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Monday 16 March 2015, Gaucin, mostly sunny, calm air-light SW wind, 15C

Some great sightings today, including 3 species of Harrier, as raptors took advantage of the calm south-westerly winds to cross the straits. A visit to the SW slope of El Hacho from 0900-1030hrs was largely uneventful; apart from a distant female Marsh Harrier following the Guadiaro valley, and thinking that I might have heard a Ring Ouzel, it was all rather unexciting. There were a lot of displaying Sardinian Warbler, a few Corn Bunting, one female Black Redstart, 2 Song Thrush, several Linnet and a couple of Cirl Bunting. As I was leaving I checked once more for Ring Ouzel and was rewarded with at least 2 on the slopes just off the Gaucin-Algeciras road. All of a sudden the sky got more exciting with many raptors passing over at a reasonable height including 200+ Black Kite, 3 adult Egyptian Vulture, a male Hen Harrier and a couple of Short-toed Eagle.
Back in the 1200hrs there were 50+ Black Kite; at 1230hrs another 50+ Black Kite, plus 1 Eurasian Sparrowhawk and 1 female Montagu's Harrier; at 1245hrs 2 Black Stork; at 1300hrs a male Montagu's Harrier and at 1430hrs a further 80+ Black Kite and a couple of Short-toed Eagle. It would have been wonderful to have watched all day but, sadly, real life butted in and I had to tear myself away from the action!

male Cirl Bunting
Distant, but definite! Ring Ouzel

Ring Ouzel - hidden, as ever, deep in the shrubs

Short-toed Eagle

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