Mar 282014
 

This week, I was fotunate enough to meet David and Susan from UK.  They were taking a city break in Valencia and had previously arranged a day of guided bird watching with me.

Both scientists and keen nature lovers, they were interested to see the diverse bird life of Albufera de Valencia and the surrounding wetlands.

Black Winged Stilt

Black Winged Stilt

 

We began our day at Tancat de la Pipa, a fantastic reserve within the Albufera Natural Park.  Run by an extremely dedicated team, this reserve provides critical habitat to a huge array of bird species, as well as supporting a fantastically diverse eco-system.  As we walked through the reserve, we enjoyed close views of Greater Flamingo, Black Winged Stilt, Avocet and huge numbers of Little Ringed Plovers.

Little Ringed Plover

Little Ringed Plover

Swallows, House Martins and Sand Martins were feeding above the reedbeds.  Fan Tailed Warblers were also flitting around the reeds and we heard the beautiful song of Cetti´s Warbler.

Greater Flamingoes

Greater Flamingoes

As we walked further into the reserve, we had a stunning view of a Glossy Ibis in flight, the sunlight picking out the green, purple and bronze colouration of its plumage.  We also had great views of Black Tailed Godwit, Purple Swamphen and Ruff.

Glossy Ibis

Glossy Ibis

Once inside the visitor centre, we enjoyed a presentation on the history and ecology of the reserve followed by a discussion on the future of conservation in Spain.  The reserve staff at Tancat de la Pipa work tirelessly to attract children and young people to the reserve and to raise awareness of the need to protect the natural environment.  This was of particular interest to Susan as she is instrumental in attracting children in the UK to the fascinating world of geology.

Purple Swamphen

Purple Swamphen

We then had a picnic lunch by one of the original fishing ports of Albufera before making our way to another of Valencia´s wetlands.  We enjoyed a leisurely walk along the coastal dunes and lagoons where we enjoyed views of Yellow Wagtail, Stonechat, yet more Purple Swamphens and Red Crested Pochard.  The day was brought to a close with views of a male White Headed Duck.

White Headed Duck

White Headed Duck

The species list for the day included :

Marsh Harrier, Kestrel, Swallow, House Martin, Sand Martin, Chiffchaff, Yellow Wagtail, White Wagtail, Greenfinch, Goldfinch, House Sparrow, Spotless Starling, Cormorant, Yellow Legged Gull, Black Headed Gull, Little Grebe, Great Crested Grebe, Mallard, Pochard, Shoveler, Red Crested Pocahard, White Headed Duck, Moorhen, Coot, Purple Swamphen, Grey Heron, Little Egret, Cattle Egret, Black Tailed Godwit, Redshank, Ruff, Little Ringed Plover, Black Winged Stilt, Glossy Ibis, Greater Flamingo

David Warrington

 

Written by David Warrington.

Bird Watching Guide at Valencia Birding

  2 Responses to “Birding at Albufera & Valencia´s Coastal Wetlands”

  1. Thank you David, we both had a really marvellous time. Difficult to choose best bird – Susan goes for the Purple Swamphen and Yellow Wagtail, I’ll take the Glossy Ibis and Marsh Harrier, plus Stonechat bonus – and special place for Little Ringed Plovers since seeing them in the UK was such an exciting event when we were young..
    David & Susan.
    PS. Heard our first English Chiff-Chaff vesterday – in Finsbury Park……!

    • Good evening, the Purple Swamphen is often a favourite but the quality of light made the Glossy Ibis very special too. Well done on the Chiff-Chaff…Spring must be officially here now! Best wishes to you both. David.

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