Booted eagle, great spotted cuckoo, whinchat in Spain


Hoopoe, 21 April 2016

After 20 April 2016 came 21 April 2016. Probably the highlight of our stay in beautiful Extremadura in Spain. The day we saw this hoopoe.

Before that, at a filling station, a black kite, a house martin and a great egret flying.

We went to the Belén steppes (east of Trujillo).

Two lakelets. In the first lakelet, two black-winged stilts. In the second lakelet behind it, a cattle egret. And a female northern wheatear on the bank.

A barn swallow.

A crested lark on a fence. Spotless starlings.

Then, the hoopoe I mentioned. On the same pile of rocks, a little owl as well.

Corn bunting, 21 April 2016

A corn bunting on a fence.

Corn bunting on rock, 21 April 2016

And a corn bunting on a rock.

Then, a booted eagle flying. It tries to catch a hoopoe; in vain.

Booted eagle with hoopoe, 21 April 2016

However, a second booted eagle does catch a second hoopoe.

Crested lark, 21 April 2016

Then, a crested lark on a fence along the road.

Great spotted cuckoo, 21 April 2016

Another bird on the fence on the other side of the road. A really special bird: a great spotted cuckoo. This species is only rarely seen, so we are lucky. They are bigger than common cuckoos. Like their relatives, great spotted cuckoos are nest parasites. But contrary to their relatives, young great spotted cuckoos don’t chuck out the eggs of their hosts. According to recent research, having a young great spotted cuckoo in one’s nest may even benefit carrion crows. On the Belén plain are no carrion crows. Great spotted cuckoo females here lay their eggs in eg, the nests of common magpies.

Whinchat, 21 April 2016

When we look to the fence on the other side again, a male whinchat sits there.

A short-toed snake eagle flying.

A red kite.

Spanish sparrows on a fence.

On a tree, scores of bee-eaters; and jackdaws as well.

A white stork on a meadow.

A calandra lark on a dirt road.

On the next meadow, three griffon vultures and two cinereous vultures.

Flowers, 21 April 2016

And let us also not forget the many spring flowers of the Belén steppe.

Stay tuned, for more Extremadura birds!

9 thoughts on “Booted eagle, great spotted cuckoo, whinchat in Spain

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