Portugal Wildlife

A look through the Seasons on a Wildlife Reserve in Baixo Alentejo

Gallery of some seasonal highlights on the wildlife reserve. All the photographs are taken on the reserve.

January

Rainfall as at 6th January 2018

After being completely dry since September, Windmill Pond at last shows signs of filling up after some rainfall in November to 6th January 2018.

The newly part-filled pond attracted the first new bird species of the year. A Common Sandpiper - a Winter Migrant.

And this Green Sandpiper, another Winter Visitor.

 

Meadow Pipits also feed at Windmill Pond in January. They are also Winter and Passage Migrants.

Other migrants that feed around Windmill Pond include small groups of Common Chiffchaffs.

Yellow Lupin plants are sprouting in the Olive Grove where they have been sown as a green manure. They are a species native to Portugal.

Resident Eurasian Hoopoe feeding among the first flush of new plant growth following the late Autumn/early Winter rains.

February

Passage migrant stops for a few days to refuel - a Common Snipe.

A couple of Northern Lapwings seen flying over Windmill Pond were the first record for this species on the reserve.

In Winter large flocks of Common Woodpigeons gather on the reserve's open woodland (Montado) to feed on the abundant Sweet Oak acorns.

One of the few flowers out in February is the Dusky Dogfennel.

 

Little Egret at Windmill Pond already has its breeding plumage on show.

This aquatic plant, Stream Water-Crowfoot, starts flowering in February.

Woodlark collecting nesting material.

Hoop Petticoat Narcissus, another early flowering plant.

March

FirstIberian Pond Turtle (sometimes called Spanish Terrapin) of the year - 4th March.

Stunning display of Annual Toadflax.

After 73mm rain in five days all the Stream Water-Crowfoot flowers are now under water until they can grow back to the surface again.

One of the firsts Barn Swallows of the year flying over Windmill Pond.

 

Yellowlegged Gull, an occasional visitor, seen flying over Windmill Pond during a short break in a thunderstorm.

Windmill Pond is full again ! March 8th. The pond is now at its maximum depth and is overflowing into the downstream river.

Now Windmill Pond is full some Mallards have returned. Here a male.

 

Little Grebes are also back in residence.

 

Redlegged Partridge making territorial call.

Early Purple Orchid.

Female Common Linnet collecting nesting material.

 

An early butterfly on the wing: A Green Hairstreak.

 

Female Spanish Festoon.

Bats are about. This Greater Horsehose Bat was recorded with an Echo Meter Touch 2 Bat Detector attached to an iPad as it hunted for insects over the Windmill Pond.

Tadpoles in shallow puddle in earth road. Probably Iberian Water Frog.

Scarce Swallowtail.

April

Star of Bethlehem.

Viperine Snake.

Crown Daisy.

Moth.

 

 

Hover Fly on Corn Marigold.

Red Admiral.

Common Winter Damsels are active throughout the year.

Iberian Bluetails mating. The upper damselfy is the male (blue) and the female is below.

 

European Bee-eaters arrived back on 6th April.

Female Woodchat Shrike.

Little Grebe sitting on floating nest at edge of Windmill Pond.

Tamarisk in flower.

May

Singing Barn Swallow.

Woodchat Shrike coughing up pellet on undigested food items, presumably mostly insect carapaces.

Female or teneral male Blacktailed Skimmer.

Spanish Marbled White

 

Sweet Scabious

Redveined Darters mating while in flight over Windmill Pond.

Common Blue Damselfly ovipositing.

Hare's-Foot Clover

 

Bee collecting pollen from Smooth Sow-Thistle.

Adult Little Grebe with its three chicks.

Photographed on the same day as the adult with chicks. A new Little Grebe nest with four eggs.

Male Blue Emperor.

June

Cardoon.

Clouded Yellow.

False Ilex Hairstreak.

Lampwick.

 

Field Bindweed with Red Velvet Mite.

Female Ruddy Darter perched on branch of Sweet Oak.

Fledgling Little Owl stood at entrance to nest hole in Sweet Oak, hissing quietly.

Reversed Clover. So named because the flowers are held 'upside down' compared to other clovers.

 

Small Skipper.

Cinnabar Moth caterpillars feeding on Common Ragwort. The plant is poisonous and gives protection to the caterpillars when they eat it so that predators avoid them. The bright yellow and black stripes are warning colours to ward off potential predators.

Flax-leaved St John's-Wort.

Adult Redlegged Partridge with 12 Chicks.

 

Redlegged Partridge Chick.

Female Blacktailed Skimmer.

Griffon Vulture. One of seven that flew over the reserve one morning.

Male Blacktailed Skimmer.

 

Three Little Owlets on Sweet Oak. The owlet on the left is next to their nesting hole.

Clouded Yellow.

Small White feeding on Sweet Scabious.

Male Epaulet Skimmer.

 

29th June: Little Grebe, probably a female,with (at least) 2 day or two day-old Chicks on her back.

Three well-grown Iberian Fox cubs.

June: Well-grown Mallard Fledglings.

26th June 2018: Saw Female Wild Boar with Sounder of at least Five Mid-size Piglets. Approx 8.30 am.

July

Well-grown Iberian Fox Cub.

Female Gadwall with Nine Ducklings !

Nine Gadwall Ducklings.

Little Grebe with Four chicks, one riding on Adult's back.

 

Viperine Snake swimming in Windmill Pond.

Juvenile Woodchat Shrike.

Juvenile Common Moorhen.

Common Heliotrope.

 

Two Iberian Pond Turtles interacting.

Booted Eagle - a Summer visitor.

Juvenile Corn Buntings drinking at Windmill Pond.

Female Long Skimmer.

 

Booted Eagle, a Summer Visitor, with Redlegged Partridge prey in talons.

Viperine Snake swimming in Windmill Pond.

Windmill Pond 2018 08 28.

Juvenile House Martin.

August

Juvenile Little Grebe with Dragonfly larva prey.

Clouded Yellow feeding on a garden Sunflower.

Small Spreadwings mating.

Green Sandpiper.

 

 

Male Common Blue feeding on nectar from Common Heliotrope flowers, one of the few plants that flowers in August.

Clouded Yellow also feeding on Common Heliotrope.

Male Southern Brown Argus also feeding on Common Heliotrope.

Small Copper also feeding on Common Heliotrope.

Southern Gatekeeper also feeding on Common Heliotrope.

September

 

 

 

 

October

 

 

 

 

November

 

 

 

 

December

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wildlife Photographic Galleries :

Birds

Mammals

Iberian Fox Gallery

Flowers

Flower Meadows

Butterflies

Reptiles & Amphibians

Dragonflies

Trees

Fungi, Liverworts, Mosses & Lichens

Other Wildlife

Nearby Wildlife

Other Pages :

Hide Pond

Wildlife at Windmill Pond

Spring Watch

Weather

Nesting 2018

Seasons

Conservation Management

Trail Camera Equipment

Hide Pond Construction

Camera Trap Project

Bird Feeder Project

Mashatu, Botswana

Kalahari Wildlife

Catalonia Wildlife

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Email Contact: lince@portugalwildlife.com

 

 

 

 

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