Ross's Gull ~ Vlissingen, Netherlands - 27.01.18

Monday 29 January 2018

What an absolute stunner ...

Ross's Gull 

On Saturday 27th via the Eurotunnel then with a 2hr 30 min drive to Vlissigen in the Netherlands this little beauty played hard to get in the morning before appearing just after midday ...

The light was really not bad at all but the bird at a great distance and no amount of trying would bring it closer so had to settle for massive crops ..

The light failed but on the plus side the bird moved in to the inner harbour and just put on a fantastic afternoons entertainment with fly-bys to nearly touching distance far to close for the 500 and its a shame I did have the 70-200 with me ...

Brilliant day trip ...

Wallcreeper ~ Alquezar, Spain - 28.12.17

Tuesday 2 January 2018

This trip was based on finding Wallcreeper in the Spanish Pyrenees and whilst doing so some good alpine birds along the way.

Flight in to Zaragoza on the 27th December and back on the 31st with the Hotel in Plasencia Del Monte on the A-132 about 25km from Riglos ..

The Sierra de Guara was the target area for the 28th working from the Gosney guide and as time was limited choose to concentrate on the easy access sites rather than the ones which required walks out through gorges etc ..

With so much potentially good rock faces literally everywhere the chances of finding a Wallcreeper anywhere and on any surface seemed a bit of a needle in a haystack .. 

So I tried Vadiello Dam, Calcon Dam, The bridge between Morrano and Bierge then mid-afternoon at Alquezar with all the sites its about luck finding a Wallcreeper ..
The scenery was stunning whilst driving around the Sierra de Guara with at one point 72 Griffon Vultures circling but it wasn't until I got to the medieval town of Alquezar that I struck lucky ..

I decided to leave the camera behind (bad decision) and have a look around the town first, I got to the castle-like Collegiata 
42.1720N, 0.0276E
and started scanning the rock face then OMFGG there it was a Wallcreeper, constantly active coming towards me and wing flicking showing off its colours. I watched it for about five minutes as it was distant but coming closer, now I had to go get the camera which was ten minutes away, when I got back a lady had pointed to where the bird had come to I would of had to step back to get it in the frame !!

But had to settle for big crops ..

I tried a couple of sites in the Hecho Valley the following day without success.
Then another afternoon visit to Alquezar but this time it was a saturday with a few climbers scaling the rock face probably had the birds feeding elsewhere as I didn't see one ..

Medievel town of Alquezar with the Collegiata on the left

Really easy trip and enjoyed the area must do a summer visit ...