Its worth a visit

Friday 9th of September Rio Guasdalhorce (the bird reserve at Malaga

27/09/2011 17:15

We arrived in Malaga with great anticipationas my partner on this trip had enjoyed some good birding experiences at this site.The site of 3 Purple Herons near the entrance of the site promised much.

There was 3 Great White Heron,1 Greenshank and 12 Goldfinches on the first small pool.

The first hide we came upon gave us good views of 2 White headed duck 6 Little Grebe,42 Common Coot,8 Gadwall,2 Common Pochard and single Little Egret.

Birds were surprisingly thin on the ground on the reserve but the lagoons still remained interesting with observations of single Wood warbler,2 Kingfisher.and a single European Turtle Dove

The second hide held more promise with single White Headed Duck,3 Mediteranean gulls,2 Ruff,2 immature Audouins gulls both immature and a single Turtle Dove immediately on view.

There was a constant tooin and frowing of Gulls to the lagoon with one party of around 150 Black Headed Gulls arriving at one go and several parties of mainly Lesser Black Backed gulls dropping in to bath themselves.

Outside the 2nd hide we observed our first Great Reed warbler,2 Olivaceouse warblers,single Pied flycatcher and several parties of Monk Parakeets.

The 3rd hide we came across gave good viewsver the reserve but still birds were difficult to observe.A little Bittern crahed into the reeds and disapeared from view,2 Little Egrets were in front of the hide.A pale phase Booted eagle was over the hide for some time at around 14:00 hours(see photogallery).2 marsh harriers a female and juvenile hunted frequently over the main reed bed in front of the hide.

The fourth hide was a bit distant from the lagoon which it overlooked but after much patient searching we managed to observe 2 Greenshank,2 curlew Sandpiper,4 Dunlin,2 Common Sandpipers,2 Avocet,1 Kentish plover,2 Spotted Redshanks,12 Little ringed Plover,2 Ringed Plovers and 2 Marsh Sandpipers.

We arrived at the sea watching hide around 16:00 hours and we were surprised to find it extremely quiet.There as no sign of any terns whatsoever and apart from a handfull of Gannets passing on the horizon very few seabirds of any kind.A single Purple Swamphen was in front of the 3rd hide as we made our way out of the reserve.

We made our way back to Rute via the sewage ponds there and was amazed to see at least 50 European Bee eaters attacking the bee hives there.This went on for about 30 minutes before the birds departed to the south.