Areas around Santa Pola, El Hondo and El Pinet

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25Sept1Today we joined the CBBC field trip around our local area. It was great to catch up with people we haven’t seen since before the Summer, and to meet new people who came along for the first time. A scan of the salinas found us a distant Great White Egret and a Spoonbill which took off and flew towards us before landing again just out of sight. The usual Greater Flamingos were on the far lagoon and several species of tern flew around. Our next stop was a visit to a new lagoon which has been created by the local Spanish bird group, AHSA (click here for details of their work) AHSA . This new reserve, although quiet when we visited, looks like it could be a good spot for birds in the future. In fact Collared Pratincoles nested here this year and hopefully they will use the site again in the future. The site is not an easy place to find but that might prove beneficial to the birds. While we were there a female Marsh Harrier was flying over the nearby reeds and a Booted Eagle flew over head. We also heard Reed Buntings singing, which seemed a bit strange this late in the year. From here we moved to the back gate of El Hondo where I spotted a Yellow Wagtail as it flew away. Other members were lucky to see a Kingfisher flying away down one of the water channels but sadly I missed it! We all moved on to El Pinet in the hope of seeing Collared Pratincoles which Barry said had been there on Saturday, but when we arrived they were no longer around. By way of consolation we did find 2 or 3 Stone Curlew sitting amongst the rocks on the edge of the lagoon and on one of the islands. A few Black winged Stilts and Avocets were feeding on the lakes, along with four Sanderling and a Redshank. While some of the members went off to enjoy a nice lunch, we headed home hoping we were not going to miss any rarities!