WEATHER: Bright sunshine all day, cloudy later. Light easterly breeze, top temp 28C.

I collected  Chris from Ronda railway station at 12:30pm he had travelled down from Madrid for tgis short birding break. We got straight on the case and drove to Montejaque to visit the hidden valley at theb​ack of the village. We made a very brief stop at the Montejaque dam to admire the superb scenery, whilst doing that we logged our first birds of the tour, Griffon Vulture, Crag Martin and some genuine looking Rock Doves.

BLACK REDSTART in the 'hidden valley'

In the hidden valley we had a great couple of hours as we strolled along the main track once we had eaten our picnic lunch. Lots more Griffon Vultures were present and we logged Black Restart, Sardinian Warbler, Blue Rock Thrush, Spotless Starling and Goldfinch all in the first few minutes.

In the open rocky grassland we saw several Black Wheatears and a few species were visiting a drinking trough, we listed Rock Bunting, Great Tit, Black Redstart and Goldfinches at the trough.


More vultures were 'scoped' on the cliff ledges and both House & Crag Martins joined Red-rumped and Barn Swallows as they hawked insects in the valley. On the return journey we found Common Redstart and were surprised to see so many Black Redstarts at least 20 individuals were seen.

Cirl Buntings finally showed as we neared the end of our walk and we had much closer views of Blue Rock Thrush and Black Wheatear. We drove into Montejaque and had a quick coffee stop before driving to Gaucin arriving at 5:30pm.

MONK PARAKEET - it is lovely to see this species free-flying along the coast - hate to see it caged like this

At 7pm Chris joined Dawn and myself as we walked to a local restaurant for a lovely evening meal. My evening wasn't over just yet! At 10pm I drove to Malaga to collect Nigel and his son Nathan, we got home at 1:30am.