This week I had the pleasure of guiding two experienced birders from Denmark. Although high summer is not the best time of year, it´s very interesting in terms of viewing Mediterranean breeding species.
Our clients were also keen on bird life photography, so after I collected them from their hotel in Cullera we drove a short distance through the rice paddies to a field where Collared Pratincoles were breeding. From a safe distance, as not to disturb them, we enjoyed great views and were able to get some nice photographs of these stunning birds.
Meanwhile Gull-billed Terns where feeding in the rice paddies. We enjoyed fantastic views of them in flight. Glossy Ibis were also around in good numbers.
Next stop was in a reserve area which is carefully managed to provide habitat for sea birds, waders and waterfowl. Thanks to that we enjoyed amazing views of four Marbled Ducks and one duckling. We also saw Greater Flamingo, Whimbrel, Avocets, Black-winged Stilt and many more waders.
The most interesting sighting of the day was of an Elegant Tern.
Our next stop was in another reserve area. A little patience was rewarded with views of Purple Swamphen, Wood Sandpiper and Bee Eater.
We then stopped beside a small lake and enjoyed views of Audouin´s Gull, Slender-billed Gull, Kentish Plover and Turtle Dove.
We brought the day to a close by driving through more rice paddies. This gave excellent views of Night Heron and provided the opportunity to get some great photos of Squacco Heron.
It had been a wonderful day and a pleasure to guide such enthusiastic people. The species list for the day included…
Marsh Harrier, Kestrel, Marbled Duck, Shelduck, Mallard, Common Pochard, Red-crested Pochard, Greater Flamingo, Glossy Ibis, Great-crested Grebe, Little Grebe, Little Bittern, Grey Heron, Great White Egret, Little Egret, Cattle Egret, Squacco Heron, Night Heron, Purple Swamphen, Moorhen, Coot, Avocet, Kentish Plover, Ringed Plover, Little Ringed Plover, Whimbrel, Black-tailed Godwit, Ruff, Curlew Sandpiper, Dunlin, Little Stint, Snipe, Common Sandpiper, Green Sandpiper, Common Greenshank, Marsh Sandpiper, Wood Sandpiper, Common Redshank, Collared Pratincole, Slender-billed Gull, Black-headed Gull, Mediterranean Gull, Audouin’s Gull, Yellow-legged Gull, Elegant Tern, Gull-billed Tern, Little Tern, Whiskered Tern, Common Tern, Sandwich Tern, Turtle Dove, Swift, Kingfisher, Bee Eater, Magpie, Crested Lark, Sand Martin, Barn Swallow, House Martin, Zitting Cisticola, Blackbird, Spotless Starling, White Wagtail, Goldfinch, Sardinean Warbler, House Sparrow.
Written by Yanina Maggiotto
Bird Watching Guide at Valencia Birding