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S'Albufera 20th AnniversaryOnce again I spent a week in Mallorca with my wife and daughter, now an annual feature, staying in the Prinshotel La Dorado which overlooks the S’Albufera Natural Park. Convenient because you can see the reserve from the balcony of the hotel, and five minutes walk takes you to the entrance gate. The weather all week was a mixture of sunshine and clouds with a strong north-easterly wind blowing for part of the week. Most of the time was spent in the S’Albufera apart from three trips to Son Real, Bocquer Valley and Lluc. I was joined  each day for a few hours by Comghal McQuillan, a fellow birder from Lurgan, Co. Armagh.

Audouin's Gull
Jack Snipe


 English NameSpeciesAreaNotes
1Cory’s ShearwaterCalonectris diomedeaAlcudia BaySeveral in bay during strong east winds
2Greater Flamingo Phoenicopterus ruberS’AlbuferaOne bird at northern end of the reserve
3Gadwall Anas strepera S’AlbuferaCommon, seen all week
4Mallard Anas platyrchynchosS’AlbuferaCommon, seen all week
5GarganeyAnas querquedulaS’Albufera3/4 birds all week from Cibollar hides
6Marbled DuckMarmaronetta  angustirostrisSes Salinetes4 birds seen during the week
7PochardAythya ferinaS’AlbuferaCommon, seen all week
8Red-crested PochardNetta rufinaS’AlbuferaCommon, seen all week
9Shelduck Tadorna tadorna S’AlbuferaCommon, seen all week
10ShovelerAnas clypeataS’AlbuferaSeen twice in the reserve
11TealAnas crecca S’AlbuferaSeen twice in the reserve
12Red-Legged PartridgeAlectoris rufaSon Real3 birds seemn around finca
13Great Crested Grebe Podiceps cristatusS’AlbuferaA pair were seen on main channel
14Little GrebeTachybaptus ruficollisS’AlbuferaCommon, seen all week
15CormorantPhalacrocorax carbo sinensisAlcudia Bay3 birds seen in Alcudia Bay
16Shag Phalacrocorax aristotelis desmarestiiAlcudia Bay2 birds seen offshore
17Little BitternIxobrychus miutusS’AlbuferaSeen 3 times during the week.
18Cattle EgretBubulcus ibisS’AlbuferaCommon, seen all week
19Great White Egret Ardea albaS’AlbuferaSeveral seen during the week in the park.
20Little EgretEgretta garzettaS’AlbuferaCommon, seen all week
21Grey HeronArdea cinereaS’AlbuferaCommon, seen all week
22Night Heron Nycticorax nycticoraxS’AlbuferaCommon, seen all week
23Purple HeronArdea purpureaS’AlbuferaCommon, seen all week
24Squacco HeronArdeola ralloidesS’AlbuferaOne bird seen, possibly early for this bird
25Glossy IbisPlegadis falcinellusS’AlbuferaOne seen on the 21st, only sighting.
26Eurasian SpoonbillPlatalea leucorodiaS’AlbuferaOne seen flying over reserve
27OspreyPandion haliaetusS’AlbuferaBirds seen all week at the reserve
28Booted EagleAquila pennataBocquer Valley2 birds seen at the Finca
29Spanish Imperial EagleAquila adalberti S’AlbuferaAdult seen on the 22/4 was a surprise
30Marsh HarrierCircus aeruginosusS’AlbuferaWidespread in S’Albufera, seen daily
31Black KiteMilvus migransPalmaOne on the road near airport
32Red KiteMilvus milvusS’AlbuferaSeveral seen during the week
33Egyptian VultureAegypius monachusS’Albufera5 over the S’Abufera on the 22/4
34Griffon VultureGyps fulvousLluc1 bird seen overhead at Lluc
35Eleanora’s FalconFalco eleanoraeBocquer ValleyPair seen on the 19 /4
36Peregrine FalconFalco peregrinusS’AlbuferaBird seen hunting over reseve on 19/4 
37Common KestrelFalco tinnunculusS’AlbuferaSeveral birds seen in and around Park
38Eurasian CootFulica atraS’AlbuferaSeen daily in S’Albufera
39Red-knobbed CootFulica cristataS’AlbuferaSeen daily in S’Albufera
40Purple GallinulePorphyrio porphyrioS’AlbuferaSeen daily in S’Albufera
41Common MoorhenGallinula chloropusS’AlbuferaSeen daily in S’Albufera
42Collared PratincoleGlareola pratincolaS’Albufera6 birds present overall in reserve
43AvocetRecirvorostra avosettaS’AlbuferaSeen daily in S’Albufera
44Black-winged StiltHimantopus himantopusS’AlbuferaWidespread in S’Albufera, seen daily
45Stone CurlewBurhinus oedienenmusSon BoscSaw only one bird the entire week
46Kentish PloverCharadrius alexandrinusS’AlbuferaWidespread in S’Albufera, seen daily
47Little Ringed PloverCharadrius dubiusS’AlbuferaWidespread in S’Albufera, seen daily
48GreenshankTringa nebulariaS’AlbuferaTwo birds present all week
49Spotted RedshankTringa erthyropusS’Albufera20 + birds present all week
50RuffPhilomachus pugnaxS’AlbuferaOne bird seen in Park on the 19/4
51Common SandpiperActitis hypoleucosS’AlbuferaSeen daily in S’Albufera
52Curlew SandpiperCalidris ferrugineaSillotOne bird seen on the 19/4
53Green SandpiperTringa ochropusDepuradoraBirds seen on three visits
54Wood SandpiperTringa glareolaS’AlbuferaBirds seen daily in reserve
55Little StintCalidris minutaS’AlbuferaSeveral birds seen daily on reserve
56Temminck’s StintCalidris temminickiiS’AlbuferaA surprise finding , on the 18/4.
57Jack SnipeLymnpcryptes minimusS’AlbuferaFantastic views from Cibollar I hide
58Audouin’s GullLarus audouiniiS’AlbuferaWidespread in S’Albufera, seen daily
59Black-headed GullLarus ridibundusS’AlbuferaWidespread in S’Albufera, seen daily
60Yellow-legged GullLarus michahellisS’AlbuferaWidespread in S’Albufera, seen daily
61Common TernSterna  hirundoS’AlbuferaSeen daily in S’Albufera
62Sandwich TernSterna  sandvicensisAlcudia Bay3 birds seen in the bay
63Whiskered Tern Childonius hybridusS’Albufera4 birds seen in the bay
64Collared DoveStreptopelia decaoctoSon BoscSeveral seen during the week
65Rock DoveColumba liviaBocquer ValleySeveral seen on ridge above valley
66Wood PigeonColumba palumbusS’AlbuferaWidespread
67Common SwiftApus apusS’AlbuferaLarge numbers passing through
68Pallid SwiftApus pallidusS’AlbuferaOne bird seen over reserve 
69Eurasian HoopoeUpupa epopsSon Bosc6 birds seen over the week
70European Bee-eaterMerops apiasterSon Bosc 15+ were seen on the 23/4
71FirecrestRegulus ignicapillaLlucCommon around the carpark area
72Crested LarkGalerida cristataSon RealOne bird was seen on the pathway
73Barn SwallowHirundo rustica S’AlbuferaWidespread
74House MartinDelichon urbicumS’AlbuferaWidespread
75Crag MartinHirundo rupestrisBocquer ValleySeveral birds seen around finca
76Sand MartinRiparia ripariaS’AlbuferaWidespread
77Common KingfisherAlcedo atthisS’AlbuferaOnly one seen on the 23/4
78Tawny PipitAnthus petrosusSon RealOne bird seen on a trackway
79Water PipitAnthus spinolettaS’AlbuferaOne bird 18/4 at Cibollar I hide.
80WrenTroglodytes troglodytesLlucBird seen at carpark
81Yellow WagtailMotacilla flavia iberiaeS’AlbuferaCommon in S’Albufera Park
82Common RedstartPhoenicurus phoenicurusBocquer ValleyOne male seen on 23/4
83European StonechatSaxicola torquata rubicolaS’AlbuferaCommon in S’Albufera Park
84Northern WheatearOenanthe oenantheS’AlbuferaOne male seen on 22/4
85Zitting CisticolaCisticola juncidisS’AlbuferaCommon in S’Albufera Park
86Blackcap Sylvia atricapilla S’AlbuferaSeveral in the bushy area of the park
87NightingaleLuscinia megarhynchosS’AlbuferaWidespread but difficult to see
88Blackbird Turdus merulaS’AlbuferaWidespread in reserve.
89Song ThrushTurdus philomelosLlucBirds seen around carpark
90Balearic WarblerSylvia balearicSon RealSeen briefly along the track
91Cetti’s WarblerCettia cettiS’AlbuferaWidespread in reserve
92Garden WarblerSylvia borinBocquer ValleyBird at finca in the early morning sun
93Moustached Warbler Acro.  melanopogonS’AlbuferaDifficult, only one seen all week
94Reed WarblerAcrocephalus scirpaceusS’AlbuferaSurprisingly just  one seen during trip
95Great Reed WarblerAcrocephalus arundinaceusS’AlbuferaSeveral males singing
96Sardinian WarblerSylvia melanocephalaS’AlbuferaWidespread in reserve
97Willow WarblerPhylloscopus trochilusS’AlbuferaSeveral seen over the week
98Pied Flycatcher Ficedula hypoleuca S’AlbuferaCommon in area, migrating through
99Spotted FlycatcherMuscicapa striata iberiaeSon BoscLess numerous than Pied
100Great TitParus majorS’AlbuferaWidespread in reserve
101Blue TitParus caeruleusLlucOne bird seen at carpark
102Golden OrioleOriolus oriolusS’AlbuferaOne bird seen on 19/4
103Woodchat ShrikeLanius senator Son BoscCommon in and around S’Albufera
104RavenCorvus corax     Bocquer Valley2 birds seen at the ridge
105House SparrowPasser domesticusS’AlbuferaCommon in and around S’Albufera
106GoldfinchCarduelis carduelisS’AlbuferaCommon in and around S’Albufera
107GreenfinchCarduelis chlorisS’AlbuferaCommon in and around S’Albufera
108SerinSerinus serinusS’AlbuferaCommon in and around S’Albufera
109Common LinnetCarduelis cannabinaSon BoscCommon in and around S’Albufera
110ChaffinchFringilla coelebsLlucCommon in and around Lluc
111Corn BuntingEmberiza calandraSon BoscCommon in and around S’Albufera
112Cirl BuntingEmberiza ciriusBocquer ValleySeveral males seen along the valley
113Reed BuntingEmberiza schoeniclus witherbiiS’AlbuferaTwo males seen , a ssp apparently.


SPANISH IMPERIAL EAGLE:  22/4 I noticed a large aquila eagle flying with 5 Cinerous Vultures and at first thought it was a Golden Eagle but on closer inspection it turned out to be an adult Spanish Imperial Eagle.

COLLARED PRATINCOLE: Six birds in all seen over the week in S’Albufera reserve

TEMMINCK’S STINT:  First seen on the 18/4 at the Cibollar I hide and remained all week. Another bird that was a welcome addition to the trip.

WHISKERED TERN:  A large flock was seen  flying over the reserve on 18/4 with up to 50+ birds in the flock.

Spanish Imperial Eagle
Collared Pratincole
Temminck's Stint
Whiskered Tern

  JACK SNIPE: Unexpected find on the 18/4 at the Cibollar I hide. Bird flew in and landed in front of hide, a welcome visitor for the birders in the hide.

GARDEN WARBLER:  23/4 : BOCQUER VALLEY: Bird was found at the Finca sunning itself in the early morning light.

PIED FLYCATCHER:  A lot of birds passing on migration, majority that we saw were females.

Jack Snipe
Garden Warbler
Pied Flycatcher

 CIRL BUNTING: Several birds seen around the finca in the Bocquer Valley.

OSPREY:  12 birds in all were seen over the reserve, 5 birds were hunting the park on the 19/4.

Cirl Bunting


All in all Comghal and I had a fantastic weeks birding, with several highlights which included Spanish Imperial Eagle, Temminck’s Stint and brilliant views of Jack Snipe. As said so many times, Mallorca is a brilliant place to go birding, easy to get to with so many daily flights and lots of great birding sites. Spring and Autumn migration obviously being the best times. Ed. O’ Hara