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Day 2 (Tuesday, 15th November)

Dunes

Castillo

The interior of the dunes

Rocky ground looking seaward at Castillo de Romero

The return here had an unexpected first hour or so. I arrived at the on street parking just after 7am, and decided to walk along the seaward end of the lagoon towards the sand dunes (and ranks of sun beds on the adjoining beach). They at first look like the imposing strength sapping mounds of sand, but a few minutes trudge towards the interior reveals a relatively well vegetated base with quite hard compacted ground to walk on. I had been excited by the (albeit unlikely) potential of such birds as Cream-coloured Courser here, due to signs next to the boulevard seemingly indicating a possibility of reintroduction or even re-colonisation. The reality may be that despite the potential which was apparent, and the presence of commoner birds such as Sardinian Warbler, Chiffchaffs, Canaries, Kestrel and Hoopoe, I also suspect that this is heavily trafficked by tourists, witnessed by the amount of footprints and waste bins throughout.

An hour or so back at the chaca followed. The Greater Flamingo present the previous visit seemed to leave seawards earlier, but was back again at its favoured spot at the sea end of the lagoon on my return. Predominant birds were again Coot (lesser numbers of Moorhen), but the Ruddy Shelduck were back on the exposed mud (with an increased number of 11) and stayed around this time. There was only 1 Spoonbill with the 5 Grey Herons and single Little Egret, but there were slightly more waders – 8 Greenshank, 2 Curlew Sandpipers, and 6 Little Ringed Plovers. Surprisingly, the only new trip species was a single Swallow flying over the lagoon – still no sign at any part of the island of any swift species, which may indicate that they are more of a breeding visitor than the books would indicate. Only 1 group of 4 Rose-ringed Parakeets flew through, but the Spanish Sparrows and Waxbills were again in the reeds next to the boulevard fence.

Common Waxbill

Spanish Sparrow

Common Waxbill

Spanish Sparrow

Ruddy Shelduck

Little Egret

Ruddy Shelduck

Little Egret

With the tourists at Maspalomas starting to proliferate, I drove a short way further North-east to the rocky area just South of Castillo de Romero. According to some of the reports, this was a potential area for Lesser Short-toed Lark. After finding a parking spot next to here, I began to track over the very rocky ground, noting that there was a line of coastal scrub dividing this plain of rock and the shingle of the beach. I headed towards and behind a pink and green building, skirting the scrub, to find a semi tidal lagoon further on, which was surprisingly quiet apart from a quartet of Sanderling. However, despite the absence of the larks, there were many Berthelot’s Pipits, and a Southern Grey Shrike next to the building. Nevertheless, a couple of surprises were unearthed – the low scrub was a good area for Spectacled Warbler, and an Osprey was found on one of the telegraph wires with a fish that it had presumably just caught from the sea. All in all a worthwhile visit here, and the potential for Lesser Short-toed Larks can clearly be seen, but there is a chance that they are now not here or move around outside of the breeding season.

Southern Grey Shrike

Berthelot's Pipit

Southern Grey Shrike

Berthelot's Pipit

Home

Paintings gallery

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Contact

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Introduction

Day 1

Day 2

Species list

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