We started the afternoon crossing a forested area mostly composed of cork oak woodland and umbrella pine stands. Several interesting species were recorded in this habitat  including Hoopoe, Bee-eater, Serin, Nightingale, Spotless Starling, Southern Grey Shrike, Crested Tit, Iberian Chiffchaff (1 heard singing in a pine stand), Western Bonelli’s Warbler (several heard singing in the cork oak woodland), Melodious Warbler, Sardinian Warbler, Short-toed Treecreeper and Rock Sparrow.

Along the way several other specialities were recorded either flying over or using the adjacent agricultural and aquatic habitats, such as Greater Flamingo, Glossy Ibis, Spoonbill, Cattle Egret, Little Egret, White Stork, Marsh Harrier, Black Kite, Booted Eagle (1 pale morph), Bonelli’s Eagle (1 ad. + 1 sub-ad. interacting with the Booted Eagle), Short-toed Eagle, Pallid Swifts, Short-toed Lark (singing over some recently ploughed fields), Cetti’s Warbler, Zitting Cisticola and Common Waxbill.

We finished the tour by visiting a remote complex of abandoned saltpans, that lies adjacent to an extensive saltmarsh area, located in a private estate. The very low disturbance levels in this area are always a guarantee of good observations. This time a group of well over 1.500 Greater Flamingos were observed from very close in the adjacent saltmarsh. At least 70 Avocets, 50 Black-winged Stilts, 20 Little Terns and 20 Black-tailed Godwits were using the salt ponds, along with 3-4 pairs of Shelducks. In the distance one Great Egret revealed itself by flying over to an adjacent pond. A careful last look at the mixed group of Avocets, Black-winged Stilts and Little Terns with the telescope revealed a pair of Collared Pratincoles that otherwise would go unnoticed.

On our way back (on a diferente road) there was still opportunity to observe a beautiful Woodchat Shrike and to hear one more Iberian Chiffchaff and several other Western Bonelli’s Warblers. A total of 71 species were recorded during this tour.

Good observations!

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