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Saturday 03 May 2014, Finca Santa Marta, Trujillo, sunny, light N-NW wind, 25C

Today we visited Monfrague National Park. Starting at the castillo we soon spotted Griffon and Black Vulture and a Red-legged Partridge sauntered along in front of our minibus! In the distance we saw Egyptian Vulture and a superb adult Golden Eagle; also at the castle we recorded Short-toed Eagle, Booted Eagle, Great Cormorant, Common Kestrel, Red-rumped Swallow, Crag Martin and Black Restart. Further on at a couple of viewing points we added many Griffon Vulture, Peregrine, Black Stork on its nest, Alpine Swift, Blue Rock Thrush, Black-eared Wheatear, Stonechat and Rock Bunting.
Further into the park we stopped to look at a Spanish Imperial Eagle nest and were rewarded with views of a chick and, later on, close views of a fantastic adult. Despite looking for Eagle Owl we couldn't find one in the craggy rock face but did see a Subalpine Warbler and, in the river below, a playful Eurasian Otter.
Lastly we took a walk through a lovely cork oak wood, bordered by a river and carpeted with wild flowers, and added the following species: Eurasian Sparrowhawk (mobbed by Golden Orioles!), Little-ringed Plover, Common Cuckoo, European Hoopoe, European Bee-eater, Lesser-spotted Woodpecker, Crested Lark, Thekla Lark, Woodlark (including its nest with eggs), Orphean Warbler, Eurasian Nuthatch, Short-toed Treecreeper, Azure-winged Magpie, Woodchat Shrike and Hawfinch. During our journey we also logged Common Magpie, Common Raven, Rock Bunting, Melodious Warbler, Spotted Flycatcher, Dartford Warbler, Rock Sparrow and Cirl Bunting; Turtle Dove was heard.

A great day's birding with some superb sightings!

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