Lovely pics! That's a very chunky wagtail!Not today, but a few from what now seems to be an annual visit to Madeira for Christmas and New Year.
Grey Wagtails abound:
View attachment 499735
This female Kestrel defends her territory in the grounds of the Jardins d'Ajuda hotel where we stayed. She does the rounds just after dawn and occasionally has to repel interlopers during the day.
View attachment 499736
Here's how I deal with lizards. Only joking; I kept my foot still and it was inquisitive enough to come and investigate.
Probably the smell was attracting flies, but I didn't care as my nose was far enough away to ignore it.
View attachment 499739
Because of the excellent weather most days were devoted to sunbathing or shopping, so there were very few birdwatching opportunities, but late in the stay I persuaded Mrs Poacher to take a bus ride and short(ish) walk to Balcoes, where the Chaffinches were obliging as ever.
A very serious German birder put my efforts to shame, but I gained some credit for previous years when I'd found a Mediterranean Gull of Netherlands origin, and a juvenile Great Northern Diver (Common Loon). This particular Chaffinch was fortunately free of the disease causing
painful growths on the feet of many of them. Made a few international friends, and hopefully instilled an interest in birds, by giving bread and sultanas to some of the crowds of visitors to this belvedere.
View attachment 499741
The German guy had dipped on one of his target species, Rock Sparrow, on his visit to the Sao Laurenco peninsula. The little buggers are particularly mobile, and fly off as soon as they've noticed you're watching, or so it seems. This is the closest I got to a photo; the bird is on the left edge of the picture, but just about recognisable from the distinctive white supercilium.
View attachment 499742
By way of contrast Canaries are ridiculously easy to photograph. Here are two resplendent males, or possibly the same one twice.
View attachment 499743
View attachment 499744
The feral pigeons in downtown Funchal are replaced by probably pure-bred Rock Doves this far East. This courting couple were almost under my feet. Note that they don't have the horribly mutilated feet of most town birds; not many hairdressers out here in the wild!
View attachment 499745
Finally, most of the gulls in Madeira are of the Yellow-legged species, like this one.
View attachment 499749
I had a few glimpses of what I suspect were Lesser Black-backed and Black-headed, but no pics, unfortunately.
The male of the gooseander should be a ganderander really.