Birding Ecosse is based in the Highlands of Scotland but has established creds for birding in Spain. What you need to do right now is email firstname.lastname@example.org
and get yourself on the list for the next birding adventure in southern Spain.
Have just returned to US from an extraordinary week of non-stop birding, immersion into remote Andalusia countryside and lots of laughs with exceptional birders who do not take themselves too seriously. Last summer in the Highlands I learned that when you sign on with BE/David Slater you not only get his extraordinary expertise but that of the other birders in your small group as well. David attracts skilled birders. A mediocre birder on a good day, I felt like I was in an advanced avian seminar in Spain. Tony and Lynda and Richard, all from the UK, have birding skills and patience and experience that added immensely to the whole experience. Luis, Malaga native, lifelong birder and guide, repeatedly put us in the right place at the right time. He and David have teamed up previously and demonstrated a partnership that worked well on many levels. Scenic drives, exceptional birds and continuous good humor were punctuated with stops in obscure villages for morning coffee and traditional lunches in non-tourist restaurants.
Over four days of birding from Tarifa to Osuna to the mountains near Malaga, 131 species were seen. With the exception of Luis, all of us added to life lists.
Memorable moments include;
-Dozens of raptors migrating from Africa over the Mediterranean at the nearest point, about ten miles. Bonelli's eagle, black kite, griffon vulture, short-toed eagle and more.
-Hundreds of Greater Flamingos feeding and breeding in the lakes and ponds at Fuente de Piedra. Among the stunning pink birds, black and whiskered terns, three varieties of grebes, avocets and stilts.
-On a little used dirt road, in olive groves, European bee-eaters, European rollers and my favorites, the Hoopoes. Same day, the azure winged magpie.
-Montagu's harrier over expansive open fields of grain, great and little Bustards in same area.
-While lunching at Safo Beach bar near hotel, Tony spotted a flock of 60+ flamingos flying low along the shoreline. Even the bar regulars took notice with us.
-David will never forgive me if I don't mention the White-headed duck. Oh, and the endangered Bald Ibis that looks like something out of a sci-fi movie.
There's more. So much more. You should see it for yourself.
Base of operations was the Melia Sol Hotel in Guadalmar, a suburb of Malaga. Right on the beach, with pool and all the amenities. Walking distance to spectacular birding at the mouth of the Guadalhorce river.
Do you travel for birding? Put this one on your list.
David Slater is a Scot to his core but he seems to have succeeded in giving his birdy persona a Spanish accent.
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