What is so apparent in Mallorca, especially if you are located in the north of the island, is that nowhere is very far to get to. Back in Britain, a twitch to the coast usually takes about an hour and a half to get to from Redhill, often much longer, whereas the S'Albufera reserve was only 30 minutes away from the villa.
In fact, the walk down the footpath into the reserve proper probably took as long as the drive there.
Typically, as with many reserves in Britain, it doesn't officially open until 9am – long after the best time of the day to go birding. We also had the misfortune to bump into a couple of wardens as we ventured down the path to the reserve centre at 8.30am.
They insisted we couldn't enter the reserve for half an hour, even though the gate wasn't locked and the walk to the centre itself is about a mile and would be open by the time we got there. Also a couple of joggers came past from their direction and nothing was said about them!
Anyway, we hung around for a while until they had gone and continued on our walk. The reserve entrance and path runs alongside a canal with plenty of reeds and decent habitat. We missed a Little Bittern that flew down stream, seen by a Swedish birder we had earlier bumped into, but it was still full of activity.
|Roost of Cattle Egret and Little Egret
|There were plenty of Black-winged Stilt on the reserve
|A Purple Swamphen came up close to the hide
|Little Ringed Plover
|Black-winged Stilt with Kentish Plover
At the first hide on the north side of the canal, another Purple Heron flew over, plus more Black-winged Stilt featured, as well as Avocet and Common Tern.
|A Common Tern at the S'Albufera nature reserve