Some nice photos

12 03 2015

“This is how the entire course of a life can be changed: by doing nothing.”

Chesil Beach, Ian McEwan

It’s been a busy winter. It’s not that I’ve not had the time to post something on the blog, the problem is that there has been so much stuff going on that I’ve not been able to sum it up. It’s quite easy actually: Borolo’s sheawater things in the Canary Islands and twitching in Catalonia.

The project with the shearwaters is going well and the first two birds have been successfully tagged, both reporting data about their unknown foraging range. Since all the information about this is already in the project’ blog post, I’ll focus on some other experiences. First of all, while trying to mistnet shearwaters, we caught several Grant’s storm-petrels. This species is not formally described yet and… oh wait, Stephen already spoke about that too!

Lanzarote 104

Canarias 360

Should I write about the twitching then? Much ink has been already spilled about the Brown shrike at Ebro Delta, the Isabelline shrike at Marjal d’Almenara, the Pygmy cormorant and the Ring-necked duck at exactly the same locality in Aiguamolls de l’Empordà and the local megas (almost first twitchable ever) Rock pipit and Purple sandpiper (both at Ebro Delta and surrounding areas).

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Delta de l'Ebre 147

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So, what’s left? 3 months without posting and you end up showing some lichen photos to add some freshness. Here they go, Lepraria sp. and Xanthoria sp.:

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Canarias 109

Both photos were taken at Fuerteventura. The Eastern Islands are bright like I had never seen them before, both full of flowers that create a stunning carpet. Keeping in mind most of these plants are endemic, the ecological benefits of this year’s rain are invaluable. The photo shows the currently violet surroundings of El Golfo village, due to the flowered Echium lancerottense.

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Echium lancerottense B

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Fuerteventura shows a similar aspect, but what always impresses me the most are the sharp colors of the spurges Euphorbia canariensis. While Stephen was chasing some stonechats, I was taking photos of the scene.

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Canarias 138

So this has ended up being a crappy post with no information and just some nice photos. Trust me, it’s not been that bad…





Ringing in Vietn… Ebro Delta

19 11 2012

“How many senses are needed to obtain a sense of species?”

– Anthony McGeehan, Siberian Chiffchaffs – In from the cold. Birding World 289.

The Montseny mountains were beautiful, but their effect in me has not held out more than 5 days. After all the week working in front of the computer, I still missed the fall. Fortunately, I had to ring all the weekend at Ebro Delta, maybe the best place within a 3h radius to enjoy diversity and migration.

The weather forecast predicted rain, always exciting when you are ringing, so I expected something good. However, as soon as I reached the Canal Vell Biological Station, the guy who had been ringing the previous days alerted me about the coot shooting planned in the lagoon for the day after. Bad news.

Andrea S. & Andrea G. (aka The Andreas) would came with me but Andrea S. arrived late at night, so we had to pick her up at the train station. Thanks to that, we were able to see thousands of crabs recklessly crossing the road, but specially a stunning short-eared owl ripping a mouse.

The day after, the Biological Station seemed the fucking Vietnam, with more than 200 guys armed to the teeth and shooting coots on the quiet. In the middle of that mess, we caught a few birds, most of them chiffchaffs. Among them, a nice Siberian-like with the whole set of features, including the call. All-dark bill and legs, no yellow in the upper-parts, complete white/cream eye-ring, warm cheeks, green primary edges, short wing… Interesting to see, but I would had been happier with an obvious and well-defined yellow-browed warbler.

Yesterday it was another hard day in the field, with scattered-showers all day long and a few birds in the mist-nets. The lagoon was almost empty of birds. After the hunt, some of them had gone and some of them were dead. Incredibly, today lots of coots had already come back, together with teals and wigeons. The sun appeared again and the birds started to fall into the nets. My time at Ebro Delta expired at 12AM, but I have had time enough to catch another Siberian-like with a wing length even shorter. It didn’t stop calling when I was aging it; it’s worth to underline that fact since most of putative “whatever” I had catch like to go away quietly. In opposite of the previous bird, that one had not the bill completely black. The rest of the characters matched well. Nice days, but more to come…








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