19/03 : Fuente de Piedra (yet again)

I can hear you thinking, why is the daft old bat so interested in Fuente de Piedra? Can it be the attraction of a couple of Lesser Flamingos? Well, you're getting warm as it is the attraction of the Lessers.
If you read the Saturday visit blog which was published yesterday (Sunday) and if you managed to get to the end, you will know that Mick Richardson had seen 7 Lessers yesterday lunchtime and also know of my dilemma, to go or not to go. So this morning I went. Early.
Like there by 08.30 early and it was cold but that way there would be (a) no school trips yet and thus no noise, (b) the light would be good with no heat shimmer to spoil observation and (c) there may be little to no wind - and there wasn't and the lake was like a mirror and it always at its best first thing in the morning. So, alone at the mirador, I started scoping.
There were 3 Lessers in with the mass of Greaters at the fresh water inlet over to the left (photo above R) and as all flamenco species have notable size differences between males and females (sexual dimorphism) I made it 2 males and 1 female. I continued scanning right and came across a very distant solitary bird and as there was no comparison, no sexing possible, and then over to right of centre another pair, male and female. Total 6 birds. As to where number 7 is, I would guess that it was way down in the region of the colony.
So I wandered up to the office and had a chat with Araceli, the research assistant, and she told me that this past two weeks she has regularly been seeing up to 4 birds, 2 pairs, in courtship display. We live in hope of successful breeding this year!

After that I had time for a quick walk around the flash and along the board walk, notching up 2 Shelducks, a bundle of Teal, 2 Black-tailed Godwits, some Little Stints (I made no effort to count them ), a very photogenic male Little Ringed Plover (above L) and an equally elegant Wood Sandpiper (above R). The Ruff, the male and two females, had migrated to the flash on the left side as one enters leading up to the parking area. Regrettably the Marsh Sandpiper appears to have departed.

1 comentario:

Anónimo dijo...

Sir, you are a twitcher!