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Tours per country Catalonia & Aragon Grand Tour

Catalonia & Aragon Grand Tour

Birding in Spain. A birdwatching tour visiting the wealthiest Spanish regions of Catalonia and Aragó where we will explore gorgeous natural areas such as Ebro Delta, Los Monegros and Pyrenees. Lonely plains; mild, flovered hills; wooded slopes (from Holm Oak to Mountain Pine); massive gorges; dense scrubs and shrubs as well as a wide range of wetlands composes an awesome scenery. A number of specialities fill up the ancient plain and expanses to the mountains around it. This is a land of contrasts, where in the morning you can see Lammergeiers and Black Woodpecker in the dramatic Pyrenees and in the afternoon enjoy the special Little Bustard "jumps" in the steppes.

This tour take place in a very exciting moment in nature year-cycle as it is that of bird migration. We'll experience it by watching how tiny pools in the steppes attrack small passage birds to refresh themselves. Hundreds of passage waders will wait for us in the major wetlands as Ebro Delta and Aiguamolls de l'Empordà. And all of that to see over 210 species of birds!

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We specially concentrate in the major specialities living along the Ebro Basin; Little & Great Bustards, Lammergeier & Cinereous Vulture, Pin-tailed & Black-bellied Sandgrouses, Wryneck & Black Woodpecker, colourful birds such as Roller and Bee-eater and smaller birds as Dupont's, Calandra & Lesser Short-toed Larks or Subalpine, Orphean & Spectacled Warblers along with Citril Finch, Red-necked Nightjar, Purple Swamphen, Black Wheatear, Caspian Tern... We would make an effort to locate all of them!!

Days 1 & 2. Ebro Delta. Meet and wellcome at Barcelona International airport or in another place previously agreed. This first day we will explore Ebro Delta, where we will spend two nights. We will have two full days to explore this vast wetland and the variety of birds that it hosts. Greater Flamingo, Audouin's & Slender-billed Gulls, Glossy Ibis, Western Swamphen, Black-winged Stilt, Whiskered Tern and Squacco Heron are all common! Collared Pratincole, Savi's Warbler, Great Reed Warbler, Curlew Sandpiper are more scarce. Here the variety of migratory birds can include some Crakes along with scarcer species...

Day 3. Lleida Steppes. After breakfast we will have a last look to Ebro Delta before going to the inmense steppe area known as Los Monegros. There we will look for Black-eared Wheatear, Black Wheatear, Great Spotted Cuckoo, Rock Sparrow, Hoopoes, Turtle Dove, Iberian Grey Shrike, Short-toed Eagle, Lesser Kestrel, Roller and, if lucky, Eagle Owl.

Day 4. Steppes. Full day in the steppes where we will look for Pin-tailed & Black-bellied Sandgrouses, Stone Curlews, Greater & Lesser Short-toed Larks and the always elusive Dunpont's Lark... After a midday break we will spend the afternoon enjoying Thekla Larks, Tawny Pipit, Alpine Swift and Melodious Warbler. This day we will have our nocturnal safari, where we will have excellent sights on Red-necked Nightjar, Scops Owl, Long-eared Owl and Barn Owl!

Day 5. Lleida Steppes. Morning birding in a different location in the steppes. Here there is an excellent density of Little Bustards and Rollers along with Great Spotted Cuckoos, Ortolan Buntings, Woodchat Shrikes and Subalpine and Orphean Warblers... The area hosts some pairs of Black-winged Kites...depending on the year! Arrival to the Pyrenees in the afternoon, where we will be two nights. 
Day 6. Pyrenees. Morning birding in the almong orchads around our accommodation. Blue Rock Thrush, Woodlark, Crested Lark, Golden Oriole, Red-backed Shrike, Wryneck and Subalpine, Dartford & Sardinian Warblers can be easily seen. Along the day we will enjoy excellent views on Lammergeier but also Egyptian Vulture, Griffons and Black Vultures.
Day 7. Pyrenees. Morning birding to enjoy a number of amazing birds. We will visit a number of locations looking for Citril Finch, Common Rock Thrush, Alpine Chough, Common Crossbill, Ring Ouzel, Black Woodpecker, Mistle Thrush, Firecrest, Crested Tit, Rock Bunting and Short-toed Treecreeper. In the afternoon transfer to Aiguamolls de l'Empordà.
Day 8. Aiguamolls de l'Empordà. Full day visiting this wonderful wetland. Here we will have good chances for Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Pallid Swift, Moustached Warbler, Little Bittern, European Kingfisher and several migratory birds including Crakes and scarcer birds such as Great Snipe
Final transfer to Barcelona (about 2 hours) and delivery in town or in the airport.

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What weather conditions should you expect?

May is a clear, quiet month. Spring is here for long time ago so temperatues will stand about 20ºC-25ºC most of the days. However we can expect to find some rainfalls in our way. You can expect a cold raising in both Pyrenees and Los Monegros.

We suggest to all our clients to bring sunglasses, a cap and sun screen. Clothes should be generally thin (cotton or similar)  but we always advise to include at least one sweater.

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tour info

Price per person:

    1280€*

single room surcharge:
300€
deposit:
400€

 

  23rd to 30th April, 2018            

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Tour lenght: 8 days - 7 nights         

Departing / Arrival city: Barcelona

Walking effort: Easy throughout

Tour leader & Birding guide: Carles Oliver


VACANCIES

* price in double room. Including all ground services 


target species

Black-shouldered Kite

Little Bittern (Ixobrychus minutus)
Black-crowned Night Heron (Nycticorax nycticorax)
Squacco Heron (Ardeola ralloides)
Purple Heron (Ardea purpurea)
Glossy Ibis (Plegadis falcinellus)
Greater Flamingo (Phoenicopterus roseus)
Lammergeier (Gypaetos barbatus)
Cinereous Vulture (Aegypius monachus)
Egyptian Vulture (Neophron percnopterus)
Short-toed Eagle (Circaetus gallicus)
Montagu's Harrier (Circus pygargus)
Golden Eagle (Aquila chrysaetos)
Booted Eagle (Aquila pennata)
Bonelli's Eagle (Aquila fasciata)
Lesser Kestrel (Falco naumanni)
Purple Swamphen (Porphyrio porphyrio)
Great Bustard (Otis tarda)
Little Bustard (Tetrax tetrax)
Black-winged Stilt (Himantopus himantopus)
Stone-Curlew (Burhinus oedicnemus)
Collared Pratincole (Glareola pratincola)
Slender-billed Gull (Croicocephalus genei)
Audouin's Gull (Larus audouinii)
Gull-billed Tern (Gelochelidon nilotica)
Caspian Tern (Hydroprogne caspia)
Whiskered Tern (Chlidonias hybridus)
Black-bellied Sandgrouse (Pterocles orientalis)
Pin-tailed Sandgrouse (Pterocles alchata)
Great Spotted Cuckoo (Clamator glandarius)
Red-necked Nightjar (Caprimulgus ruficollis)
Scops Owl (Otus scops)
European Roller (Coracias garrulus)
European Bee-eater (Merops apiaster)
Wryneck (Jynx torquilla)
Black Woodpecker (Dryocopus martius)
Calandra Lark (Melaconorypha calandra)
Lesser Short-toed Lark (Calandrella rufescens)
Thekla Lark (Galerida theklae)
Dupont's Lark (Chersophilus duponti)
Crag Martin (Ptynoprogne rupestris)
Red-rumped Swallow (Hirundo daurica)
Black-eared Wheatear (Oenanthe hispanica)
Black Wheatear (Oenanthe leucura)
Blue Rock Thrush (Monticola solitarius)
Rock Thrush (Monticola saxatilis)
Cetti's Warbler (Cettia cetti)
W Orphean Warbler (Sylvia hortensis)
Spectacled Warbler (Sylvia conspicillata)
Subalpine Warbler (Sylvia cantillans)
Sardinian Warbler (Sylvia melanocephala)
W Bonelli's Warbler (Phylloscopus bonelli)
Golden Oriole (Oriolus oriolus)
Bearded Reedling (Panurus biarmicus)
Southern Grey Shrike (Lanius meridionalis)
Woodchat Shrike (Lanius senator)
Alpine Chough (Pyrrhocorax graculus)
Red-billed Chough (Pyrrhocorax pyrrhocorax)
Spotless Starling (Sturnus unicolor)
Citril Finch (Carduelis citrinella)
Rock Sparrow (Petronia petronia)
Rock Bunting (Emberiza cia)