For me, the real stars of the Emporada wetlands were the unusually cooperative Cetti's Warblers and Nightingales.
Over the years, I have spent many, many hours patiently waiting beside bushes where one of these 2 common, but extremely secretive, species were singing, waiting for them to show themselves. Only very rarely do they pop out into the open and when they do it is usually only for a second or two so you more or less have to be a mind reader to anticipate when and where they are going to appear.
At Emporada their behaviour is very different and they can both regularly be seen out in the open foraging along the side of the busy main path, especially in the late evening when the disturbance from foot traffic has dropped. It still wasn't all that easy to get good photos of them as they didn't very often allow me to get close enough but, with a bit of patience and positioning myself in the right spot and waiting for them to come to me, I ended up with several nice shots.
Detecting the presence of Nightingales in Spain is not difficult as they are extremely common and in many places it sometimes seems that they can be heard singing from practically every bush in the area. Catching a glimpse of this skulking little thrush, however, is not easy. Seeing one bouncing around on the path in front of you, behaving like a Robin, is like having Christmas and my birthday wrapped into one!
A large number of Pied Flycatchers were passing through at the beginning of the week, but had all departed a few days later.
I was a bit surprised when I spotted this White-winged Tern quartering over one of the lagoons one afternoon towards the end of my stay. Spain is outside of their normal range and they are quite rare migrants there.
A Bee-eater colony, only a few hundred metres from the main visitor's centre, was unfortunately just a little bit too distant from the path to be able to get decent, frame-filling photos.
After a night of heavy rain, several beautifully camouflaged treefrogs were resting in a patch of iris leaves next to one of the boardwalks.
A Slow Worm was found basking on the path early one morning. Slow Worms are often mistaken for snakes, but are in fact completely harmless legless lizards.
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