Moments with migrants
Throughout more or less the whole of the first part of spring I have been sharing my enjoyment of the birds and other wildlife in Extremadura with guests who I have taken out into the field. Almost the whole time, the sun has been shining and the temperatures have been more like May than early spring. Just this week, we are being rained on (the land needs it desperately) and this break in the weather has matched exactly a few days to be based at home. It is a great opportunity to take stock of the season so far. Most of the summer migrants have arrived on cue and the rest somewhat earlier than usual. Observers in many countries are recording arrival dates of migrant birds and these are showing a trend for some species to be arriving a little earlier each year. The same is true in Spain. This year's big surprise in this respect were the Red-necked Nighjars, which were first heard in our village on 10th April, a good week or so before I usually hear them from home.