Friday, June 28, 2019

No bins bird club

A re visit to Montnegre to relocate the very elusive Trumpeter Finch.

 Over time we've spent many hours and for quite a few years searching Montnegre, with lots of visit and re visits to this beautiful little valley, I remember CBBC member Michael Smith years ago photo scoping a very distant individual and then virtually there wasn't any new news at all, just spurious claim's with no evidence to back it up and Michaels photo then became a historical event. Until I took a group of Dutch Birders there about 4 /5 years ago where we did see only one bird. I new then that we might be on to something or maybe we just got a lucky sighting? Who knows.  And so we  ( The no Bins Bird Club ) have Slowly been building up the information of the area, with the sighing of the species that occur  / and  birds that visit the valley, on seasonal basis and also the best areas that can yield the results?

And so yesterday John Edwards Mark Etheridge an myself, finally nailed it, more or less the same area that we've been searching previously. We almost got into double figures at one time with 7 Trumpeter Finch perched up.

My gut feeling is there is credible evidence that there's a small but a very sustainable population of Trumpeter Finch in the valley of Montnegre. but they do take some time and plenty of effort to find??  The area of Montnegre is well under watched and should be Birded much more often, and being only 30 minutes from Alicante there's no good reason not too. I can only guess at what could be over the ridge in the other valleys probably more good birds? ?????  Who knows?

Its good when a plan comes together!

Get out there and make the news

And today Friday 29th I had one on one tour with Tony Bishop for a mornings  birding.  I gave Tony the option of where we could go and what we might see?  But he want to try for the Trumpeter Finches. And so true to form the Trumpeter Finch were there 7 birds on the fence or wires and today another single bird on a wire at the village on Montnegre. To be honest we had Trumpeter finches fly over and keep going to the far side of the valley so there are
definitely many more Trumpeters !! 

So you really have to ask yourself   WHY  would you travel to  3 hours 9 minutes from Alicante  to  Almeria which I've done on two occasion?  to see the Trumpeter Finch when they are only 25 minutes from Alicante  and all the included expenses???
Its really is a No no-Brainer and Bird Montnegre!!!

Not much else about except Black Wheatear, Blue rock Thrush, Rock Bunting.  Not a big bird list but its quality that matters,

 Great to see Tony Bishop again.

I would like to give credit to John Edwards Trevor Ashley and Mark Etheridge who has has made a sustained effort in time to bird Montnegre valley sometimes with little reward
Thank you

Have a great day
Cheers Bryan

I just had to copy on to my blog John Edwards comments as it sum up the effort in finding these birds


On Friday 27th June, with hot sun being forecast, the three of us.  The three Amigos.  Bryan Thomas and Mark Etheridge were searching this rocky and deeply indented landscape for this seemingly elusive Trumpeter Finch.

We knew they were up there as reports had indicated their presence.   This terrain is unrelenting, difficult and observation points are necessary. We had tried many timed before,  but only with very limited success although considerable time and effort had been made. Bryan, of all of us, has been the most persistent and, as we know, hard work can pay off.

Patiently we waited with mugs of tea in our hands well before 7.30 am. Sharp ears picked out sounds and it was not until we moved to another vantage point that we ‘hit-the-jackpot’. We saw flypasts as the birds quickly flew around. And soon we were able to identify them by their flight. They flew onto the ground, perched on fences, on electric wires and seemed unfazed by the car.

We had simply, close-up and clear views. There was great moments as the cameras clicked away.
Mark has posted on Face Book and Bryan has put a great write up on.

And to add to these sightings he returned the following morning and saw them again.

We had previously travelled to Cabo de Gata on two occasions, had only one sighting of a pair and that was it. Montnegre is only 25 minutes away from Alicante Airport and it is an interesting ride to get there and you never know what you will see. I think on another summer morning we will be working this area again. Because working at it is what we do.

Thanks to both photographers for the images.

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