Birds & their Behaviour

Birds & their Behaviour

Bird Bounty

The Guadarrama Regional Park is especially rich in bird species that are rare, or not present at all, in the rest of Europe, in some cases even beyond. The majestic Spanish Imperial Eagle (Aquila adalberti) is the star of the world rarities. There are only about 250 breeding pairs in the peninsula (and none elsewhere, worldwide) and there is an Interpretation Centre dedicated to the species in Pedraza, in the heart of Outback Spain country, just a few kilometres from our village.

Ethology is more fun than twitching

It is clearly a great privilege to be among bird celebrities, but we are even more interested in learning about the natural history of the birds around us, how they live their lives and how their behaviour can be studied and understood. One species in particular which we have been keeping a close eye on is the local band of Iberian Azure-Winged Magpies (Cyanopica cooki, in Spanish known as rabilago - “long-tail”).

Since 2003, it has been a delight to follow these elegant, mischievous corvids, as they “go around in gossipy groups of friends, fluttering, screeching and sticking their nose into everything in and around the trees” - a spot-on description from Juan Antonio Rodriguez, naturalist and author. We are pleased to share this adventure in bird ethology, and you don’t have to be a specialist, or even experienced - a magpie-dose of curiosity is all you need!

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