Nineteen birders found each other, sometimes to their own surprise near the Lesser Kestrel farm at the Zepa of the Estepas de Yecla. Of course some of those birds were seen around, flying or just sitting and looking around. Lots of Barn Swallows, and one Red-rumped Swallow circled the farm and the goats. Calandra Larks were singing their strange song and chasing each other, and on the side of the road the first of many Corn Buntings opened its beak for thrilling tones. Another roadside bird: the modest Short-toed Lark. Everywhere we saw the Thekla Lark. Some good eyes found our first Little Bustard. The bird frequently looked over the growing wheat, showed it´s black and white neck, probably made it´s peculiar call, and then ducked down until it needed to look out again. High over us passed the first couple of Short-toed Eagles, showing their broad light coloured wings.
After the fields and orchards in the Lesser Kestrel farm area we drove slowly past a Meadow Pipit to the dirt road connecting the tarmac roads in the ZEPA. We could feel that the winter rains certainly had not improved the dirt road surface. From the ruin of a farm, usually good for Rock Sparrow, a Little Owl followed our progress. A ravine showed us the results of the force of the water that had been flowing there. At the other side of the ravine a couple of Mistle Thrushes looked wary at the flight of a male Sparrowhawk.
A big farm surrounded by orchards and a wild garden housed Serins, Greenfinches and Goldfinches, House Sparrows, and an unfortunate Spotless Starling that was being caught by a Kestrel.