Field Trip – Barranco de la Encantada – Malcolm Palmer

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Some 22 members of the Costa Blanca Bird Club met at Planes on a beautiful spring morning for their May excursion, into which a great deal of work had been put by Fran, even to the extent of producing maps to hand out to drivers!

We set off to the lovely Barranco de la Encantada, where Nightingales sang everywhere, as did Blackcaps. The mellow whistle of Golden Oriole was soon heard, but birds were hard to see through the dense foliage. When we parked and walked around, a Melodious Warbler was soon identified, then tantalising glimpses of Golden Oriole were had by some! A Garden Warbler was equally shy, and a Cirl Bunting soon gave brief views. We drove around in a big loop, and parked to take a woodland walk. Some members were fortunate enough to get good views of a Bonelli’s Warbler, typically in evergreen oak, and a Bee Orchid was admired. As I walked back towards the car, I managed to see another shy bird – a Wren.

We took lunch in a mountain village, eating on a very attractive terrace, with Red-rumped Swallows flying past. A shade more expensive than is our custom, the food was nice, if they might have been a touch more generous with the wine! After lunch we headed down to the river which feeds the reservoir – more Golden Orioles gave views to some, whilst there was little of note under the hot sun. Some members visited a boardwalk further down the reservoir, seeing Great Reed Warblers and Corn Buntings, but this was not a day when we were destined to find rare birds.