvia undata
31 Dunlin Calidris alpina
32 Ferruginous Duck Aythya nyroca
33 Firecrest  Regulus ignicapilla
34 Flamingo  Phoenicopterus roseus
35 Gadwall  Anas strepera
36 Glossy Ibis Plegadis falcinellus
37 Goldfinch  Carduelis carduelis
38 Great Crested Grebe  Podiceps cristatus
39 Great Spotted Woodpecker  Dendrocopos major
40 Great Tit  Parus major
41 Green Sandpiper  Tringa ochropus
42 Green Woodpecker  Picus viridis
43 Greenfinch  Chloris chloris
44 Grey Heron  Ardea cinerea
45 Griffon Vulture  Gyps fulvus
46 Hawfinch  Coccothraustes coccothraustes
47 Hoopoe  Upupa epops
48 House Martin  Delichon urbicum
49 House Sparrow Passer domesticus
50 Jay  Garrulus glandarius
51 Kentish Plover  Charadrius alexandrinus
52 Kingfisher  Alcedo atthis
53 Lapwing Vanellus vanellus
54 Lesser Black-backed Gull  Larus fuscus
55 Little Egret  Egretta garzetta
56 Little Grebe  Tachybaptus ruficollis
57 Little Ringed Plover  Charadrius dubius
58 Little Stint Calidris minuta
59 Long-tailed Tit  Aegithalos caudatus
60 Mallard  Anas platyrhynchos
61 Mistle Thrush  Turdus viscivorus
62 Monk Parakeet  Myiopsitta monachus
63 Moorhen  Gallinula chloropus
64 Nightingale  Luscinia megarhynchos
65 Nuthatch  Sitta europaea
66 Pallid Swift  Apus pallidus
67 Pied Flycatcher Ficedula hypoleuca
68 Pochard  Aythya ferina
69 Raven  Corvus corax
70 Redshank  Tringa totanus
71 Redstart Phoenicurus phoenicurus
72 Red-crested Pochard  Netta rufina
73 Red-legged Partridge Alectoris rufa
74 Red-necked Nightjar Caprimulgus ruficollis
75 Red-rumped Swallow  Cecropis daurica
76 Ringed Plover Charadrius hiaticula
77 Robin Erithacus rubecula
78 Rock Dove Columba livia
79 Ruff Philomachus pugnax
80 Sanderling  Calidris alba
81 Sardinian Warbler  Sylvia melanocephala
82 Scopoli's Shearwater Calonectris diomedea diomedea
83 Scops Owl Otus scops
84 Short-toed Eagle  Circaetus gallicus
85 Short-toed Treecreeper  Certhia brachydactyla
86 Shoveler  Anas clypeata
87 Sparrowhawk  Accipiter nisus
88 Spectacled Warbler Sylvia conspicillata
89 Spotless Starling  Sturnus unicolor
90 Spotted Flycatcher Muscicapa striata
91 Stonechat  Saxicola torquatus
92 Swift  Apus apus
93 Tawny Owl Strix aluco
94 Teal  Anas crecca
95 Thekla Lark Galerida theklae
96 Turtle Dove Streptopelia turtur
97 Western Olivaceous Warbler Iduna opaca
98 Western Orphean Warbler Sylvia hortensis
99 Whimbrel Numenius phaeopus
100 White-headed Duck  Oxyura leucocephala
101 Wood Pigeon  Columba palumbus
102 Wood Sandpiper Tringa glareola
103 Woodchat Shrike  Lanius senator
104 Wren  Troglodytes troglodytes
105 Yellow Wagtail  Motacilla flava
106 Yellow-legged Gull  Larus michahelis
107 Zitting Cisticola  Cisticola juncidis
Last modified onMonday, 20 March 2017 11:11

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