Trip report: Fiona and friends, Cabo de Gata. May 2016.
The morning was fine and bright and full of promise as Fiona,Margaret,Martin and David pulled up at our meeting point outside the first hide at Cabo de Gata – after travelling across from Vera. Introductions were made all round then it was on to the business of the day. The Flamingoes out on the lagoons made the first big impression. We counted around 300. Yellow Wagtails were calling and a Spoonbill was on the stone causeway but as is often the way it kept it’s head tucked away,fast asleep most of the time. Several waders were seen including Kentish Plover,Avocet and Black winged Stilt. A group of 4 Knot in brick red summer plumage was a nice surprise. Several Slender-billed Gulls were picking insects off the lagoon surface. We then drove past Cabo de Gata village and parked the cars near the Guardia tower where we had great views of Spotless Starling.
As we were walking to the second hide a stunning male Grey Plover showed well and we added Iberian Grey Shrike to our list. Stone Curlew and Fan-tailed Warbler were heard. More Slender-bills were seen along with Little Tern. At the third hide we found a number of Gull-billed and Sandwich Terns with the rare Audouin’s Gull mixed in plus Sanderling, Redshank and Ringed Plover. Martin was particularly delighted to see the Audouin’s Gulls
Moving on we had coffee and a short break then headed round the back of the lagoons.. Crested and Thekla Larks were present here but sadly our time was coming to an end. Just as we were walking back to the cars two large eagles made a very brief appearance over the mountains but we couldn’t identify them as they only appeared for a second or two. Just time for a photo of a very happy group and to say our goodbyes at the end of a very enjoyable morning.