Friday, 26 April 2013


Author: Jesús Solana Ramos. Photography: Joaquin Vázquez. 

Since January 2010 has been observed the presence of wintering Pallid Swift (Apus pallidus) in Alange (Badajoz). In 2011-2012 it was found to remain during the entire winter season of at least eight individuals (read more). In 2012-2013 was done several visits between October 10, 2012 and March 7, 2013. The method was to wait in the square of the church from half an hour before to half hour after sunset. During this past winter has been observed at least two wintering individuals. Apart from these two birds, the latest swift recorded was on November 22, 2012 and the first on February 5, 2013 (5 birds seen by José Guerra and Marc Gálvez). Between these two dates, on five occasions were two swifts always entering the same hole in the front of the church.

A phenomenon in decline? If we consider the specific observations in early January 2010 and 2011 and compared them to the same dates in 2012 and 2013, we see a sharp decline in the number of birds recorded.

Other atypical wintering species. During the monitoring of pallid swifts was detected continued presence of 1-3 House Martin (Delichon urbicum) and one Red-rumped Swallow (Cecropis daurica) in December by M. Galvez and J. Guerra.

Friday, 19 April 2013


In December 2012 was carried on a common crane (Grus grus) census in Extremadura. As result, 95,282 cranes was counted. The coverage was almost complete, except for the region of La Serena and some roosts of Badajoz province. Estimating 6,000 cranes for no census areas, the final figure reached 101,000 cranes. The breakdown by areas is as follows: Zona Centro 63,207 individuals (62%), 22,292 Tagus basin (22%) and Guadiana basin 15,783 cranes (16%). Since a census of this scope is necessarily incomplete, it is possible that 120,000 cranes were present in Extremadura during winter 2012-2013. If we also consider that in February 2013 200,000 cranes have stopped at Gallocanta lagoon (Aragón), the figure of 120,000 cranes in Extremadura makes sense.

Two different methods have been used, on the one hand the traditional counting roosting, when cranes meet in wetlands to spend the night, and day counts at foraging areas. The latter has been used in the Zona Centro (Vegas Altas), one open agricultural region, with good visibility and extensive road network.

The comparison by sectors over the previous census of December 2007 (Prieta and del Moral, 2008) is shown in the table. For the whole of the region is estimated an increase of 20%. The Zona Centro grows very substantially (+65%), being the sole responsibility of the total increase. The Tagus basin remains very stable (+0'1%), offsetting rising sectors (Alagón and Almonte) those that decrease (Navalmoral and Cáceres). By contrast, the rest of the Guadiana basin, excluding La Serena, shows a drop of nearly 6,000 birds (-23%), mainly in the southern sectors of Alange and Azuaga. However, a census is a still image on a certain date and in the case of the crane wintering numbers can vary greatly between weeks in one place. Thus, after the census presented here, some sectors decreased (the Zona Centro declines slightly to 56,000 birds in January and February 2013), others areas were stable (Alagón) and other increased remarkably (Navalmoral rose by more than 4,000 cranes on February), to give some examples.

The evolution of the common crane population in Extremadura, as shown in the graph, remains positive with continued increases from the first data available in the 1980s. For the first time it has been found a figure of over 100,000 birds in the region, a value that duplicates the censuses conducted two decades ago (about 50,000 birds on average in 1989-1993 and 60,000 in 2001). All in accordance with the increase in Western Europe, where the current population is at least 300,000 cranes.

- Román, J. A. y Gómez Calzado, M. 2013. Invernada de la grulla común (Grus grus). Resultados del censo de diciembre de 2012 en Extremadura. Published on 26-03-2013, blog "Grullas Veo".
- Prieta, J. and Del Moral, J. C. 2008. The common crane wintering in Spain. Population in 2007 and census method. SEO / BirdLife. Madrid. [Download

Acknowledgements: This work would not have been possible without the invaluable participation of dozens of people who have dedicated time and effort as volunteers. 

Coordinators: Jose Antonio Roman, Manuel Gómez Calzado and Javier Prieta. Collaborators: Samuel Langlois, Dave Langlois, Manuel Flores, Marcelino Tirado, José María Guerrero, Jorge Pedro Durán, Sergio Méndez, César Clemente, Javier Mahíllo, Goyo Naharro, Agustín Iglesias, Vicente Sánchez, Javier Prieta, Sergio Mayordomo, Iván Hernández, Carlos Fernández Diaz, José Carlos López Fuentes, Marcelino Cardalliaguet, Andrés Maestre, Carlos Luengo, Marta Gómez, Javier Esteban, Martin Kelsey, Jesús Porras, Vicente Risco, Santiago Cáceres, Javier Caballero, José Luis Caballero, Estela Herguido, Antonio Galán, Helios Dalmau, Agustín Martín Ruano, José Antonio Pérez Burón, Daniel Pérez, Luis Venancio, Pedro Schreur, Justo Tarriño, Godfried Schreur, Jacobo Hernández, Jerónimo Milán, Jesús Solana, Francisco Lopo, Elvira del Viejo, Lucas J. Navareño, Carolina Climent, Iván Sánchez, Antonia Cangas, José Antonio Román, José Ángel Sánchez, Luis Salguero, Antonio Núñez, Gustavo Gahete, Francisco Montaño, Miguel Corvillo, Alfonso Pérez del Barco, Esther Gañán, Chema Traverso, Carmen Galán, Yasmina Annichiarico, Natalia Franco, Amparo Sánchez, Agustín Santana, Víctor Manuel Quintana, Manuel Calderón, Teresa Tena, Gerardo Pizarro, Fernando Pizarro, Manuel Gómez Calzado, Antonio Torrijo, Fernando Salas, José Luis Ciudad, Emilio Peña, Marc Gálvez, José Guerra, Fernando Yuste, Juan Pablo Prieto, Manuel Iglesias, Marisa García, Juan Carlos Núñez Crespo, Juan Manuel Rodríguez, Juan Miguel Segador, Gabriel Vidal, Manuel Azabal, Amalia Sánchez, Javier Monforte, José Leonardo Baena, Raúl Calle, Taimar Domínguez, Luis Bernardo Flores, Juan Pablo García, Pablo Hernández, Jorge Jara, Jaime Jiménez, Pablo Jorge Díaz, Alberto León, Mario Martín, Daniel Martín, José Antonio Mateos, David Morón, Antonio Moyano, Abel Murillo, Álvaro Rodríguez, Andrés Rodríguez, Juan Sánchez, Alberto Sánchez, Blas Serrano, Janette Valhondo, Antonio Ávila, Francisco Javier Alba, Juan Gabriel Díaz, Jorge Domínguez Patricio Liberal, Rubén Marcos, Álvaro Martín, David Neila, Valentín Pérez, Carlos Pinos, Juan Carlos Recio Borja Retamal, Ángel Rodríguez, Francis Rodríguez, Cristian Salguero, Juan Marcos Simón, Saúl Torrescusa, Juan Carlos Velarde, Jesús Sánchez, Pedro Muñoz, Jaime Rodríguez, Luis Alberto López, Juan Pablo Resino, Azucena Díaz.

Monday, 15 April 2013


List of the most interesting observations during March 2013. Compiled by Sergio Mayordomo.

- Mute Swan: one ind., embalse de Montijo, Mérida (BA), 19/03 (Fergus Crystal).
- Egyptian Goose: one ind., charca de El Trasquilón, Cáceres, 03/03 (Carlos Fernández). 2 ind., Corral Alto, Zorita (CC), 13/03 (Ángel Luis Sánchez). One pair, 20/03, Cáceres (Anonymous).
- Ruddy Shelduck: one ind, Arrocampo (CC), 15/03 (John Muddeman). A male, El Batán (CC), 30/03 (Eva Palacios y Sergio Mayordomo).
- Common Shelduck: 2 ind., Santa Amalia (BA), 17/03 (Fernando Yuste). One ind., embalse de Los Canchales (BA), 21/03 (José Luis Bautista) and 30/03 (Pablo Herrador). 3 ind., Vivares (BA), 23/03 (Blanca Arenaz y Manuel Rodríguez). A bird, lagunas de La Albuera (BA), 30/03 (Antonio Nuñez, Elvira del Viejo, F. Yuste y Vanessa de Alba).

- Red-crested pochard: 150 ind., embalse de Orellana (BA), 04/03 (Á. L. Sánchez -photo-). 8 ind., embalse de Sierra Brava, Zorita (CC), 12/03 (Martin Kelsey). 4 ind. 3 males and a female, embalse de Los Canchales (BA), 15/03 (P. Barnáldez). On embalse de Alange (BA), a pair, 21/03 (José Guerra) and a bird on 22/03 (Marc Gálvez). On lagunas de La Albuera (BA), 6 ind. on 22/03 (J. Guerra) and 4 on 30/03 (A. Núñez, E. del Viejo, F. Yuste y V. de Alba). A pair, lagunas de Torremejía (BA), 25/03 (Albert Cama, J. Guerra, M. Gálvez y Matxalen Pauli). 4 pairs, laguna del Hondo, Granja de Torrehermosa (BA), 29/03 (G. Gahete).
- Black-necked grebe. One ind., embalse de Orellana (BA), 01/03 (Juan Antonio Barquero). One ind., lagunas de La Albuera (BA), 30/03 (A. Núñez, E. del Viejo, F. Yuste y V. de Alba).
- Bittern: one ind., Arrocampo (CC), 09/03 (E. Palacios y S. Mayordomo), 16/03 (Luis Martínez), 20/03 (J. Prieta) and 28/03 (Miguel Ángel Muñoz y Paco Ramírez).
- Garcilla cangrejera: One ind., embalse de Arrocampo (CC), 09/03 (E. Palacios y S. Mayordomo). One ind., Azud de la Pesquera, Badajoz, 24/03 (Juan Carlos Paniagua).
- Glossy Ibis: On 02/03, 7 ind., Azud de la Pesquera, Badajoz (J. C. Paniagua), and 17 ind., Madrigalejo (CC) (Emilio Peña). On Arrocampo (CC), one bird on 03/03 and 26/03 (E. Palacios, J. Prieta, J. Briz, J. Guerra, M. Gálvez, M. Kelsey, S. Mayordomo y V. Risco). 14 ind., Mérida (BA), 13/03 (J. Guerra). One ind. ringed in Camargue (France) seen at Plasencia (CC) on 15/03 (J. Prieta y S. Mayordomo). 14 ind., Azud de la Pequera, Badajoz, 16/03 (Andrés Vega). 12 ind., río Guadiana, Villagonzalo (BA), 21/03 (M. Gálvez). 4 ind., Madrigalejo (CC), 28/03 (M. Kelsey).

- Flamingo. 24 ind., Santa Amalia (BA), 17/03 (F. Yuste -photo- e Isaac Outón).
- Goshawk: A male, Portilla del Tiétar, Monfragüe (CC), 02/03 (J. Guerra y M. Gálvez). On 09/03, a female, Monfragüe (CC) an other at Toril (CC) (E. Palacios y S. Mayordomo). Between 17/03 and 19/03, several sighting, Tajo Internacional (CC) (Pepe Guisado y Pilar Goñi). A female, Sierra de Cabezo, Las Hurdes (CC), 21/03 (Alberto Pacheco). On Alía (CC), one bird, arroyo Bargel on 24/03, one at Sierra Palomera on 28/03 and two at La Raña on 30/03 (Jaime Cerezo, Jorge Ángel y Noelia Baeza). A female, Alange (BA), 25/03 (J. Guerra y M. Gálvez).
- Osprey: One ind., Arrocampo (CC), 03/03 (J. Briz, J. Guerra, M. Gálvez y V. Risco). Embalse de Alange (BA), two between 06/03 and 26/03 (A. Cama, A. Núñez, Francisco Montaño, J. Solana, Joaquín Vázquez, J. Guerra, M. Gálvez, M. Pauli y Roser Solé). One ind., embalse de Los Canchales (BA), 15/03 (P. Barnáldez). One, embalse del Cubilar, Logrosán (CC), 17/03 (M. Kelsey). One, el embalse de Arroyoconejos, Llerena (BA), 24/03 (A. Núñez y V. de Alba). Two, embalse de Torremenga (CC), 27/04 (Miguel Ángel Justo). One, embalse de Ahigal (CC), 30/03 (J. C. Paniagua).
- Pied Avocet: El Batán (CC), 2 ind. on 21/03, 3 ind. on 27/03 (S. Mayordomo) and one on 28/03 (C. Clemente) and 30/03 (E. Palacios y S. Mayordomo). 2 ind., Palazuelo (BA), 28/03 (M. Kelsey). 2 ind., Santa Amalia (BA), 29/03 (F. Yuste).
- Kentish Plover: Santa Amalia (BA), 24 ind. on 17/03 (F. Yuste) and presence on 28/03 (A. Maestre, A. Núñez, C. Luengo, F. Yuste, F. Montaño, J. Solana y V. de Alba).
- Spotted Redshank. One, Valdehornillos (BA), 01/03 (Sergio Pérez Gil). One, laguna de Galisteo (CC), 10/03 (E. Palacios y S. Mayordomo). 3 ind,. Santa Amalia (BA), 17/03 (F. Yuste). One, Cabeza del Buey (BA), 20/03 (J. Guerra y M. Gálvez). El Batán (CC), one on 27/03 (S. Mayordomo) and 28/03 (C. Clemente).
- Ring-billed Gull. 2ª for Extremadura. One, 2º winter, Santa Amalia (BA), 18/03 (F. Yuste, J. Guerra y M. Gálvez).
- Mew Gull. A 1º winter, embalse de Alange (BA), 01/03 (J. Guerra y M. Gálvez). One ind., río Guadiana, Badajoz (BA), 11/03 (J. C. Paniagua).

- Caspian Tern: one bird, at río Guadiana, Badajoz, 06/03 (Joaquín Mazón) and 07/03 (J. Mazón y J. C. Paniagua -foto-), and the samen at embalse de Alange (BA), 09/03 (J. Guerra y M. Gálvez) and 11/03 (M. Gálvez).
- Speckled Pigeon (Columba guinea). 1º for Extremadura. 2 ind., Coria (CC), 10/03 (Esteban Reyes y Julián Reyes).
- Rose-ringed Parakeet: One ind., Alcazaba de Mérida (BA), 11/03 (J. Solana). One ind., Puerta de Palmas, Badajoz, 12/03 (J. C. Paniagua).
- Monk Parakeet. Paseo Alto, Cáceres, 4 ind., 03/03 and 17/03 (J. Solana), and one, 28/03 (E. Palacios y S. Mayordomo). Parque del Príncipe, Cáceres, 4 ind., 24/03 (J. Solana).
- Wryneck: One ind., Plasencia (CC), 20/03 (Jesús Sánchez), 22/03 (S. Mayordomo) and 30/03 (R. Montero). One ind., Villanueva de la Vera (CC), 30/03 (D. Langlois). On 30/03, one at Malpartida de Plasencia (CC) (Heijo Knecht) and one at Alange (J. Guerra).
- White Wigtail. Subspecies M. a. yarrellii: gravera Valdefuentes, Galisteo (CC), 3 ind. 2 males and a female, 06/03 (S. Mayordomo) and a male, 10/03 (E. Palacios y S. Mayordomo). A male, embalse de Alange (BA), 10/03 (A. Núñez, F. Montaño, J. Solana, J. Guerra, M. Gálvez y V. de Alba). A pair, Montehermoso (CC), 12/03 (C. Clemente y J. Mahillo). A female, Charco Salado, Casatejada (CC), 23/03 (E. Palacios y S. Mayordomo). A female, Plasencia (CC), 27/03 (S. Mayordomo).
- Bearded Reedling: Arrocampo (CC): 2 ind., 03/03 (J. Briz, J. Guerra, M. Gálvez y V. Risco). 2 ind., 15/03 (J. Muddeman). A male, 20/03 (J. Prieta). 2 males, 23/03 (E. Palacios y S. Mayordomo).

- Garganey. A pair, El Batán (CC), 10/03 (E. Palacios y S. Mayordomo). 5 ind., 3 males and 2 females, embalse de Los Canchales (BA), 15/03 (Paco Barnáldez). A pair, Moheda Alta, Navalvillar de Pela (BA), 17/03 (M. Kelsey). A male, embalse de Alange (BA), 21/03 (J. Guerra). 3 ind. 2 males and a female, laguna de Galisteo (CC), 24/03 (J. Prieta). A pair, lagunas de La Albuera (BA), 29/03 (Adolfo García y A. Núñez). 2 ind., laguna Torrealba, Torremocha (CC), 30/03 (J. P. Prieto y William Haworth).
- Purple Heron. One ind., embalse de Arrocampo (CC), 03/03 (Javier Briz, J. Guerra, M. Gálvez y Vicente Risco). An adult, Azud de la Pesquera, Badajoz, 24/03 (J. C. Paniagua). 3 ind., río Guadiana, Villagonzalo (BA), 26/03 (J. Guerra y M. Gálvez).
- Montagu's Harrier. A male, Lobón (BA), 07/03 (Francisco Lopo). One, Ladrillar (CC), 08/03 (A. Pacheco). A male, Sierra de Fuentes (CC), 14/03 (J. Muddeman).
- Collared Pratincole. 12 ind., gravera el Soto, Valverde de Mérida (BA), 26/03 (J. Guerra y M. Gálvez). On 28/03, 7 ind., lagunas de Torremejía (BA) (M. Gálvez), 20 at Campo Lugar (CC) (Antonio Calvo), 10 at Santa Amalia (BA) (A. Maestre, A. Núñez, C. Luengo, F. Yuste, F. Montaño, J. Solana y V. de Alba) and one at Madrigalejo (CC) (Martin Kelsey).
- Wood Sandpiper. One bird, Palazuelo (BA), 28/03 (M. Kelsey).
- Gull-billed Tern. One bird, embalse de Alange (BA), 24/03 (Antonia Cangas y Ángel Sánchez) and 02/04 (J. Guerra y M. Gálvez). One, río Guadiana, Mérida (BA), 03/04 (S. Pérez Gil).
- Cuco común: One, Oliva de Mérida (BA), 01/03 (J. Guerra y M. Gálvez). On 09/03, one at Casatejada (CC) (E. Palacios y S. Mayordomo) and Alange (BA) (J. Guerra y M. Gálvez). One, Montehermoso (CC), 12/03 (J. Mahillo). First female, Serrejón, 26/03 (Manuel García del Rey).
- Common Swift. 8 ind., Zafra (BA), 15/03 (A. Núñez y F. Montaño). Presence, Mérida (BA), 17/03 (S. Pérez Gil). At Badajoz, one on 21/03 (J. Mazón) and several on 27/03 (J. C. Paniagua). On 28/03, 4 ind. at Santa Amalia (BA) (A. Maestre, A. Núñez, C. Luengo, F. Yuste, F. Montaño, J. Solana y V. de Alba) and  50 at Montehermoso (CC) (J. Mahillo).
- Bee-eater: Presence, Cornalvo (BA), 27/03 (E. del Viejo). On 28/03, 9 ind. at Montijo (Godfried Schreur, J. L. Bautista, Justo Tarriño, Nicolás Schreur y Pedro Schreur), 8 at Palazuelo (BA) (M. Kelsey) and one at Monfragüe (CC) (M. García del Rey). 4 ind., Alange (BA), 29/03 (Lorenzo Alcántara).
- Greater Short-toed Lark. Several, Trujillo and Santa Marta de Magasca (CC), 15/03 (P. Guisado y P. Goñi). 2 ind., lagunas de Torremejía (BA), 28/03 (M. Gálvez).
- Yellow Wagtail. 2 ind. M. f. flava, Casas de Hitos, Navalvillar de Pela (BA), 17/03 (M. Kelsey). One, Riolobos (CC), 20/03 (R. Montero). One M. f. iberiae, Plasencia (CC), 22/03 (S. Mayordomo). Other subspecies: on 27/03, Riolobos, a male M. f. flavissima, a male M. f. cinereocapilla and a male "M. f. superciliaris".
- Nightingale. Presence, río Guadiana, Puebla de la Calzada (BA), 20/03 (F. Lopo). On 28/03, one at Pago de San Clemente (CC) (M. Kelsey) and Torrefresneda (BA) (J. Solana). One, Villanueva de la Vera (CC), 29/03 and 6 on 30/03 (D. Langlois)
- Common Redstart. One, Granja de Torrehermosa (BA), 17/03 (Gustavo Gahete).
- Northern Wheatear. A male, Santa Marta de Magasca (CC), 11/03 (M. Kelsey). On 20/03, one at Brozas (CC) (Helios Dalmau, Ian Parsons y Peter Eden) and 2 at Cabeza del Buey (BA) (J. Guerra y M. Gálvez).

- Black-eared Wheatear. A female, Sierra de Fuentes (CC), 09/03 (F. J. Caballero). On 17/03, a male at Trasquilón, Cáceres (J. Solana), and a pair at Granja de Torrehermosa (BA) (G. Gahete). One, Campillo de Llerena (BA), 18/03 (Juan Carlos Salgado). Photo by Antonio Calvo.
- Savi's Warbler. Arrocampo (CC), one on 09/03 (E. Palacios y S. Mayordomo) and 3 on 20/03 (J. Prieta).
- Spectacled Warbler. 2 ind., Monfragüe (CC), 28/03 (J. Porras).
- Subalpine Warbler. A male, Monfragüe (CC), 10/03 (S. Mayordomo). One, Mérida (BA), 12/03 (J. Muddeman). One, Cáceres, 13/03 (J. L. Bautista).
- Common Whitethroat. One, Cáceres, 21/03 (J. L. Bautista). One, Malpartida de Plasencia (CC), 29/03 (E. Palacios y S. Mayordomo).
- Iberian Chiffchaff. Montehermoso (CC), one on 15/03 (J. Mahillo), 20/03 and 22/03 (C. Clemente y J. Mahillo). Villanueva de la Vera (CC), one on 18/03, 21/03 and 25/03, 3 on 28/03 and 5 on 30/03 (D. Langlois). Villagonzalo (BA), one on 21/03 (M. Gálvez) and 26/03 (J. Guerra y M. Gálvez). Plasencia (CC), 2 on 22/03 (S. Mayordomo), one on 24/03 (J. Prieta) and 3 on 27/03 (S. Mayordomo). 2 ind., Azud del Guadiana, Badajoz, 27/03 (J. P. Prieto). One, Salto del Gitano, Monfragüe (CC), 31/03 (E. Palacios y S. Mayordomo).
- Willow Warbler: One, La Codosera (BA), 12/03 (J. Guerra y M. Gálvez). One, embalse de Talaván (CC), 17/03 (E. Palacios y S. Mayordomo). One, Cabeza del Buey (BA), 20/03 (J. Guerra y M. Gálvez). One, Montehermoso (CC), 22/03 (C. Clemente y J. Mahillo). Plasencia (CC), one on 25/03 and 27/03 (S. Mayordomo). One at Galisteo (CC) on 27/03 (S. Mayordomo). One, Torremejía (BA), 28/03 (M. Gálvez).
- Pied Flycatcher. A male, Alía (CC), 31/03 (J. Cerezo, J. Ángel y N. Baeza).
- Woodchat Shrike. One, Cáceres-Trujillo (CC), 07/03 (M. Kelsey). One, Montehermoso (CC), 12/03 (C. Clemente y J. Mahillo). On 14/03, a male at Monfragüe (CC) (M. García del Rey y S. Mayordomo) and Cáceres (J. Muddeman).

- Greylag Goose. Presence, Quintana de La Serena (BA), 11/03 (Agustín Sanabria). On 14/03, 30 over embalse de Talaván (CC) (J. Muddeman) and 76 over Alange (BA)(M. Gálvez). 26 ind., embalse de Arrocampo (CC), 15/03 (J. Muddeman). 2 ind., embalse de Los Canchales (BA), el 30/03 (P. Herrador).
- Merlin: 2 ind., Cabeza del Buey (BA), 20/03 (J. Guerra y M. Gálvez). One, Madrigalejo (CC), 22/03 (M. Kelsey). One, Llerena (BA), 24/03 (A. Cama, M. Pauli, M. Gálvez y J. Guerra).
- Common crane. 15 ind., over Pescueza (CC), 21/03 (Ricardo Sáez). 1º winter, Las Tiesas (BA), 24/03 (A. Núñez y V. de Alba). One, Valdehornillos (BA), 28/03 (Andrés Maestre, A. Núñez, Carlos Luengo, F. Yuste, F. Montaño, J. Solana y V. de Alba).
- Eurasian Curlew. At Galisteo, 18 ind. on 10/03 (E. Palacios y S. Mayordomo) and 13/03 (César Clemente y Javier Mahillo) and 7 on 27/03 (S. Mayordomo).

- Short-eared Owl. One, gravera Valdefuentes, Galisteo (CC), 06/03 (S. Mayordomo). 3 ind., Cabeza del Buey (BA), 20/03 (J. Guerra -photo- y M. Gálvez).
- Alpine Accentor. 9 ind., Alange (BA), 08/03 (F. Montaño). 3 ind., sierra de Cabezo, Las Hurdes (CC), 21/03 (A. Pacheco).
- Fieldfare. One, Malpartida de Cáceres-Aliseda (CC), 01/03 (Á. Sánchez y Javier Caldera). Galisteo, 5 ind on 06/03 (S. Mayordomo), 2 ind. on 10/03 (E. Palacios y S. Mayordomo) and 3 ind. on 13/03 (C. Clemente y J. Mahillo).
- Common Firecrest. One, Salto del Gitano, Monfragüe (CC), 09/03 (E. Palacios y S. Mayordomo).
- Bullfinch. One, Viandar de la Vera (CC), 03/03 (D. Langlois). 3 ind., La Codosera (BA), 12/03 (J. Guerra y M. Gálvez). 2 ind., Pinofranqueado (CC), 20/03 (A. Pacheco). One, Piornal (CC), 21/03 (J. Prieta). Villanueva de la Vera, a male on 23/03 and one bird on 28/03 (D. Langlois).
- Reed Bunting. A female, gravera Valdefuentes, Galisteo (CC), 13/03 (C. Clemente y J. Mahillo). 4 ind., embalse de Talaván (CC), 17/03 (E. Palacios y S. Mayordomo).

Friday, 5 April 2013


The winter 2012-2013 has been excellent for wintering Greylag Goose (Anser anser) in Extremadura. This situation results in the arrival of geese scarce species, as it has been. Perhaps we are in the season with the highest number of geese observed in Extremadura and rare specimens seen for several months. Greylag apart, 26 individuals of six species of geese in eight locations are involved. Although these records have been published in our monthly summaries, it seems appropriate to group them into a single text. [See previous review on rare geese in Extremadura]

Bean Goose (Anser fabalis). Two individuals from two localities. The cumulative total is seven records and 13 birds.

An individual, possibly fabalis subspecies in the embalse de Borbollón (CC) between December 10, 2012 and January 23, 2013. Minimum 45 days. Cited on 10/12, 11/12, 15/12, 22/12, 17/01 and 23/01. Observers:
Goyo Naharro, Fernando Salas, Antonio Torrijo, Sergio Mayordomo, Ricardo Montero, Hugo Sánchez, César Clemente (photo), Javier Prieta, Javier Mahíllo, Eva Palacios, José Guerra y Marc Gálvez.

An individual of first winter in Moheda Alta, Navalvillar Pela (BA), on January 4, and February 2, 2013. Minimum 30 days. Observers: César Clemente, Pepe Guisado, Pilar Goñi, Sergio Mayordomo, Guillermo Mayor, Jaime Tolosa, José Guerra, Julio Merayo, Marc Gálvez y María José Valencia.

Pink-footed Goose (Anser brachyrhynchos). Third in Extremadura, all of an individual. [See post and photographs]

An individual in embalse de Valdecañas (CC) between November 2, 2012 and January 20, 2013. Minimum 80 days. Cited on 02/11, 03/11, 11/11, 16/11, 02/12, 07/12, 23/12, 15/01 and 20/01. Observers:
Vicente Risco, Javier Briz, Sergio Mayordomo, Ricardo Montero, Eva Palacios, Javier Prieta (photo) y Martin Kelsey.


Greater White-fronted Goose (Anser albifrons). Fifteen in four locations. It is the most common rare goose Extremadura, with a cumulative total of 65 individuals.

At least ten individuals in two areas of embalse de Valdecañas (CC): Bohonal de Ibor Bohonal (an adult and a juvenile) and El Gordo-Peraleda de la Mata (eight birds, largest group known in Extremadura). The stay together extends between November 11, 2012 and February 3, 2012. Minimum 85 days. Quotes from three adults on 11/11, a juvenile on 19/11, an adult and a juvenile on 23/11, seven birds on 02/12, eight on 16/12, eight on 23/12, one on 29/12, nine on 15/01, three on 26/01, one on 27/01 and two on 03/02. Observers: Samuel Langlois, Dave Langlois, Javier Prieta (photo), César Clemente, Sergio Mayordomo, Juan Diego Acevedo, Fernando Salas, Antonio Torrijo, Vicente Risco, Javier Briz, José Portillo y Manuel García del Rey.

Two individuals in embalse de El Borbollón (CC) between December 10, 2012 and February 11, 2013. Minimum 64 days. Cited on 10/12, 11/12, 13/12, 15/12, 22/12 and 11/02. Observers: Goyo Naharro, Fernando Salas, Antonio Torrijo, Sergio Mayordomo, Ricardo Montero, Hugo Sánchez, César Clemente, Javier Prieta (photo), Javier Mahillo y Eva Palacios.

A bird at Moheda Alta, Navalvillar Pela (BA), on December 1, 2012 (Manuel García del Rey, Juan R. Suarez and David Cuenca) and January 8, 2013 in Vegas Altas (BA), which could be a distinct individual (Jose Guerra and Marc Gálvez).A goose on January 8, 2013 in Los Canchales (BA) (Francisco Montaño, Joaquín Vázquez and José Delgado).

Bar-headed goose (Anser indicus). A bird. Fifth in Extremadura, always an individual.One in Vega de Zarzalejos, Logrosan (CC), on November 11, 2012 (Sergio Mayordomo and Luis Salguero) and maybe the same in La Trebolosa, Madrigalejo (CC), on December 9, 2012 (Sergio Mayordomo).

Canada Goose (Branta canadensis). Two indivudual in two locations. Cumulative six registers and nine birds.

An individual in Vega de Zarzalejos, Logrosan (CC), the November 4, 2012 (Luis Salguero and Jose Angel Sanchez).

An individual in lagunas de Torremejía (BA) between November 24, 2012 and January 27, 2012. Minimum 65 days. Cited on 24/11, 02/12, 06/12, 08/12, 09/12, 06/01 and 27/01. Observers:
Fergus Crystal, Antonia Cangas, Vanessa de Alba, Francisco Montaño, Antonio Núñez Ossorio, Miguel Ángel Muñoz, Jesús Solana, Eva Palacios, Ángel Sánchez, John Muddeman, Sergio Mayordomo, Antonio Matador, José Gómez Aparicio, José Guerra, Fernando Yuste, Luis Salguero y Marc Gálvez.

Barnacle Goose (Branta leucopsis). Five birds in four locations. Cumulative total of 24 records and 31 individuals.

One in Vega del Haza, Malpartida de Plasencia (CC), between November 19, 2012 and January 11, 2013. Minimum 54 days. Cited on 19/11, 22/11, 25/11, 03/12 and 11/01. Observers:
Javier Prieta, Antolín Redondo, Sergio Mayordomo y Chema Diu.

An individual in the embalse de Valdecañas (CC) between December 2, 2012 and January 15, 2013. Minimum 45 days. Cited on 02/12, 23/12, 25/12, 29/12 and 15/01. Observers: Vicente Risco, Javier Briz, Sergio Mayordomo, Ricardo Montero y Javier Prieta (photo).

A bird in the embalse del Salor (CC) between December 30, 2012 and February 9, 2013. Least 42 days. Cited on 30/12, 01/01 (Charca de La Generala), 15/01 and 09/02. Observers:
Carlos Fernández, Marcelino Cardalliaguet, F. Javier Caballero, César Clemente y Sergio Mayordomo.

Two birds on the Embalse de Portaje (CC) on January 17, 2013 (Sergio Mayordomo).

Monday, 1 April 2013


The 2012-2013 winter has come to an end and it is time to talk about  the wintering birds in Extremadura. There are many who are interested after waterfowl, crane and cormorant censuses. I think its a good idea to start with the wintering greylag goose (Anser anser). The census of January 2013 recorded 23,173 individuals in Extremadura, almost triple that of January 2012 (8,020 birds). The graph shows the official census figures for January in the last 23 years. The interpretation must be made with caution, because of the large difference in census coverage over the years (very low in 2011 or 2009, for example, and several years without information). Still, there is a very clear upward trend, as already stated in a previous post. However, the distribution of the species is restricted to a few locations, the same as contained in the censuses of the early 1990s, over two decades ago.

The most prominent location is again Vegas Altas (#1), which has primarily rice stubble and, to a lesser extent, corn and other crops. Within the wide area available each year, most are concentrated in the eastern part of the county, it being too complicated to count scattered foraging areas and roosts (although in some seasons, as in 2007, there were more than 8,000 geese in Sierra Brava reservoir). On 14 and 15 January 2013, there were estimated 18,800 greylag geese, mostly at Logrosán municipality (15,000), and the rest between Madrigalejo (3000), Navalvillar de Pela (600) and other localities (200). This is the highest known, thanks to the good condition of the flooded rice fields. Quite the opposite during the dry winter before, when in January 2012, just over 4,000 geese were counted. The previous high dating back to January 2006, when there were 13,800 Greylag Geese.

Valdecañas reservoir (#2) also reached a peak in January 2013 (2,950 birds), perhaps helped by the low level of the reservoir and the large area of shoreline available. The geese were divided into two zones of the reservoir, a thousand in Bohonal de Ibor and two thousand in El Gordo-Peraleda de la Mata. Rare geese observations suggest little movement between the two sectors. Also, at the end of January the water level rose and some of the geese moved to the nearby pastures of Lugar Nuevo, Peraleda de la Mata. The highest numbers of greylag at Valdecañas were known to be 2250 birds in January 2012 and 1,875 in January 2005.

The remaining traditional greylag locations for winter populations harbored more modest numbers and in no case exceeded previous highs. So, in the reservoir of El Borbollón (#3) 186  were counted compared to the 458 of 2005. In Gabriel y Galán reservoir (#4) there were only 156 birds, half the maximum of 300 in 2000. Portaje reservoir (#5) had 206 geese in 2013, and the maximum was 293 in 2006. In Salor reservoir (#6), and nearby wetlands, there were only 56 individuals. The geese wintering in Llanos de Cáceres may vary location according to the years, the last two being focused on Valdesalor, when before they were at the ebmalse de Guadiloba, with the most in the region (250 birds in 2006). Los Canchales reservoir (#7) was the third location in importance in 2013, with 377 individuals, still far from the 900 of January 2000. Meanwhile, the Torremejía lagoons (#8) had 206 birds, well below the 1,050 peak of January 1999. This subpopulation occupies both these lagoons as Alange reservoir depending on water levels. Finally, the Llerena-Arroyoconejos reservoir (#7) showed a figure of 120 geese, far below the 1,100 in 2002. Although in other locations there can be geese in winter, they are not regular wintering areas. So in the January 2013 census, there were19 sites, and in January 2012, 21 sites. Other censuses, show more than 80 places with a greylag presence, in some cases it could be semi-domestic geese.

Collaborators. Emilio Peña, Adrián Chaves, Alberto Pacheco, Amado Franco, Andrés Maestre, Ángel Luis Sánchez, Ángel Sánchez, Antonio Calvo, Benigno Cienfuegos, Carlos Fernández, Casimiro Corbacho, César Clemente, Daniel Vicente, Dave Langlois, Diego Recio, Domingo Jiménez, Domingo Rivera, Emiliano Godoy, Emilio Costillo, Eva Palacios, Federico Hernández, Felipe Paniagua, Fernando Yuste, Francisco Bernáldez, Francisco Montaño, Godfried Schreur, Heliodoro Barquero, Inés García, Iván Castro, Iván Sánchez, Jasper Quak, Javier Briz, Javier Caballero, Javier Fernández, Javier Mahíllo, Javier Prieta, Jesús Montero, Jesús Porras, Jesús Solana, Joaquín Fernández, Joaquín Vázquez, John Muddeman, José Antonio Román, José Carlos López, José Fernández, José Luis Bautista, José Luis Caballero, José Manuel Rama, José María Guerrero, José Guerra, Juan Carlos Paniagua, Juan Fernández-Blanco, Juan Fernando Trejo, Juan José Blanco, Juan Pablo Prieto, Juan Rodríguez, Julián Panadero, Lorenzo Alcántara, Luis Lozano, Luis Salguero, Manuel Flores, Manuel García del Rey, Manuel Gómez Calzado, Manuel Rodríguez, Marc Gálvez, Marcelino Cardalliaguet, María José Moreno, Martin Kelsey, Miguel Ángel Romo, Óscar Llama, Paula Rodríguez, Rafael Alberto Rubio, Samuel Langlois, Santiago Cáceres, Sergio Mayordomo, Sergio Pérez y Vicente Risco. Coordinador: Javier Prieta.