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Sunday 04 May 2014, Finca Santa Marta, Trujillo, Extremadura, mostly sunny, light N-NE wind, 27C

Our last day in Extremadura start early as we headed to Llanos de Santa Magasca to look for Black-bellied Sandgrouse. Arriving just before sunrise we soon heard the 'raspberry' call of displaying Pin-tailed Sandgrouse but couldn't find its black-belied cousin; we did, however get some good sightings including great views of Great Bustard, also Black Vulture, Montagu's Harrier, Little Bustard, Pin-tailed Sandgrouse, Great White Egret, Great-spotted Cuckoo, Calandra Lark, Short-toed Lark, Whinchat and Northern Wheatear; Common Quail was heard. All well worth getting up at 0545hrs for!

After breakfast we drove up to the heathland at Jaraicejo via a river stop where we saw Little-ringed Plover, Green Sandpiper, European Bee-eater at their nest colony and Cirl Bunting. At the heath we found our target species of Spectacled Warbler, including two displaying males, and also prolonged views of Dartford Warbler.

Our next stop was Arrocampo, where a nature reserve has been created from old nuclear power station cooling water ponds. Despite being quite an industrial area there were many birds around including Black Stork, Purple Heron, Little Egret, Cattle Egret, Little Bittern, Purple Swamphen on nest, Common Kingfisher, Common Sandpiper, Black-winged Stilt, our first Sand Martin of the week, Savi's Warbler and Spanish Sparrow.

Finally, we returned to our hotel via Monfrague National Park which gave us another chance to look for Eagle Owl at Portillo del Tieter; this time we were not disappointed as an adult was taking advantage of the shade within a cave. Here we also saw Peregrine, Blue Rock Thrush, Black Redstart and in the nearby wood Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Short-toed Treecreeper and Orphean Wabler.

During our journey we also logged our first Eurasian Jay, Common Cuckoo, Southern Grey Shrike and Hoopoe. A great day's birding to finish our trip!

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