An early start from Manchester meant I had the afternoon to get some initial birding in. I went to the golf course as it seemed a good way to get some species under the belt. So it proved with wildfowl, waders and some of the resident landbirds.
There were so many Coot that when I submitted the count on ebird it questioned it – over 60 in total. In the above photograph they were on a sortie onto the fairway before seeking refuge in the ponds when the players came through.
There were also very good numbers of Hoopoes on the course, perhaps 20 or so. You can see why a species that likes grassy habitats would congregate on a golf course in a fairly barren island.
Birds of the visit appear however to have been the three Bar-tailed Godwit, as it’s a pretty scarce migrant to the Madeiran archipelago. They weren’t close but you can just about see all the key features here if you squint.
To offset that abomination here is a picture of a Hummingbird Hawkmoth by the entrance to the car park which is much easier on the eye.
Tonight we had a walk down the beach. A couple of Spectacled Warblers showed really well in the area between the hotel and the sands. On the beach itself there were several species of wader, including three Kentish Plovers which are apparently barely hanging on here as a breeding bird.
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