Last Monday, I had the pleasure of providing our most popular birding trip to l´Albufera de Valencia, for two clients from Holland. Anne and Hans are keen on nature and birding but they also were interested to know how the area was formed, the history and traditional aspects including how rice paddies are managed and how the annual rice cycle operates.
After I collected them at the apartment where they were staying at in Valencia City, we went directly to the interpretation centre of the Natural Park where I could explain in detail about the origin and transformation of the region.
Then we had a walk into the forest to an observatory where one of the most important colonies of Sandwich Terns and Common Terns are nesting. That amazing nesting spot is shared also with Slender-billed Gulls, Black-headed Gulls, Mediterranean Gulls, Avocets and Black-winged Stilts.
Next stop was in a beach reserve area where we had pic-nic lunch watching the nesting colonies of Collared Pratincole and Kentish Plovers.
On our way to do the rice fields, we made a short stop in another area to see Audouin´s Gulls and Little Terns.
After we arrived at the rice paddies, we could see how the seeding is done nowadays, and we enjoyed seeing different species of herons and egrets. Then we made a short boat ride, Anne and Hans were amazed by how close the City of Valencia is to the lake.
To end the trip we drove by the marshes up to some fields where the rice was already at a fairly advance stage, enabling us to see it in more detail.
It had been a fantastic day with so much to talk about and to admire in this special place right beside Valencia City.
List of species:
Kestrel, Mallard, Shelduck, Common Pochard, Red-crested Pochard, Audouin´s Gull, Black-headed Gull, Mediterranean Gull, Slender-billed Gull, Little Tern, Common Tern, Sandwich Tern, Glossy Ibis, Moorhen, Little Bittern, Grey Heron, Purple Heron, Little Egret, Cattle Egret, Squacco Heron, Avocet, Black-winged Stilt, Curlew Sandpiper, Common Sandpiper, Dunlin, Sanderling, Collared Pratincole, Kentish Plover, Magpie, House Martin, Swallow, Serin, Sardinian Warbler.
Written by Yanina Maggiotto