Yecla, Almansa and Petrola by Stephan and Els

posted in: Birders Reports | 0
Great Bustards by Bryan Thomas©
Great Bustards by Bryan Thomas©

The second day of the year gives a good opportunity to shorten the ‘to do’ list for 2015. So we were on the road early to see some birds that are not that abundant in our semi coastal region. The ZEPA between Yecla and Almansa bestowed us with 5 Great Bustards, 2 Black-bellied and 2 Pin-tailed Sandgrouse, 1 juvenile Bonelli´s Eagle, and among a lot of Skylarks only 1 Calandra Lark.

The Petrola area gave us a surprise – most of the water surface was frozen. We saw less birds than we are used to seeing here in winter. Only 1 Flamingo busied itself to keep the water fluid. The road between the salina lake and the little lake is again passable and several birds searched the shore here for food, including Kentish Plover, Dunlin, Little Stint, several Pied Wagtails, Meadow Pipits and 1 Water Pipit.
The road towards the windmills between Petrola and Corral Rubio gave great views of red soil, green shoots of wheat and the occasional birdlike stone until a group of 7 Great Bustards assembled alongside. For their friends we had to wait till the road between Corral Rubio and Bonete. First a group of 7, and then, very close to Bonete, the A31, and a farmer with a big agricultural engine, a group of 23. We totalled up our sightings to reach a total of 46 species.