Last month we travelled to Fuerteventura on a 5 days-birding trip. We love birding in the Canary Islands, each of them are unique and have also many endemisms. We have already visited Lanzarote, Gran Canaria and Tenerife, and before heading to the westerly islands, we wanted to visit also Fuerteventura!

Chat Fuerteventura_papagenobirding

Fuerteventura Chat

As you can imagine, our target species was the Fuerteventura Chat (Saxicola dacotiae) but other Macaronesian specialties we have already observed in Lanzarote were also very welcome!

In general, the island is very good for the evasive Houbara Bustard (Chlamydotis undulata fuertaventurae) and Cream-coloured Courser (Cursorius cursor). While scanning for these birds, Lesser Short-toed Larks (ssp polatzeki) were constantly flying around in big flocks interfering with the ubiquitous Berthelot´s Pipit (Anthus berthelotii) song.

berthelots pipit_papagenobirding

Berthelot´s Pipit

Interestingly, we observed in the same area, two breeding pairs of Cream-coloured Courser, one with a newly hatched chick and the others already with a three-weeks old young. It seems that with such a stable climate, resident birds have a very flexible schedule in their annual cycle.

Cream-courser_papagenobirding

Cream-coloured Courser

Along the island, the Barrancos (ravines) are one of the most interesting birding sites. There, pools and small reservoirs attract many migrants and waterfowl, and there is also easy to find the Fuerteventura Chat. We were also fascinated of the large density of Spectacle Warblers (ssp orbitalis) in these areas. The wary Barbary Partridge (Alectoris barbara) was also present, sometimes we could only heard it but often just flying low and landing nearby while walking by.

houbara_papagenobirding

Houbara Bustard

The surroundings of Betancuria were very good to observe Fuerteventura Blue Tit (Cyanistes degener) but also Sardinian warbler (Sylvia melanocephala), and we even had a Yellow-browed Warbler (Phylloscopus inornatus) calling and hopping with Common Chiffchaffs (Phylloscopus collybita). A small Canary Islands Pine forest in the surroundings of Betancuria gave us the Atlantic Canary (Serinus canaria), many Ravens (Corvus corax) and even a Barbary Falcon (ssp pelegrinoides) and a pair of Common Buzzards (ssp insularum).

A continuous passage of Cory´s Shearwater (Calonectris diomedea) along the coast at sunset was great to finish the day ;)

Blue tit_papagenobirding

Fuerteventura Blue Tit

Lesser short-toed lark_papagenobirding

Lesser Short-toed Lark

Checklist Fuerteventura March 2016
House Martin

Sand Martin

Barn Swallow

Plain Swift

Spectacle Warbler

Hoopoe

Black-bellied Sandgrouse

Houbara Bustard

Black-winged Stilt

Little ringed Plover

Sandwich Tern

Northern Wheatear

Berthelot´s Pipit

Spanish Sparrow

Yellow-legged Gull

Greenshank

Ruddy Shelduck

Coot

Trumpeter Finch

Common Raven

Common Kestrel

Common Buzzard

Lesser Short-toed Lark

Southern Grey Shrike

Collared Dove

Laughing Dove

Cory´s Shearwater

Kentish Plover

Little Egret

Whimbrel

Fuerteventura Chat

Corn Bunting

Cream-coloured Courser

Sardinian Warbler

Common Chiffchaff

Yellow-browed Warbler

Fuerteventura Blue Tit

Atlantic Canary

Barbary Falcon

Grey Wagtail

Grey Heron

Turtle Dove

Sanderling

Lesser Black-backed Gull

House Sparrow.

Grey shrike_papagenobirding

Southern Grey Shrike

 


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