Birds in Spain
On 10th December 2000 a couple of ornithologists from SEO/Birdlife Madrid headquarters, José Mª Sánchez and Marga Cabrero found an unusual sea-duck off Laje (Laxe) harbour, Coruña (Corunha), Galicia (Galiza). The bird was video-taped.
This sighting was communicated on 12.12 to Eduardo de Juana, Secretary of the Spanish Rarities Committee (CR/SEO) who immediately phoned José Luís Rabuñal Patiño, the almost legendary galician birdwatcher, member of the Committee and resident in Laxe for part of the year. However, a drunk driver crashed the car of José Luís (fortunately without further consequences for him and his wife) while driving to the twitch, so the record remained unchecked until it was released in this web site homepage banner latter the same week, thanks to an E-Mail from Eduardo.
seen it, some lucky observers from Galicia (Luis José Salaverri,
José Miguel Alonso, Pablo Pita, Pablo Gutiérrez, Antonio
Gutiérrez, Albert Burgas, César Vidal, Tito Salvadores &
Cosme Damiám Romai) managed to see the bird from 17.12 (see
December news) and notes, videograbs and photos were taken.
a 800*1074 pixels version of the above sketch-drawing with the César
Vidal description of bird plumage and observation (notes in Spanish) Click
on the image.
accepted, this will be the 2nd record for Spain, and the first to be certainly
included in the 'A' category, as a certain true vagrant. The previous record
was that of an adult male seen in the Tancada lagoon, Ebro Delta, Tarragona
on 21 June 1987 (F.Llimona & A. Martínez-Vilalta in De Juana
al 1989. Observaciones homologadas de aves raras en España.
Informe de 1987. Ardeola, 36(1):111-123. The dates of this
first record suggest a rather odd origin but it would be a very odd escape
too (there are very few in captivity in UK at least, Steve Gantlett in
litt.) and in the UK, the species show a rather long period of presence
being late june at the end of it, july having a couple of records
up to 1985 (Dymond, Fraser & Gantlett, 1989. Rare Birds in Britain
and Ireland). The present 1st winter bird record in a rather more vagrant-suitable
location is certainly more compatible with a northern-origin vagrancy pattern.
But the species is certainly rare South of its wintering grounds (e.g.
5 records involving 6 individuals in the period 1980-1996 in the Netherlands,
van den Berg & Bosman 1999 Rare Birds of the Netherlands). Interestingly,
however, an immature drake was reported from the Azores Islands on 3-4.11.2000
(Birding World, 13: 446)
Ricard Gutiérrez 21.12.2000
Thanks to all the colleagues at Galicia for the comments they sent us and for sending the materials without whose this their page could not exist. If travelling to Galicia, please send details of your sightings to the local Galicia Bird-Report Gracias a todos los compañeros de Galicia por sus comentarios y por enviar el material para efectuar ésta su página. Si vais de viaje por Galicia, enviad vuestra citas por favor al Anuario Ornitológico de Galicia. Gràcies als companys de Galicia pels seus comentaris i per enviar-nos el material per efectuar aquesta la seva plana.Si hi aneu de viatge, envieu si us plau les vostres observacions a l'Anuari Ornitològic de Galicia.
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