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Mallorca 2019

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Old Wednesday 19th June 2019, 05:30   #701
Mike Montier
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Well done Pep, great birds.
It’s a hard walk but worth it, not just for the birds, the views at the top are magnificent.
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Old Wednesday 19th June 2019, 11:55   #702
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Originally Posted by Josep Manchado View Post
We loved the picture of the spectacled warbler with the Estepa joana (hypericum balearicum) one kind of shrub you can find only in the Balearics islands.
Hi Pep

The endemic Hypericum balearicum also had, until recently, its own endemic moth, Lathronympha balearici Diakonoff, 1972 (Tortricidae). It was recently (2016) cited from Italy.

Martin
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Old Wednesday 19th June 2019, 11:56   #703
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Plain Tiger

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Originally Posted by honeym View Post
Hi Stuart
Where abouts was your Plain Tiger sighting (and date, if possible).
Thanks
Martin
Martin - I saw one Plain Tiger in the Bocquer Valley on 13.6.19 and 2 in S'Albufera on 17.6.19
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Old Wednesday 19th June 2019, 12:02   #704
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Many thanks. I've passed the records on.
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Old Wednesday 19th June 2019, 13:44   #705
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Hi Stuart
Where abouts was your Plain Tiger sighting (and date, if possible).
Thanks
Martin
Hi Martin,

I had one in the garden of the last villa on the left as you head down the track to the Albufereta tower on Monday afternoon (17th June), and as Mike says, we had one below us yesterday (18th) as we stood on the tower at S’Amarador.

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Old Wednesday 19th June 2019, 14:04   #706
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Mortitx came up with the goods as usual today. I arrived just after 8.30 and managed to claim the “official” parking spot. In fact, after I’d passed the workers in the vineyard I didn’t see another soul all visit.

I heard two or three blue rock thrushes, but it took until just past the small reservoir before I managed to see one. Similarly, at least three wrynecks were calling but I managed to see only one. Cirl buntings were more obliging- at least three were along the track before reaching the reserve. Blue tits were in evidence, with a couple of family parties, as well as a few individuals. Crossbills were calling as they flew over, but difficult to see against a clear blue sky.

At the reservoir crag martins were swooping down to drink on the wing. Lots of croaking Iberian Water Frogs we’re along the water’s edge, and emperor and lesser emperor dragonflies were quartering the water. Black tailed skimmers and red-veined darters held territory, and a single scarlet dragonfly put in an appearance too.

Raptors eventually turned up trumps. Eleanora’s falcons (two birds) first appeared at 9.45, black vultures (two) at 10.25 and the stars of the show, three Bonelli’s eagles (two adults and a juv) appeared at the seaward end at 11.20. These birds stuck around for at least 45 minutes - I was able to enjoy them as I ate my lunch by the reservoir.

As I got back to the car at around 1.15, two more black vultures were over the crags across the road and a griffon and another black vulture were in the sky looking back down the valley.

A final treat was a black vulture drifting over the road and over Gotmar as I returned to Puerto Pollenca.

Stew
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Old Thursday 20th June 2019, 12:35   #707
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Thanks for your comments on the butterflies, Martin! These days seems that there are quite a few Plain Tigers in the north of the island. Yesterday 4 were seen in s'Albufera, and I've seen 2 in Albufereta today. Another one was seen in Punta Manresa (Alcudia).

My impression is that this species is more frequent now than just a few years ago. Could it be?

Best wishes
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Old Thursday 20th June 2019, 13:48   #708
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I spent a nice day at S’Albufera today. I arrived at 8am, only to find that opening time is now 9am. I took a chance and went in anyway, and had the privilege of being alone until well after 9am (I did go to the visitor centre to get a permit once they were open).

Highlights included a flock of c15 spotless starlings flying past the Sa Roca new hide (I met a birder who had an early entry permit, and he said that he’d disturbed quite a large flock from trees there at 6.30am, and believed they’d been roosting there). I had a stone curlew, moustached warbler and commuting glossy ibises from the platform on the track to Ses Puntes. I saw several purple herons over the reed beds, and one (possibly two) squaccos over the main canal. The pools at Es Cibollar are dry and consequently pretty deserted. There were lots of showy great reed warblers all over the reserve, and I heard three reed warblers. Sadly I saw and adult and a tiny young red-eared slider. I can understand that people found the small ones endearing, but how irresponsible to release them when they outgrow an aquarium!

There were several lesser emperor and emperor dragonflies around, and from the main bridge there were lots of small red-eyed and blue-tailed damselflies. After a lot of effort I was able to identify three or four goblet-marked damselflies among them (a new insect for me).

Later I drove down to the power station end of the Cami des Polls to check out the dragonflies there. I was astonished to come across an impressive new observation tower along the entrance track, next to a large lagoon. Today it held a loafing group of yellow-legged gulls, but it looks full of potential. In any case, it’s well worth visiting for the wonderful panoramic views in all directions!

I parked next to a dyke which held three scarlet dragonflies. The Cami des Polls itself was very disappointing. The “pool” at the end of the trackside dyke is severely overgrown, and the dyke edges are also overgrown, making viewing the water all but impossible. There were plenty of Norfolk hawkers and black-tailed skimmers but little else. I did see yet another Plain Tiger butterfly here. Bird-wise, three Eleanora’s falcons were hawking overhead and two purple herons were over the reeds.

As I walked back along the entrance track to the car, I was dumbfounded to see a pine marten walk across the track about 50m in front of me! It had prey (possibly a young coot or moorhen) and just slowly looped across. In my very limited experience of pine martens in Scotland I would say that this animal was overall slightly darker, with a less bushy tail. In any case, it was by some way the highlight of my trip so far!

Stew
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Old Thursday 20th June 2019, 15:09   #709
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Maties Rebassa View Post
Thanks for your comments on the butterflies, Martin! These days seems that there are quite a few Plain Tigers in the north of the island. Yesterday 4 were seen in s'Albufera, and I've seen 2 in Albufereta today. Another one was seen in Punta Manresa (Alcudia).
My impression is that this species is more frequent now than just a few years ago. Could it be?
Best wishes
Hi Maties
I would say so, judging by the number of records I've seen here and on various Facebook pages. Xisco (and the UIB) is trying to keep a record of the sightings and it would seem that there must be plenty of foodplant around (despite previous efforts to eradicate one of them - the Gomphocarpus). It will feed on Ipomoea and Xisco has an idea that it may also feed on Calystegia.
Best wishes
Martin
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Old Thursday 20th June 2019, 15:17   #710
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Sadly I saw and adult and a tiny young red-eared slider. I can understand that people found the small ones endearing, but how irresponsible to release them when they outgrow an aquarium.
Stew
Hi Stew
Unfortunately, Red-eared Sliders breed on-site, so they are an ever-present problem. I once found a female that had excavated a deep hole near where all the prunings are burnt. I estimated a couple of dozen eggs. They were later renoved.
You were very lucky with the Pine Marten. In all the years I've been going there I've only ever seen the flattened subspecies.
Martin
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Old Thursday 20th June 2019, 15:39   #711
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Hi Stew
Unfortunately, Red-eared Sliders breed on-site, so they are an ever-present problem. I once found a female that had excavated a deep hole near where all the prunings are burnt. I estimated a couple of dozen eggs. They were later renoved.
You were very lucky with the Pine Marten. In all the years I've been going there I've only ever seen the flattened subspecies.
Martin
Thanks Martin,

Presumably the sliders out-compete the indigenous pond turtles? It is some years since I have seen a pond turtle at S’Albufera.

I do know how lucky I was to see the pine marten - I confess to doing a little dance once it had disappeared!

Stew
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Old Thursday 20th June 2019, 18:32   #712
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Yes and I believe some studies are on-going.
Martin
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Old Thursday 20th June 2019, 19:16   #713
Mike Montier
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I have seen Pine Marten in my local park at Mondragó but I have never seen a Genet. Anyone know a good place/time?
Mike
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Old Thursday 20th June 2019, 21:19   #714
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I have seen Pine Marten in my local park at Mondragó but I have never seen a Genet. Anyone know a good place/time?
Mike
Hi Mike
The only place I've ever seen Genet was on Cabrera, on the football pitch - and in the boat on the way back!
Martin
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Old Thursday 20th June 2019, 22:54   #715
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Hola,
Just to complete the very detailed account by Stew of yesterday (Thursday) at s'Albufera (btw it was good to see you Stew), some 40 common starlings from the new hide at sa Roca, 2 Little bitterns in 2 places at the Gran Canal (one of them just by the entrance) and 5 adults + 4 chicks Marbled ducks at the Salinetes de s'Illot, as well as some Bee-eaters on the wires.

Great sighting of Pine marten Stew, and I think I saw the same Squacco at Gran Canal, and (sadly) the same R-E slider (by the bridge going to Cibollar 2 hide). The last European pond terrapin that I've seen was last year crossing a path after many years of not having seen one.
Saludos
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Old Friday 21st June 2019, 11:08   #716
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3 White storks circling la Gola 13.00
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Old Friday 21st June 2019, 11:13   #717
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3 White storks circling la Gola 13.00
thanks a lot!!
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Old Friday 21st June 2019, 17:46   #718
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Went for a pre-breakfast walk down the Bocquer Valley with the family this morning. A blue rock thrush was singing from the rocks just past the two “guard” stones, a raven was cronking away overhead and half a dozen or so crag martins were at the far end. A booted eagle - I think a juvenile - was calling away in front of the rocks on the right-hand side. I managed to find what seemed to be a family party of three Balearic warblers grotting around in the scrub at the top of the slope down to the bay.

Stew
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Old Saturday 22nd June 2019, 15:49   #719
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Spent a very pleasant morning at Son Real. Lots of turtle doves, giving a constant background of purring was a real treat. Theckla larks (10+) were all along the beach, and woodchats seemed to be everywhere. Added to that, crossbills, tawny pipit, serins, Eleanora’s falcons (2), red-legged partridges and a calling wryneck made for a great walk round. A pheasant called at the beach end of trail 4, 15+ Audouin’s gulls, 12+ shags and c15 Kentish plovers were on the offshore rocks, and three Hermann’s tortoises were around the pool from the hide.

On the way back to Puerto Pollenca I headed down the road at Son Bosc, where there were 8+ bee eaters along the fences and over the fields. At the Depuradora distant views of the ruddy shelduck gave me a new bird for my Mallorca list (sorry about the rubbish photo!). A marbled duck was a bit closer!

I saw my first common darter of the trip today too.

Last night at about 10.15 I was near the roundabout by the Bocquer entrance track and could hear a Scops owl calling in the distance from the direction of Postage Stamp Wood. Has anyone seen one around Puerto Pollenca recently?

Stew
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Old Saturday 22nd June 2019, 16:16   #720
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Nice day Stew, it seems you are the only one posting at the moment so thanks for keeping us updated.
Glad you got the Ruddy shelduck after we failed to see it the other day, I thought it might still be around.
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Old Sunday 23rd June 2019, 13:13   #721
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Nice day Stew, it seems you are the only one posting at the moment so thanks for keeping us updated.
Glad you got the Ruddy shelduck after we failed to see it the other day, I thought it might still be around.
Mike
Thanks Mike. Yes, I was well pleased to see the ruddy shelduck, albeit a bit distant!

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Old Sunday 23rd June 2019, 13:28   #722
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After dropping Mrs B and the youngest in Alcudia for the market, I dropped in to Maristany. A couple of marbled duck were loafing around preening, grey, purple and night herons all showed and there were clearly at least two well-grown broods of great crested grebe. A green sandpiper flew round calling. There were plenty of lesser emperors, black-tailed skimmers and small red-eyed damselflies, and just one scarlet dragonfly.

The Albufereta was very quiet, with a fly-by purple heron the only bird of note. However two crabs (apparently mating) in the stream seem to be Callinectes sapidus, an invasive species, first detected in Mallorca in 2018 at S'Albufera.

Ca’n Cuarassa had two woodchats, kestrels (3) hunting the field, calling stone curlews-and a hoopoe. In the stream near the first of the houses at the far end of the track a viparine snake was hunting fish - eventually it was successful!

Stew
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Old Sunday 23rd June 2019, 14:39   #723
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Callinectes sapidus, an invasive species, first detected in Mallorca in 2018 at S'Albufera. Stew
Hi Stew, this American species was discovered accidentally during research on the Red-eared Slider in both Mallorca (three places in s'Albufera) and Minorca (two places) in 2017.

Martin
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Old Sunday 23rd June 2019, 15:25   #724
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Hi Stew, this American species was discovered accidentally during research on the Red-eared Slider in both Mallorca (three places in s'Albufera) and Minorca (two places) in 2017.

Martin
Hi Martin,

Not good news I guess, presumably they will predate indigenous species and/or damage banks etc?

I also didn’t realise that there are no native Mallorcan snakes - even Viparine was introduced from the mainland.

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Old Sunday 23rd June 2019, 16:01   #725
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That's right. There are supposed to be only two endemic reptiles on the Balearic Islands, the Lilford’s and Ibiza wall lizards, the other 19 are introductions - some dating back to the Neolithic.
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