Wednesday, 8 March 2017

Spain - Saucedilla - Being Savi in the Swamp!

I spent the day at Saucedilla which is a large area of wetland NE of Trujillo. The reserve has six hides overlooking the area all you have to do is register at the information centre and a key for the hides is issued. A key drop box is provided for people who remain on the reserve after the centre closes (It was still open at 6pm tonight).

I arrived at first light 0730hrs and the whole area was fog bound. I took a walk down to hide one noting a Black-winged Stilt that had been forced down by the fog. I used the fog as cover to skulk about to watch the Purple Swamphen moving between the reeds. I heard several Savi’s Warblers reeling away but could not see any of the birds. I moved down the track and saw Red-rumped Swallow sat on the top of a fence.

More Swamphen were seen along with Zitting Cisticola, Chiffchaff, Robin, larks and hirundines. I walked beyond hide two before I made my way back to the beginning of the route.

The information centre opened around 0900hrs and I obtained a key for the hides. Ths Savi’s had stopped reeling at around 1000hrs this coincided with the sun completing its work clearing the fog. I hoped to get better pictures of the birds but of course they were not so keen to walk out in the open.

Post fog I recorded Water Rail, Reed bunting, Gadwall and Snipe. Great White Egret at hide two and five. Black Redstart and Marsh Harrier at hide four. If I had not been such an elephant exiting the hide I would surely have got pictures of the redstart which was perched on top of the gate to the hide.

I spent the last couple of hours listening out for Savi’s but they were not heard again. A life bird that has slipped the net for now!

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