This morning, after a brief look at the many migrating waders now congregating on the saltpans here in Tavira, we spent an hour or more in the car, parked in the corner of a field at the edge of town.
From that one spot we watched numerous Northern Wheatears, Whinchats, Yellow Wagtails (of three different races), four Greater Short-toed Larks, a Common Redstart, a Tawny Pipit, Bee-eaters, a pair of Woodchat Shrikes, a couple of Hoopoes and several Crested Larks. At the same time, two Common Quails were calling.
It was quite a sight and we enjoyed it so much that we returned in the afternoon to take another look! Presumably the easterly wind that has been chilling us for a few days has also held up some of these birds on their way north.
Also this afternoon we went and checked on the small local Bee-eater colony where we watched four pairs of birds apparently preparing to nest. It looked as though the Stone-curlews in the same area may already have nested - both birds were standing in the middle of a field in full view. We were already having a good day but it was rounded off by the unusual sight of nine Purple Herons flying east over the Tavira saltpans.
Actually, it wasn't quite rounded off because on the short drive home we had nice views of a Water Rail!
1 week ago