Mary’s Blog – El Clot

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Friday 17th February

We needed a quiet time after our long day out in the Albacete Province. In the morning we had a walk on the beach and a paddle (yes really) in the sea which was pretty cold.

After lunch it was back to our local patch of the Clot. We decided to visit the four main hides starting with the one to the left which we have always called the dry hide or marsh hide. (Hide A on map).

We sat watching Shoveler, Little Grebe, Red-crested Pochard and various other things when I spotted a little brownish duck lurking in amongst the reeds. It was difficult to identify as it kept disappearing out of sight. Then I had an idea that it might possibly be a Ferruginous Duck, a species that has been seen here for the last few years, albeit usually only distant views. I did a quick check of images on the Internet and then sat waiting and hoping it would come out so we could get a good look at it. Amazingly, it did come out and even better it was not alone! Happy days!

After taking lots of photos we moved on to the new hide (hide B on map) where there were a few more ducks and grebe plus plenty of gulls on the water, before they were put up by a Marsh Harrier overhead.

Moving on to the scrape (Hide C on the map) we found a few nice Gadwall, Teal and Marbled Duck which are always good to see.

Finally, we ended up in the main hide (Hide D on the map) where we enjoyed watching the usual species and once again found a Little Bittern in the far reeds along with two juvenile Night Herons. There was a bit of excitement when a Kingfisher appeared from the left of the hide and flew all the way across the pool to the right hand reed beds. It was just like a blue flash but it took a while to cover the distance so we had a reasonable view of it. Another enjoyable afternoon in the Clot.