Monday, February 3, 2014

A Sunny Day In Lanzarote

There’s still post-holiday catching up to do but I’m also struggling for inspiration to do local birding when the weather seems to be in the same evil mood it was more than two weeks ago. This UK weather takes some getting accustomed to after the warmth of the Canary Islands. 

So for today’s blog post there are pictures of Lanzarote birds and the Lanzarote landscape. "Click the pics" for a tour of the island and a glimpse of its birds.

Staying in the south of the island meant we travelled around those parts the most, handy since the working salt pans, the Salinas de Janubia were close by, as was the pretty little village of El Golfo perched on a rocky but sheltered shore. 

Salinas de Janubio, Lanzarote

Birding the saltpans isn’t easy as there is no way to approach the wary waders before they see you and fly to their various hideaways around the huge expanse of water. With a couple of visits there was little in the way of unexpected sightings with common birds to the fore, as in Black-winged Stilt, Redshank, Greenshank, Kentish Plover, Common Sandpiper, Ringed Plover, Turnstone and Little Stint. I double checked a single plover which turned out to be a Golden Plover, when it’s not unknown for American Golden Plovers to turn up here 100 miles out in the Atlantic Ocean. Not the best shot of a stint - I blame a breezy morning! 

Black-winged Stilt

Little Stint

Black-winged Stilt


There’s a spectacular road to El Golfo, one to enjoy in our Alfa Romeo, the hire car upgrade, somewhat more upmarket than the usual bog standard Corsa or Fiesta. The sharp-eyed will note the Alfa is parked at Famara in the north of the island where the scenery is impressive but where birds are non-existent, the reputed Barbary Falcon remaining hidden to our eyes. 

The road to El Golfo, Lanzarote

Famara, Lanzarote
The trip north wasn’t without success as we saw both Houbara Bustard and Cream-coloured Courser near a village called Soo. 

A walk to the Green Lagoon is a must, as is a coffee-stop where the gulls wait on the shore for the restaurateurs to deposit the remains of their morning’s fish gutting. In January it seems to be 99.9% Yellow-legged Gulls in Lanzarote with just the occasional Herring Gull to be seen. 

The Green Lagoon, Lanzarote

Yellow-legged Gull

Yellow-legged Gull

Coffee Stop at El Golfo, Lanzarote

Explore a bit further along the shore away from the plodding tourists and there might be a Common Sandpiper, Ringed Plover and Little Egrets to see, with if you’re lucky a Spanish Sparrow or two. 

Spanish Sparrow

Little Egret

Common Sandpiper

Spanish Sparrow

That’s all for now and I hope to get out birding soon and post some local news. 

Otherwise I’m engrossed in Ten Thousand Birds, Ornithology since Darwin and will post a review of this wonderful new book very soon.

Linking today to Stewart's World Bird Wednesday.


Stuart Price said...

Looks like a nice trip. I like the Spanish Sparrow pics.

Margaret Adamson said...

Hi Phil that was a great trip you had and you managed to capture a lot of lovely birds. I love the Little Egret shot.

eileeninmd said...

Phil, what a great trip! The birds and scenery is gorgeous! What make the lagoon green? The Black-winged Stilt is gorgeous. The Sparrow is pretty too. Wonderful set! Have a happy week!

Carol L McKenna said...

Wonderful photos of nature's gems ~ birds, especially ~ thanks, Phil ^_^


David Gascoigne said...

Life is tough, huh?

Kay L. Davies said...

It's a fascinating island, isn't it?
Of course, I love your bird photos. The Spanish Sparrow is cute with the white over its eye and the black under its chin! And your hot of the Little Egret is lovely.

Mama Zen said...

Splendid shots!

Karen said...

Loving that Spanish Sparrow, and the lagoon!

mick said...

The holiday sounds great and the birds are beautiful. It must have indeed been a shock to get back to the very cold weather I have been reading about.

Beth @ E. Lizard Breath Speaks said...

oh, i enjoy the black-winged stilt, lovely post. gorgeous coffee place. what a view to enjoy a cup. so nice to meet you through the bird link up "Wild Bird Wednesday" ( :

Rajesh said...

Great shots of birds. Nice variety.

WordsPoeticallyWorth said...

Some nice shots. Glad you enjoyed your break from this cold weather. I'm from England.

Thank you. Love love, Andrew. Bye.

Gunilla Bäck said...

Wonderful birds and beautiful scenery. Looks like you had a lovely vacation.

Janice Adcock said...

Enjoyed your photos and explainations.

Stewart M said...

Great pics - I have lost touch with European Gull taxonomy - is the yellow legs a full species?

Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

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