White stork. / PETER JONES

Spring and the recovery of the landscape

Nature will always find a way to amaze us, even through drought-ridden times


After the heavy rains of March, it has been hard to concentrate on just the birds of the region as the flora has responded with a flourish and plant species have raced to dominate their respective areas. It has been amazing to see how quickly plantlife recovered from the drought and in particular the local orchids.

Of course, the springtime flora will play an important role in providing food for insects and pollinators will play their part in seed production. Both the abundance of seeds and insects will be essential as providers for the survival of birds and so this spring's rainfall will hopefully herald a successful breeding season for many. Among my favourite spring arrivals are the European Bee Eater, Golden Oriole, European Roller and many other of our smaller birds such as Subalpine Warbler; they all add to the joy of warmer days.

It is impossible to write of our natural wonders without mentioning the spectacular migration happening this month; the large soaring birds such as White and Black Stork, Booted and Short-toed Eagle along with others such as the Black Kite. If you have time, make your way to the Tarifa area and witness one of the true wonders of nature right on our own doorstep. Whilst you are there, try and get to the area known as La Janda and Barbate Marshes, these will reward the visitor with numerous smaller migrants and breeding wetland birds.