On arrival at Malaga Airport on 19 May 2012 our first task was to pick up the hire car, I’d ordered a Citroën C4 or similar… automatic. After a good hour in the queue for the Goldcar desk – don’t get me wrong they were brilliant and quick, in fact so good as a hire company that almost everyone was getting a car from them – we ended up with a Citroën C4 alright… but a Picasso! Once out of the airport we headed north towards Sevilla with a planned stop at Laguna de Fuente de Piedra. A natural, inland saline lake.
John Cantelo from Birding Cadiz Province had supplied me with plenty of good updates and information and armed with an old Where To Find Bird in Southern Spain by Dave Gosney we were soon on site. John had warned that due to a lack of rain the lake was drying out and even recent rains hadn’t helped too much. I had a target here, a big gap on my WP list… Greater Flamingo. In good years 40000 can be seen but this year they hadn’t been totally reliable. I did have a few back up sites but this was the easy choice.
After we pulled in to the car park we headed straight for the Visitor Centre (if you do visit, please check in and support Conservation in the area). I was given the good news… there were 100 or so Flamingo out on the lagoon. The strip of ‘stuff’ in the water is a flock of Greater Flamingo… tick!
We tried getting a bit closer but any chance of good shots were dashed by a combination of distance, heat-haze and reeds.
We decided to check out a smaller marshy area below the visitor centre which was teaming with birds. Here we had a couple more immature Flamingo, Avocet, Black-winged Stilt etc as well as a few Dunlin and this Curlew Sandpiper (a very heavy crop).
Time to go, happy with our start we spent a few minutes admiring the artwork at the centre.