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Saturday 12 March 2016, Gaucin, sunny, calm air-light S-SE wind, 15C

Despite what seemed ideal conditions, I didn't see a single migrating raptor today! On Wednesday lunchtime there was a first winter Blue Rock Thrush singing from a rooftop in Calle Convento and in the evening there was a Common Swift in with a small group of House Martin around the old convent building. At 08:00hrs on Thursday there was a Common Crossbill calling from cypresses just along from the petrol station.

An afternoon visit to the Rio Genal on Friday produced Griffon Vulture, Short-toed Eagle, Common Buzzard, Eurasian Sparrowhawk, 2 Green Sandpiper, Little-ringed Plover, Common Kingfisher, Grey Wagtail, Blackcap and Common Chiffchaff.

This afternoon, in calm, warm conditions for once, I checked out the west slope of El Hacho. No exciting migrants to report but I did see 20+ Griffon Vulture, Short-toed Eagle, Peregrine, Common Kestrel, Red-legged Partridge (heard), Southern Grey Shrike (not seen for some time so glad to know it's still around), Blue Rock Thrush, Song Thrush, Black Redstart (still a few around, but numbers are noticeably down on winter peaks), Meadow Pipit, Stonechat, Sardinian Warbler, Dartford Warbler (heard), Linnet and Cirl Bunting.

A good find was a Bumble Bee Ophrys - not the rarest orchid but quite hard to see here.

Gaucin and the Sierra Bermeja

Bumble Bee Ophrys Ophrys bombyliflora

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