Catalonia Jan/Feb 2016
23rd February 2016
As we have family in Barcelona we holiday regularly in the area and have grown extremely fond of this diverse region which contains a number of terrific birding sites. A winter trip is a bit of a misnomer as the temperatures throughout our stay were probably warmer than a normal Skye summer. Over the three week period I managed to record 159 species which included both Swallow and House Martin, as well as a wintering Dusky Warbler, all indicative of the warm weather. The list total was considerably bolstered by a 4 day trip with Steve West of www.birdinginspain.com which found 118 species including Citril Finch, Wallcreeper, Bluethroat, Moustached Warbler, Lammergeir, Black Vulture, both species of Sandgrouse and both species of Bustard. Thanks Steve for all your efforts. Though we were close to Dupont's Lark and heard them singing they failed to show so thats for another visit. Trips to the Ebre Delta, Aguamolls and the local reserve Llogrebat at Barcelona helped swell the list. There are several websites but the most useful for keeping you up to date locally is www.ornitho.cat and this helped me find two stunning Snowfinches well south of their normal winter range, just 45 minutes north of Barcelona. This proved a lifer and one of the highlights of the trip. In contrast, but equally memorable were the 1000+ Cattle Egrets in morning sun at the dump in Lleida. There are a number of images in the Overseas Gallery.