Bird Watching at Albufera de Valencia

Bird Watching at Albufera de Valencia

On Tuesday 8th January, together with two local birders, I enjoyed a leisurely day in the Natural Park of Albufera de Valencia.  We began our day by generally exploring some of the rice fields on the west side of the park. The usual Little Egrets, Cattle Egrets and Grey Herons were in abundance in amongst which were a five Great Egrets. A female Marsh Harrier passed low over the stubble, flushing out a Snipe. A pair of Stonechats were flitting around the edges of a field and an Iberian Grey Shrike spent a few minutes on an overhead cable close [read more]

A Christmas Birding Trip to the Steppe & Lagoons of Eastern Spain

A Christmas Birding Trip to the Steppe & Lagoons of Eastern Spain

On 22nd December, we provided a guided bird watching trip to the steppe and lagoons for a client from the Netherlands. Norbert, a very well travelled and experienced birder was holidaying in the Valencia area and was keen to see the bird life that this superb region has to offer. The morning had dawned bright and clear but as we climbed up onto the steppe, it became quite cloudy with a little light drizzle in the air. After a coffee in a local farming village, we set out across the fields towards the day´s first lagoon. Something caught our eye [read more]

Another amazing day at the Valencian Coastal Wetlands!

Another amazing day at the Valencian Coastal Wetlands!

On 4th December, we arranged a trip to the Valencian Coastal Wetlands for a group of 8 local birders. After the obligatory morning coffee, we parked the van near the beach. The day got off to a fantastic start the moment we got out of the van with immediate views of a Kingfisher perched on a reed overhanging a small canal. Things then turned from the sublime to the ridiculous as a bright green bird flew by…one that we identified as a budgerigar!! After some discussion about whether we could include it on the list, we headed to the first [read more]

Guided Birding in Valencia

Guided Birding in Valencia

On Sunday 21st October, I spent a very enjoyable day with some great clients from Kidderminster, UK.  Stella and Richard are both keen nature lovers and in recent years have been particularly interested in birds.  They were keen to explore the Valencian wetlands and to see the classic species of this diverse area. We started our day at one of the reserves within the natural park of Albufera de Valencia where we began by scanning the lake for wildfowl. We soon had good views of Red Crested Pochard, Shelduck and Teal. We also had great views of both male and [read more]

Guided Birding in Valencia.

Guided Birding in Valencia.

After an interesting drive around the narrow streets of the historic quarter of Valencia, I met up with today´s clients Hannah and Alex. They were on a short break in Valencia and had previously arranged a day of guided bird watching with us.  Both keen birders, and obviously well-travelled they were keen to see some of the key species that the Valencian wetlands hold. We took a short drive along the coast and after the obligatory morning coffee we began our walk along the coast to visit some small lagoons. The day started very well, with good views of Little [read more]

Ladies´ Birding Group Trip to the Mountains of Valencia

Ladies´ Birding Group Trip to the Mountains of Valencia

On 11th May, I returned to the mountains, this time with a Ladies´Bird Watching Group.  After the morning coffee stop we set out into a beautiful mountain gorge.  The weather was hot and sunny but once in the gorge we soon found a shady spot from which to rest and watch the bird life. Griffon Vultures were around in good numbers, soaring effortlessly on the thermals. Some were resting on the cliffs which provided great opportunities to appreciate the sheer size of these magnificent creatures. We made steady progress up into the gorge before finding another comfortable stopping point from [read more]

Bird Watching in Valencia

Bird Watching in Valencia

On 27th April, we enjoyed a great day of birding at the Valencian Coastal Wetlands with a group of British birders.  After the obligatory morning coffee by the sea, we set out along the dunes where we enjoyed good views of Moustached Warbler in the adjoining reeds and a Turtle Dove on a telephone wire. The first lagoon provided nice views of White Headed Duck and Little Bittern and a little further along the track we stopped to watch a Great Reed Warbler sat up in the reeds in full view. Our next stopping point beside another lagoon gave good [read more]

A Pre-Christmas Trip up onto the Steppe.

A Pre-Christmas Trip up onto the Steppe.

One of my important roles as a birding guide is to constantly visit my favoured sites as many times as possible throughout the year. This is essential in order to maintain and develop knowledge of an area and it´s changing characteristics and bird life throughout the seasons. That way, we ensure that our clients are taken to the sites that are “at their best” whenever their visit may take place. That today´s trip meant that I avoided having to go Christmas shopping only seemed to reinforce its value! Our destination was the vast upland Steppe of Castilla de la Mancha, some [read more]

El Hondo

El Hondo

Not within our usual birding area, El Hondo is a wetland reserve of major international importance, not least for it´s population of White Headed Duck and Marbled Duck.  Although not a regular venue for us, El Hondo always provides something of interest. We were fortunate to enjoy some beautiful autumn sunshine as we set off across the reserve.  Within just five minutes we were delighted to see 3 Cranes passing overhead, shortly followed by a lone Booted Eagle.  As we made our way through the reedbeds, we watched as a Marsh Harrier hunted by the shore of the lake.  We stopped and set up the [read more]

An Afternoon at Albufera de Valencia

An Afternoon at Albufera de Valencia

As we had business to attend to in Valencia today, the opportunity to spend a couple of hours looking what was around Albufera couldn´t be missed. We started at the main hide, where we were greeted by a group of school children on a day trip! Although not the quiet environment that we expected, it has to be remembered that this is where the future of conservation lies. We soon attracted a small group of kids who were curious to see what the telescope was and soon had a small queue forming to watch the Flamingoes that were resting at [read more]

Valencian Rice Fields.

Valencian Rice Fields.

This morning, I spent a couple of hours wandering around one of my local patches which consists mainly of rice fields. When in flood the Valencian rice fields attract a variety of birds, including passing migrants, which make it an ideal area for bird watching in Spain.  The day got off to a good start – as soon as we got out of the car, a pair of pale form Booted Eagles passed over. They were relatively low so we enjoyed great views. They spent a while quartering the hillsides looking for prey before they drifted off into the distance, although [read more]