Blue Tit, of the distinctive endemic sub-species Parus caeruleus teneriffae
We’ve just had a weeks family holiday on Tenerife with two of our kids, their partners and two of our grandsons – consequently, opportunities for birding have been limited. In fact most of the birds seen have been from or around our villa at Callao Salvaje. We did manage a trip up to El Teide, including calling in at the play park/picnic site at Las Lajas and a quick excursion to the pools Erjos.
In the brancos, by the side of the villa there was a small irrigation dam, surprisingly with some water still left in it. This proved to be a good area for the regular species like Canary Island Chiffchaff, Blackcap, Blackbird, Spectacled Warbler, Canary, Blue Tit, Berthelot’s Pipit and Common Kestrel but it also attracted Grey Heron, Night Heron – up to four, Little Egret and Grey Wagtail. On the surrounding hillside we saw Peregrine, Southern Grey Shrike and Barbary Partridge. From the pool we had views of the sea and La Gomera. Yellow-legged Gull were the only regular day-time species but we did see Cory’s Shearwater flying over-head at night, an Osprey one evening and Plain Swift, which were a nightly occurrence, with up to 150 seen. We even had a whale species ‘spouting’ off-shore. On our two excursions we managed to add Blue Chaffinch, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Buzzard, Raven, Robin, Mallard, Coot, Moorhen and at the nearby golf course a couple of Greenshank and a Common Sandpiper.
A selection of birds from the local brancos, female Sardinian Warbler
Canary Island Chiffchaff, easy to locate, less so to photograph
Spectacled Warbler, female
Southern Grey Shrike, of the race koenigi
Peregrine Falcon, madens
Black-crowned Night Heron – up to four came into roost each evening
On the nearby golf course reservoir, two Greenshank and a Common Sandpiper
At Erjos pools there were plenty of birds but nothing out of the ordinary. Chaffinch, of one of the island races
Grey Wagtail – probably canariensis
The local wildfowl collection – Mallard, of questionable parentage and a Muscovy
Robin, of the race superbus – note the ring
At the popular picnic spot at Las Lajas, plenty of Canary
Great Spotted Woodpecker of the distinctive canariensis race
Finally, the only really different species – Blue Chaffinch
All in all, not a bad selection for a non-birding, family holiday on an island, not renown for it’s abundant bird life.