General Information

Well due to my company not giving me enough holiday, or was that I used it all birdwatching in ! A short pre Christmas tourist break mainly for sightseeing and socialising with a little birding squeezed in. We travelled from Stansted to Alghero with Ryan air (very cheap) and hired a car from Hertz, which although the booking suggested that CDW was included it was not. We stayed in the nice  Hotel catalunya which very comfortable. The prices of everything apart from petrol was cheaper than the UK. Food and drink was excellent and we indulged. The weather was excellent hot and sunny, although a little chilly at night, we sat out drinking until about 9pm before going inside. Birding - well only 3 targets and just a little general birding while travelling the tourist sites.



Daily Guide

Friday 1st December.

We arrived without problem; and settled into the hotel before walking round the old city walls, so of which are coastal. Hooded crows and collared doves were common. Grey wagtail and cormorants were on the shore, and one was watched fishing underwater. A lesser whitethroat was found in a bush but there was little else apart from yellow legged gulls, seen during our tour of the town and bars.



Yellow Legged Gull

Yellow Legged Gull


Saturday 2nd December.

A reasonable start considering our late night drinking. We headed to Capo Caccia in search for my first target, Barbary partridge. No sign in a brief search. We headed for our first touristy visit, Neptunes Grotto. The cave system was excellent, and had a few rock doves nesting in them. The cliffs around held lots of gulls and a peregrine falcon along with loads of crag martins. Several Sardinian warblers made lots of noise but did not show and a couple of wrens were more co-operative. The next stop was the snack bar just down from the caves. Here both sardinian warblers and my second target Marmora’s warblers showed themselves by the car. The views only brief. The surrounding scrub held a couple of Marmora’s and they did show a little better. Wall lizards and locusts were seen along with loads of butterflies, some commonly recognised ones and some not identified.

The second Touristy stop was Nurage Palmavera, an ancient settlement, which had some wildlife, lots of wall lizards and butterflies, and a couple of black redstarts.

Porto Conte was the next stop to see the lighthouse, which again had black redstarts and loads of cats. A couple of shags and fantastic views. Fertilia was the late lunch stop, with both black redstarts, common redstarts and white wagtails in the car park / sculpture park area. A stop along the road produced a black kite, kestrel, peregrine, raven and buzzard in a thermal.

We headed to Capo Falcone, the northwest tip of Sardinia, stopping at lots of places along the way for views and birds. There were lots of kestrels including a unseasonal lesser kestrel, and several buzzards. Little egrets and black winged stilts, meadow pipits, robin, stonechats, chiff chaff, great tit, blue tit, long tailed tit, common starling, and Spanish sparrow. On arrival at Stintino we headed to the furthest point to view the islands, here a barbary partridge ran out onto the road and joined two others on the verge, they flushed by my window winding down. We had a look round and headed back to Alghero for a night of over indulgence.






Iberian Chiff Chaff

Iberian Chiffchaff





Spotless Starling

Spottless Starling


Southern Speckled Wood

Southern Speckled Wood


Sunday 3rd December.

Again a reasonable start due to the night before as we headed south along the coast on road 49. We stopped lots along the way for serin, stonechats and our third target, Corsican citril finch. We also had good views of a golden eagle and between km marker 7 and 8 we found the griffon roost with at least 15 birds thermalling with ravens. From here we headed south past Bosa to Cabras. In Bosa we had lots of spotless starlings. At Cabras there are large freshwater lakes and salt lagoons. The first stop was a reserve Pauli’s Sali. It was difficult to find and poorly signed. And there was not much here, the hide was in poor repair and overgrown with reeds. There were lots of black necked grebes, pochard and a couple of hundred greater flamingo’s. A few marsh harriers quartered over the marsh and we drove around the tracks, which a 4x4 is recommended in the wet but my fiat Panda did manage as rain had been in short supply. Great white egrets, spotless starlings and skylarks were abundant and a kingfisher a welcome sight. We then headed to Cabras for a late lunch. Our next stop was Tharros a Phonecian ruined city, built in 8th century BC – now that’s old. We stopped for thousands of flamingos in the lagoons on the way. In the ruins we had loads of Italian sparrows, black redstarts and Sardinian warblers. The journey back to Alghero was uneventful, where we over indulged on food and drink again.


Golden Eagle

Golden Eagle


Griffon Vulture

Griffon Vulture


Greater Flamingo's

Greater Flamingo’s



Monday 4th December.

Not much but a few cattle egrets, before heading home.







Directions and more info on the birding sites can be found in the following books.

A Birdwatchers'guide to ItalyLuciano Ruggieri and Igor Festari, ISBN 84-87334-86-5 – This book is quite up to date and most things are correct.

Michelin Map Sardegna, Italy regional 566, ISBN 2-06-100871-2.

For the tourist things we used the Eyewitness Guide to Sardinia. ISBN 1-40531-203-3.


Birds - 57 Species

Little Grebe

Black Necked Grebe

Shag (desmarestii)


Cattle Egret

Little Egret

Great White Egret

Grey Heron

Greater Flamingo



Griffon Vulture

Golden Eagle

Black Kite

Marsh Harrier

Common Buzzard (arrigonii)


Lesser Kestrel

Peregrine Falcon

Barbary Partridge



Black Winged Stilt

Yellow Legged Gull

Rock Dove

Collared Dove



Crag Martin

White Wagtail

Grey Wagtail

Wren (koenigi)



Black Redstart



Lesser Whitethroat

Marmora’s Warbler

Sardinian Warbler

Zitting Cisticola

Reed Warbler

Iberian Chiffchaff

Great Tit (ecki)

Blue Tit

Long Tailed Tit (irbii)


Hooded Crow (sardonicus)



Spotless Starling

Spanish Sparrow

Italian Sparrow


Goldfinch (tchusii)


Corsican Citril Finch


Misc Animals -9 Species



Wall Lizard

Clouded Yellow

Red Admiral

Southern Orange Tip

Red Admiral

Painted Lady

Southern Speckled Wood

Large White


If you want any other information please contact me

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