14 August : a rapid visit to Laguna Dulce

Having awoken very early when there were still stars in the sky (not really, it was quite misty but it sounds good) I decided to undertake an early, rapid run to the Laguna Dulce at Campillos after Bob had phoned last evening to tell me that it was wall-to-wall birds and that he had seen a nice male Ferruginous Duck there yesterday afternoon. I also wanted to be on the way back early becase of the traffic which at this moment must be blocking Las Pedrizas and which I experienced last week on the way back from the flamingo ringing.

Needlessto say, no Ferruginous Duck but half the Andalusian population of Coots - you trying to find a Red-knobbed Coot in that lot unless it's under your nose and waving a bright blue flag! There were a lot of Red-crested Pochards which seem to have had a good breeding season, and plenty of other duck spp. with a few Gadwall, Shoveler, Mallards of course, some White-headed Ducks and some Pochards. It was nice too to see a good supply of Black-necked Grebes whilst Swallows, House Martins and the occasional Sand Martin fed over and through the columns of mossies over the reeds on the right looking from the hide.

There was a bit of mud in front of the hide where there were 3 or 4 Little Ringed Plovers - all juvs., one each of Green and Wood Sandpiper, a single Lapwing further over and a single Reed Warbler flitted amongst the reeds right under the observation holes (one can hardly call them windows). There was also a single juv. Purple Boghen. All short and sweet and nothing outstanding but I missed the traffic also!

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