Thursday, 8 December 2011

Escape - back to the future?

Events this week on Fuerteventura (well done to Bosse and Hans on a fine discovery!) have cast my mind back to the Allen's Gallinule that I saw in Spain in January 2007. I had a decent weekend away for that bird - seeing it and a load of decent Iberian stuff - although one of the everlasting memories was an unfitful night's sleep due to the hire car we'd got not actually having seats that reclined. Anyway, this bird failed to reach the grade and now languishes on Category E of the Spanish list. Reasons for this are that it was apparently a known escape from a local wildlife park and Britain's most famous twitcher (not Garry Bagnell, before anyone asks) claimed to have been told by a local that the bird had been picked up by a man in a van!
adult Allen's Gallinule, El Rocio, Coto Donana, Spain January 2011
Even though there was another Allen's Gallinule and an African Crake found on the Canary Islands that January, evidently this circumstantial evidence meant nothing given the apparent compounding evidence against it being a wild bird. People evidently are happy to keep anything and everything in captivity.

Back to the weekend just gone, after a bit of a dull day both bird and weather wise, I spent a couple of hours at Cross Ness with JA on Sunday. A 1st-winter Grey Plover, 1200 Dunlin, a couple of Yellow-legged Gulls, single Water and Rock Pipits were the highlights.

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