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Rare Birds in Spain

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Green-winged Teal Anas carolinensis and presumed hybrids Green-winged x Eurasian Teal Anas carolinensis x crecca in N Spain: I
          
Photos and comments by Ricard Gutiérrez. Drawings by Gorka Gorospe

Introduction

Our friend Jordi Martí, the responsable of bird monitoring of Aiguamolls de l'Empordà Natural Park, Girona, had spent all the winter scanning almost each one of the wintering Common Teals Anas crecca of the park (and they exceeded the  9000 birds!). Always in search of the 1st catalan-ever record of Green-Winged Teal Anas carolinensis. Some birds reach, almost in an annual basis, the coast of Galicia, in the other corner of Spain, so, why should one of these birds not appear in Catalonia, just in the NE of the Iberian peninsula?. His thought had also been followed by other observers along the country, scanning every single crecca available. But always without success. Until the afternoon of 6.3.2002: Jordi, following his almost exact nose for phenology and bird arrivals, had decided to see if Garganeys Anas querquedula had arrived to the Park (they arrived on 7.3!) and what he found exceeded his thoughts and certainly was the reward for those years of 'teal-scanning': the first-ever carolinensis for Catalonia that did not come alone: a bird showing intermediate features crecca-carolinensis was in the same migrant flock. The following two pages deal with these birds and other recent case of a hybrid-looking bird.

The Aiguamolls de l'Empordà male carolinensis 

The bird was found by Jordi Martí on 6.3 afternoon. After his phone-callings a number of other observers were able to see this bird and the hybrid (see recent reports). The bird remained in Cortalet lagoon, near the information center and could be easily seen. It was considered to belong to a migrant teal group and was all the time displaying to a nearby female, more actively than the rest of crecca males of the group. 

The bird looked slightly heavier built than nearby crecca, it had greyer flanks and plain upperparts, the prominent white bar in both sides and the head with almost no white line and a large green area. Besides, breast was richer buff-rosy coloured than in crecca (see photos) showing also less spots than the Eurasian teals.

Photographs

All photos depicting male Green-winged Teal Anas carolinensis and the female with whom it was paired (presumably a crecca, but no confirmation possible). Also other pure males Anas crecca featured.  All photos by Ricard Gutiérrez, El Cortalet lagoon, PN Aiguamolls de l'Empordà, 7.3.2002 using Agfa e-photo 1680 attached to Kowa TSN824 telescope. 

Part II: the presumed hybrids crecca x carolinensis



Thanks to Jordi Martí, the responsable of bird monitoring in PN Aiguamolls de l'Empordà and an entusiastic collaborator with this page. Without his phone-calling neither the observation nor these photos nor claryfing a little more the status of the intermediate birds could have been possible ('cuidadín').... Gracias a Jordi Martí, el responsable del seguimiento de las aves del PN Aiguamolls de l'Empordà y un entusiasta seguidor y colaborador de esta web. Sin su llamada telefónica no hubiese habido ni observación ni fotos ni tampoco hubiesemos aclarado este tema de las aves intermedias tan rápido. Gràcies ('què passssssha') a Jordi Martí, el responsable del seguiment dels ocells del PN Aiguamolls de l'Empordà que com sabeu és un entusiasta seguidor i col·laborador d'aquesta web (queda pendent el tema dinar :-) ). Sense la seva trucada molta gent no hauria bimbat ni hi hauria fotografies ni tampoc s'hagués aclarit el tema dels ocells d'apariència intermèdia (si més no tan ràpid). Gràcies.

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Green-winged Teal Anas carolinensis and presumed hybrids Green-winged x Eurasian Teal Anas carolinensis x crecca in N Spain: I

Summary:

Introduction
The Aiguamolls de l'Empordà male carolinensis
Photographs
Acknowledgements


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