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Tuesday 15 April 2014, Gaucin, mostly cloudy am, mostly sunny pm, light SE wind, 23C

The dry, warm weather continues and this morning Janys, Fred and I headed off to Rio Palmones at Los Barrios (birding with a bit of shopping thrown in!). On the way down we saw a Little Owl perched on a wire near Jimena de la Frontera and several Lesser Kestrel at the colony beside the Rio Hozgarganta. We timed our arrival for low tide around 1000hrs but even so it was a bit quiet on the banks other than Eurasian Sparrowhawk, Yellow-legged Gull, Black-headed Gull, Little Egret, the lovely sight of 2x European Spoonbill sweeping their bills from side-to-side in a frantic feeding display, a few Redshank, a Greenshank, 2x Grey Plover, 2x Eurasian Oystercatcher, Dunlin, a couple of Kentish Plover and a nice flava Yellow Wagtail. After a quick coffee we dropped Janys at the shops and Fred and I headed over the river to the hide on the other side of the marsh. We had a bit more luck here with views of a distant perched Osprey, Common Buzzard, 2x Common Raven, Grey Heron, Cattle Egret, 8 Black-winged Stilt, more Redshank, 2x Greenshank, Woodchat Shrike, Crested Lark, Common Nightingale and Bonelli's Warbler.

Black-winged Stilt

Cattle Egret

Back in Gaucin the Calle Convento/Calle del Pino Swift flock now numbers 150+ and was performing well all evening!
Tim also reported 2 immature Common Crossbill in pines in the village, 6 Lesser Kestrel in Jimena, a Marsh Harrier in San Pablo and 50+ Black Kite circling over El Hacho during the morning (despite my assertion that SE winds bring no migrating raptors over the village!).

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