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Mallorca 2021 (4 Viewers)

Mike Montier

Well-known member
Happy New Year to all readers and contributors to this thread.
Mallorca not only continues to be a fabulous birding destination, but more and more rarities are being found and added to the ever-increasing list of species to be seen here.
We all look forward to better circumstances in 2021 and I hope that finally, many of you will be able to visit Mallorca in the coming year.
All the very best, I’m off to Sa Barrala at first light to hopefully relocate the Bimaculated Lark. What a bombshell.
Good health and happiness to you all,
Mike
 

Mike Montier

Well-known member
I got to Sa Barrala way before first light. It was cold and dark and then it started hailing, just to add to the general ambience.
Not the best way to start the year but I did hear some Common crane, they have been very scarce at this traditional site this year.
Mike
 

Geordie Dave

Well-known member
Mike, Happy New Year to you and Jane and to all the contributors and followers of this Forum. Please keep it going this year. 2020 started out really well and I had visits in January, February and early March before lock down and travel restrictions intervened. I was unable to come out again until July and then again in September and October before the latest round of restrictions brought the birding year for me in Mallorca to an end. Thank you for your highlights report last night, it seems the last couple of months of the year have produced some spectacular sightings and we Brits all wish we could have been there. The birding highlights of the year for me personally were probably the 2 Bonellis Eagles at Mortix, the Alpine swifts at Felanitx, getting to within 2 feet of a Balearic Warbler at Son Real with Kevin and Mike Swiss at Son Real and seeing a Hawfinch and a Crossbill side by side at the drinking pond at Son Real. But above all of that I will remember the many laughter filled days and good company we enjoyed with you, Mike S, Kevin and Phil A. If 2021 can match that I will be a happy man. I'm planning on coming out next in February and cannot wait. Keep the reports coming please. Stay safe
David
 

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hughm

Well-known member
Can I also wish everyone on this forum a happy new year, with big thanks to Mike, Cristina and all the other contributors for keeping those of us in the "frustrated at not getting there" group up-to-date and envious. With my new health issues I doubt I will get to Mallorca this year but you never know. Hugh Matthews- Northampton
 

TonyCath

Member
A Happy New Year to you Mike and everyone who contributes to the forum. Fingers crossed that we can be over in May.
Tony and Cath
 

Ben Nevis

Registered User
Supporter
Scotland
Happy New Year to Mr Montier and others who keep this forum so Interesting.
"Lang May Yer Lums Reek"
I'm not getting overly excited but I hope to be back on the Island this year at some point
 

Mike Montier

Well-known member
Good to hear from you all and I hope you will all be able to visit sometime during the year.
It’s cold, wet and rather miserable at the moment.
No further sign of the Bimaculated Lark, it seems to come and go. I hope others manage to connect. I believe that following the discovery and identification by Jason, only Pep and I managed to see it.
The first Hawfinch of the year has been seen, let’s hope for another invasion, every year is different.
The same goes for Common Starling. One year there seemed to be spectacular numbers, estimated at 2 million. I thought I’d seen an unbeatable figure but I have just watched a video taken by Steve of the most extraordinary number passing overhead and going to roost. Uncountable and certainly more than I have ever seen before.
I believe it was at Magalluf.
Mike
 

Mike Montier

Well-known member
Many congratulations to Pep on winning the Bigyear Mallorca with a grand total. His devotion and energy in covering the Island all year is inspiring. I certainly can’t keep up with him.
Juanjo put on a late spurt by joining me in runner up spot.
It’s all been great fun with lots of humour and the most fantastic birds.
As I look back on the year, I can picture some wonderful memories. Sitting on a rock at Cap de Ses Salines waiting for it to get light, walking the mountains, going down the valleys, ambling around Albufera, standing on the platform at the Depuradora, all brilliant days, many of them spent with some super people, sharing stories and thinking about where to visit next.
Pep has some great stories which could match the antics of Britain’s maddest twitchers. He should write a book. Being alone in some far-flung countries to see a particular species is way beyond my nerves, I just stick to the main reserves when abroad.
Juanjo has found so many amazing birds including some firsts for Mallorca.
I also found a few rarities and scarce birds so there is so much scope here for some exciting finds.
I hope it’s ok to reproduce the results here. Due credit to the Bigyear Mallorca.
I’m just wondering what major rarities may turn up this year. That’s what makes it all so exciting.
Good luck to everyone competing this year.
Mike
 

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Geordie Dave

Well-known member
Well done Mike, I'm glad to have shared so many great days out with you in what has been a strange year and delighted with my 7th place finish. Despite lock down restrictions it seems to have been a good year for birding with a few rarities being seen. Congratulations to Pep, it's a pleasure to spend time with him. He's clearly lost none of his competitive nature as he'll be the first to admit. Hoping to be back in February for a fortnight if travel rules allow. Here's to doing it all again in 2021 !!
 

Mike Montier

Well-known member
It has turned even colder now with snow in the mountains.
I believe the Bimaculated Lark has been seen again but distant.
I’m wanting to do a Seawatch to count the shearwaters but I haven’t had an evening spare. I will get there this week.
Mike.
 

Mike Montier

Well-known member
The Pine bunting is still at Orient along with some Yellowhammers.
A nice sunny day but still cold with snow on the mountains.
Mike
 

Mike Montier

Well-known member
Only 7 Balearic shearwaters from my local lighthouse tonight, following a trawler.
6 Crag martin and a Kestrel going into the cave. I don’t know if this unusual but the Kestrel bred in there last year. I don’t know if there are any other records of coastal breeding.
Mike
 

Mcnswiss2

Well-known member
Blimey, I forgot its a new year and a new forum.
Happy New Year to all. Hope this is a great birding year and we have the opportunity to join you there!
Mike
 

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Mike Montier

Well-known member
No news at all. I don’t think anyone would venture out in this dreadful weather, I don’t remember it ever being so cold.
Maybe the weather has brought in some winter birds like Hawfinch, Redwings and Fieldfares. They are never common but numbers vary every year.
A trip to Son Real beckons and I’m going to walk the mountains around Sóller in the week so let’s hope some interesting birds have been blown this way.
Last year went out with a bang, some fabulous rarities were seen but this year so far has been rather devoid of action.
Mike
 

Mike Montier

Well-known member
A couple of Mediterranean gulls have been seen in the last few days, one at a reliable site in Portixol, near Palma. I went there yesterday but failed to locate it. I didn’t see one all last year so they can be difficult. It’s also a good place for Lesser Black-backed gulls.
Mike
 

Mike Montier

Well-known member
The salt pans at Salobrar de Campos were a bit more lively yesterday with a nice group of Avocet, about 40 Kentish plover, one Ringed plover, three Sanderling, some Flamingoes and a handful of Dunlin.
It’s still very cold but I think warmer weather is on the way. Our walk around Sóller has been cancelled but I hope to go to Son Real instead.
Mike
 

Mike Montier

Well-known member
It seems that the flock of Yellowhammer are still being seen at Orient, maybe even more than previously noted.
The Pine bunting is also still present.
Mike.
 

Mike Montier

Well-known member
With two firsts for Mallorca still showing, ie Pine bunting and Bimaculated Lark, as well as the Yellowhammers, I feel very sad for the regular winter visiting birders, Mike, David, Kevin and others.
With Mallorca now in virtual lockdown, all bars and restaurants closed, and the heavy restrictions in the UK, it doesn’t look like anyone will be able to get here before the end of March at the earliest.
I do hope some of these birds hang on until then.
Mike
 

Mike Montier

Well-known member
In the absence of much birding activity, I thought I would look into the age of the Greater Flamingoes present at Salobrar de Campos.
Rather like reading up about gulls and their moult strategy, I have found another minefield.
It seems that full adult plumage is acquired between 4-6 years and even then, the amount of pink depends on diet and other factors.
Only adults appear to breed. To add to the confusion, after reaching 5 years old, 19 different plumage variations have been observed. Confusing!
I will leave it at that but it does give an added interest to the Flamingoes I see throughout the year at this site.
As far as I know, they have never bred in Mallorca but I have watched several attempts in the last few years. Maybe one year they will succeed.
Here’s hoping.
Photo of a young bird from yesterday.
If anyone knows more it would be interesting to hear.
Mike
 

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