Well another 8am breakfast before heading out for another relaxing day in the Spanish Pyrenees. A male Red Crossbill calling from the conifers at the edge of the car park was a bit of a surprise before leaving and heading to the Anso Viewpoint. A calling Western Bonelli’s Warbler was only seen by a couple of us, but a flotilla of Eurasian Griffons overhead was quite a spectacle, and they were joined by a Booted Eagle, Red Kite and European Honey Buzzard in quite an impressive kettle.
|European Honey Buzzard|
This open forest was superb for butterflies with Woodland, Great Banded and Rock Graylings, and a Ripart’s Anomalous Blue.
|Ripart's Anamolous Blue - great name huh..|
We then crossed into the Anso Valley where a brief appearance by a Lammergeier left us a little frustrated before we set off up and over to the Roncal Valley. Great scenery continued as we headed up higher and higher, stopping for coffee and fries at a little restaurant.
|Beautiful scenery high up in the Roncal Valley|
Well I’m pleased to report we got Citril Finch at their usual spot very easily (the same place I last saw them 6 years ago!) , before searching for Alpine Accentor which took a little longer to find. But we eventually had 3 birds, one of which flew in and landed 3 metres away!! Wow!
|Alpine Choughs are common...|
Alpine Choughs were common up here, and distracted us a little from the accentors, with a singing bird on top of a conifer being very obliging as well.
The Citril Finches were on view for ages, whilst a Common Quail was flushed from an alpine meadow and an awesome Lammergeier hunted right in front of us.
|A poor effort at phone-scoping a Citril Finch|
Must admit this is one of my favourite spots with spectacular views, beautiful craggy habitat, nice weather and good birds. We even spotted a Pyrenean Aquilegia on the way down and then drove straight back to the Hecho Valley. More time for chilling, quaffing beer and relaxing. Ahhh this is the life!