Tuesaday was spent birding on the salt pans around Tavira in the East, before a train and bus journey to Lagos in the west on the Wednesday.
In all 83 species of birds were seen, which, considering the dreadful weather on the Thursday, was most pleasing. Thursday was an early start to Sagres and then a walk to Cabo de Sao Vicente. It was hoped that a sunny day would mean successful raptor watching at the special watchpoint. However, leaden skies and continual heavy showers meant no sensible raptor would be on the wing, so time was spent sea watching. Cory's, sooty, great and balearic shearwaters were seen along with 10,000's of gannets. Other good birds around here were serin, black redstart, caspian tern (1) plus several at Tavira, zitting cisticola, whinchat, stomnechat and wheatear.
From the bus near Vila do Bispo a bonelli's eagle was seen quartering fields whilst back at Lagos a walk up the river gave views of plenty of gulls and waders, plus a kingfisher. The latter being a first for me in Portugal!
At Tavira, spoonbills, a variety of terns (little, whiskered and sandwich) were watched along with a black tern near Fuzeta.
Disappointingly, whilst sea watching the weather was so dark and overcast that photography at range was virtually impossible. The photo below of a distant juvenile gannet showing the poor quality of the light. The last photo, taken on my phone, shows the sky at 11a.m. I was a few minutes away from being soaked!
|yellow legged gull|
|Tavira view from beach track|
|Dark sky between Sargres and Cabo da Sao Vicente. No cover!!|