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A Report from

Lanzarote: 9-15th December 2007,

Andy Lester

Weather: generally warm and sunny-with a day time maximum of 28oC on the 15th and a daytime low of 20oC on the 13th.  Winds were easterly on the 10th-14th and then turned southerly.

Summary: 45 species were seen. This included most of the specialty birds; including Cream coloured courser (with young), Trumpeter finch, Houbara bustard, Atlantic canary and the unexpected find of an adult Spotted sandpiper on the 11th.

Sunday 9th December, Costa Teguise

Good  numbers of waders including 2 Greenshank, 8 Kentish plover, 4 Whimbrel, Sanderling, Knot, Grey plover and Turnstone. Also Bertholots’ pipit-which were abundant at most localities through the week. Along with 2 Southern grey shrike, hoopoe, Sandwich tern and cattle egret.

Monday 10th December, El Jable

Followed the dirt tracks towards Soo and were rewarded with 6 Houbara bustard (four adults and two juvs), 75 lesser short toed lark, 5 Barbary partridge and 1 sylvia warbler (sp).

Nearby at Tahihche Golf Course we picked up 6 common swift, 3 Pallid swift and more Barbary partridge.

The beach at Costa Teguise produced similar waders to the previous day plus 1 green sandpiper and 3 Common sandpiper.

Tuesday 11th December, Haria to Tabayesco

16 Atlantic canary, 5 African blue tit, 6 Spectacled warbler, 3 Black redstart, 2 European robin, 2 Barbary partridge and 1 Hoopoe

At Los Cocoteros a good wader passage, Highlight was a single juvenile spotted sandpiper- at close range (clearly yellower legs and bill base than common-which were also present; greyer plumage tones and dumpier appearance-presumably because of its shorter tail).  Also 1 Spotted redshank, 1 Greenshank, 1 Whimbrel, 1 Kentish plover, 1 Cattle egret and 3 Southern grey shrike.

Wednesday 12th December, El Golfo

Only new bird of interest on the salt pans were 5 Black-winged stilt.

Thursday 13th December, El Jable (second trip)

Different track towards Soo produced 15 Trumpeter finch, along with further sightings of Houbara bustard, Berthelots pipit etc.

Friday 14th December, Celeta

No fewer than c552 Lesser short toed lark feeding on the dune slacks near the beach front. Just inland from Caletta on dirt track heading towards Soo 5 Cream coloured courser-4 adults and a juvenile. Also 3 Raven, 1 Spectacled warbler and 2 Barn swallow.

Other species of interest during the week included 5 Grey heron, 1 Song thrush, Spanish sparrow (common), Rock dove and 1 Oystercatcher.

The only species not seen, despite extensive searching of all the known sites was Barbary falcon. We presumed this may be due to the time of year. Common kestrel was the only raptor present during the week.

Andy Lester-Dec 08


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