Birding day trip Ouveillan-Capestang March 2024

The Great spotted cuckoos are back!

On our recent birding day trip around Ouveillan and Capestang we were very happy to find Great spotted cuckoo. The GSC is a species in serious decline, so it is always a relief to find them at the beginning of a new season! A few early birders managed to get good views, with their noisy antics drawing our attention as soon as we arrived! Sadly, they did not stay around long enough for the rest of the day’s participants to see them.

We did however all get decent views of a lovely male Little bustard in his breeding finery. We then managed to add Stone curlew in flight and later on the ground. As we looped back to the lovely ruins of the Fontcalvy grain store, we were thrilled to get good views of Little owl. At the end of the morning, Steve managed to pick up the Iberian grey shrike – another species in decline. But the heat haze made it very difficult to see. A discussion about the identification of a male harrier was resolved when it was seen for a second time and confirmed as a Hen harrier (and not a Montagu’s as initially thought).

After a picnic in the shade, we moved on to the Capestang marshes. But after two years of drought there was very little water. A Penduline tit was one of few reed bed birds we managed to see. Migrating birds added interest the afternoon by providing good views of both Black and White stork, plus Black kite, Red kite and Short-toed eagle. Also several large groups of Glossy ibis (with 30-60 in each group we must have seen well over 200 coming into land in the marshes).

You can read or download the trip report here.

February Day trip around Ouveillan

BLDT02-21 Friday 19th Feb 2021 – Day trip birding around Ouveillan

Guide of the day: Karline Martorell accompanied by Philippa Benson
Participants: 6
Weather conditions: Very cloudy but no wind, temps ranging from 11°C to 15°C +
Highlights of the day: Stone curlew, Little bustard and Iberian grey shrike

As a great start to the day, we enjoyed watching a skydancing male Hen harrier on arrival,  excellent views of Stone curlew out in the open (followed by the wonderful sight of 50 or so in flight!) and superb light for a group of 13 Little bustard circling over our heads before landing in a nearby field. Capestang marshes added a good group of Greater flamingo and a fly-over of about 50 White stork. We rounded the day off with a tantalising glimpse of a male Moustached warbler! Not a bad day at all 🙂

Click on the link below to read or download the full trip report and bird list.

Trip report and bird list 2021.02.19 Ouveillan

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