Saturday, 6 October 2012

Mallorca photos

Towards the end of our week in Mallorca we visited the famous Boquer Valley. Going either side of midday was never going to be that productive but I did expect a litte more than Blue Rock Thrush (blåtrost), Booted Eagle (dvergørn), Raven (ravn), Crag Martin (klippesvale), Stonechat (svartstrupe), Pied Flycatcher (svarthvit fluesnapper) and Sardinian Warbler (svarthodesanger).
A drive to Sa Calobra on a fantastic mountain road full of switchbacks gave us at least 8 Black Vultures munkegribb) and 2 Griffons Vultures (gåsegribb) aswell as Booted Eagle and Kestrels (tårnfalk). On a future trip to Mallorca it will definitely be worth spending more time exploring the mountains.
The bay in Porto Pollenca offered bathing and birding with Auduoin's Gulls (middelhavsmåke), Black-headed Gulls (hettemåke), Shags (toppskarv) and Sandwich Terns (splitterne) resting on the offshore breakwaters. I waded out in the shallow water to within 20m of the birds to take pictures (hoping to get sea level shots of diving terns but i just missed this) and later swam to within 5 metres of the unaffected birds.

I only took the old 70-300mm lens with me and often found the light to be too harsh for good pictures but here is a selection of the best ones I took and I will have some separate postings of selected species later.

Red-knobbed Coot (knoppsothøne)

The new name is far more fitting than the old name of Crested Coot. After the breeding season they loose the redcurrants on their head and therefore far more resemble Common Coots (sothøne). The three birds I saw all had knobs and I couldn't pick out any without amongst the far more numerous Common Coots.
Purple Swamphen (sultanhøne)
This was a very common bird and not particularly shy.

Booted Eagle (dvergørn)
Alongside Kestrel, Booted Eagle was the commonest raptor we saw and although smaller than a Buzzard (musvåk) it has the feal of an eagle with longs fingers and a stout bill. Light and dark phase birds seemed to be equally common. On the dark phase birds the pale "landing lights" are very obvious on birds flying towards you.

Auduoin's Gulls (middelhavsmåke) in Porto Pollenca bay

Little Egret (silkehegre) at S'Albufera

Black-winged Stilts (sylteløper)
Moustached Warbler (Tamarisksanger)

Griffon Vulture (gåsegribb)

unknown dragonfly

A day flying moth - presumed hawkmoth of some kind


  1. The dragonfly is Red-veined Darter, Sympetrum fonscolombii

  2. Thank you Alfonso.

    I have also managed to identify the moth as Hummingbird Hawkmoth (dagsvermer). I had always assumed they were larger than this although its habit of hovering (like a hummingbird) was a bit of a give away!