Lesser kestrels, nesting storks, old buildings in Trujillo, Spain

Trujillo main square

Still 11 April 2016. After the bullring of Trujillo in Spain, to the town center. The main square is called Plaza Mayor. Rain. The statue in the photo is of Francisco Pizarro, the best-known person born in Trujillo. His conquest of the Inca empire brought much bloodshed to South America.

Cuesta de la Sangre, Trujillo

While it kept raining, we went to the higher parts of the town. The photo shows the Cuesta de la Sangre; literally, ‘hill of the blood’. The ‘blood’ does not refer to the blood shed by Pizarro, or in the medieval wars in and around Trujillo between Christian and Muslim princes. It refers to the seventeenth century Holy Blood Church here.

Trujillo, on 11 April 2016

As we went still more uphill, the rain stopped for a while.

Trujillo, 11 April 2016

White stork, 11 April 2016

On church towers and roofs were several white stork nests.

White storks, 11 April 2016

The birds looked muddy on this rainy day. They greeted each other with bill-clattering, when a shift on the nest ended. In at least one nest there were at least two baby storks.

Collared dove, Trujillo, 11 April 2016

There were other birds as well, like this collared dove on a roof.

And a goldfinch in a tree. And a serin in another tree.

Lesser kestrel, Trujillo, Plaza Mayor, 11 April 2016

We went back to the Plaza Mayor square. Lesser kestrels flying around.

Lesser kestrels, swallows, bullfighting in Trujillo, Spain

This video is called Lesser Kestrel, Trujillo, Extremadura, Spain, 8 March 2011. It shows a male: with even more blueish-grey on its head than a common kestrel male. Females of both species have brownish heads.

After 10 April 2016, on 11 April, to the lesser kestrel nesting colony in Trujillo.

Trujillo, bullring, 11 April 2016

That nesting colony is in the bullring of Trujillo town. Special roof tiles enable the lesser kestrels to nest.

Trujillo, lesser kestrels sign, 11 April 2016

In front of the bullring is this information sign about the birds, and about the insects and other food which they eat.

There is less bloody bullfighting in Spain nowadays than there used to be. In Catalonia and the Canary Islands, it has been banned.

In Trujillo it is much less frequent now: about once a year. However, that infrequent bullfight would be soon. Male and female maintenance workers went in and out through the gate. That meant we could pass as well through the normally closed gate. A man rode around in the central, low part of the arena, leveling the ground. One could see that bullfighting is not only always dangerous for bulls, but sometimes for humans as well: there was a special infirmary room for injured matadores, picadores and banderilleros.

Mock bull, Trujillo, 11 April 2016

In another room, there was this mock bull for rehearsing toreros.

Barn swallow, 11 April 2016

Barn swallows used the catacombs of the bullring for less bloody activities: they nested there.

Barn swallow nest, 11 April 2016

Trujillo, inside the arena, 11 April 2016

We had unusual access to the center of the arena.

Spotless starlings, 11 April 2016

Spotless starlings, a south European and north African species, on the roof.

Spotless starlings, Trujillo, 11 April 2016

Lesser kestrels flying around, sometimes landing briefly on the bullring.

Lesser kestrel, 11 April 2016

They had not started nesting yet. As this was an unusually cold, rainy day in an unusually cold, rainy spring.

After the bullring, we went to the town center of Trujillo. Stay tuned!

Birds, orchids of Extremadura, Spain, 10 April

Flowers, Jaraicejo, 10 April 2016

This 10 April 2016 photo shows some beautiful flowers near Jaraicejo village in Extremadura in Spain.

After our arrival on 9 April came our first full day in Jaraicejo, on 10 April.

Corn bunting, Jaraicejo, 10 April 2016

Early in the morning, corn buntings sing from wires. Or from holly oak trees.

A collared dove calls.

A woodchat shrike in a holly oak tree.

Griffon vultures circle overhead.

Long-headed poppy flowers.

Two great tits.

Bee-eaters, Jaraicejo, 10 April 2016

Bee-eaters are back from their spring migration.

A black stork flies past. Like the bee-eaters, it is back, all the way from Africa.

Crested lark, 10 April 2016

A crested lark on the footpath.

In the afternoon, we walked a little further, towards the Almonte river.

Sawfly orchid, 10 April 2016

Along a dirt road grew these beautiful orchid flowers: sawfly orchid.

Sawfly orchid, white, 10 April 2016

Their usual colour is pinkish, but some flowers are white.

We saw a flock of about a hundred goldfinches.

Azure-winged magpie, 10 April 2016

When we had arrived back, there was this azure-winged magpie.

Hoopoe, 10 April 2016

And this hoopoe, looking for food in the soil.

Holly oaks, 10 April 2016

And these holly oaks.

Stay tuned, as more blog posts, including photos, from Extremadura will appear on this blog.

Many house martins and a rainbow

This video is called Common house martin (Delichon urbicum) in artificial nest.

Still in Extremadura, Spain, on 9 April 2014, after seeing the woodchat shrike.

As we walked to Jaraicejo village, a male stonechat on a pole.

Close to the village, a pond, where a little grebe swam, dived and called. Iberian green frogs called as well.

At 20:15, many house martins flying in front of a rainbow.

There will be more about Extremadura and its bird life on this blog. But it will have to wait a bit, as many photos need to be sorted out.

Woodchat shrike in Extremadura, Spain

This video is about a singing woodchat shrike.

Shortly after our arrival in Extremadura, Spain, today: a male woodchat shrike. Sitting on a fence, every now and then flying to catch insects.

Woodchat shrike, Extremadura, 9 April 2016

While a corn bunting sang.

Extremadura, Spain, birds, arrival

This video is about birds in Extremadura province in Spain. Including bee-eater, red-rumped swallow, Eurasian crag martin, rock bunting, black stork, eagle owl, vultures, great spotted cuckoo, black-winged and red kite.

This video is the sequel.

On 9 April 2016, we went to Extremadura. Early in the morning at the railway station, it was still dark. Yet, a blackbird and a great tit already sang.

Our plane departed to Madrid airport in Spain.

Just before Madrid, still snow on the mountains.

From the airport, by road to Extremadura, west of Madrid. Magpies along the road.

At a stop, house martins, barn swallows and red-rumped swallows flying. A spotless starling on a tree. House sparrows on the parking lot.

Further west, four inhabited white stork nests along the road.

A black kite flying.

A crested lark walks across the road.

We arrived in Jaraicejo village.

This video is about Finca Las Abubillas in Jaraicejo. Abubilla is Spanish for the bird species hoopoe.

We hear, again, a blackbird singing.

Two azure-winged magpies.

Stay tuned, as there will be more blog posts on birds in Extremadura.