Friday, 24 July 2009

Day one. Warm

With temperatures buzzing around the 40 degree mark and high levels of humidity it seems wise to birding in the morning out here in the southern Costa Blanca so that is what i have done. This morning I had a stroll round La Salina de la Mata in Torrevieja. Was 27 degrees when i headed out at 8am. Quickly I bumped into some Bee-eaters passing overhead in with the Common and Pallid Swifts. Southern Grey and Woodchat Shrikes alighted on the bushes and scolding Sardinian Warblers mocked me. It was bloody warm. A Red-rumped Swallow flew round me for my second ever and best ever views of this species (one that I have dipped a lot this year in the UK). I also saw a few Gulls (med, SB, YL, BH & audouin´s). The Black-necked Grebes are already arriving on La Mata to winter with 500 or so out there. Wader passage is also obvious with a couple of Turnstones and Sanderling in amongst the Kentish Plovers and the Black-winged Stilts. In terms of lifers I scored one - Stone Curlew and one potential in Iberian Green Woodpecker. The curlews were expected as they mooch round the hides calling whilst the woodpecker was a juv, another expected sight after my wife claimed to have seen them here. Also a couple of Swallowtails were nice and a large lizard (50 cm long about half of it tail) zipped across the path. Sorry for the lack of id Mike! All in all greatfun. Photos coming later.

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How brains and birds become mutually exclusive