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Achigan-20090314, originally uploaded by Paradise in Portugal.

…. and this morning this chap caught these Wide mouthed Bass off the pontoon. They’re very good eating and a prized game fish in the States, though little known this side of the Atlantic. In Portugal they’re known as Achigan; the origin of the word apparently is “Michigan” as the first imported fish to Portugal came from the lake of that name.
(Unfortunately for me the poor chap has the sailing boat’s mast coming out of the top of his head – which I should really have got rid of in Photoshop before posting this entry, but there you go.)
In the meantime, Pesca, the Quinta’s German Long haired Pointer, looks on in hope that he’ll drop a fish before he can get them back in the keep net ….

Carp – fishing in the lake

Carp-20090313, originally uploaded by Paradise in Portugal.

We get many enquiries regarding fishing at the Quinta, so the above piccie is just to show you what’s available. This local lad popped in half an hour ago just for a quick cast or two before the weekend and pulled this one out within half an hour – he caught others as well, mainly Wide-mouthed Bass. He said the trick was not to waste time casting all over the place but wait until one sees them …. which says something about the water clarity hereabouts!


Fresh back from Africa, I found this Red-rumped Swallow preening itself just outside Santa Clara while taking the children to school a few days ago …. OK, it has nothing to do with the Quinta, but they’re one of my favourite species and I hope that they breed again with us this year. I s’pose this picture is pure self indulgence – I just want to be able to see it when I next open this blog!


The two pictures above were taken a few days ago when I grabbed a day off with Daniela and Carolina; and where did we go ….? To the Plains of course!
We saw some wonderful birds but I thought I’d just tickle your fancy with the above two piccies of two of our flagship species around here.
The flock of Sandgrouse we counted at 31, which shows improvement and the Gt Bustards, 47, ditto. Fantastic to see them both increasing in numbers even if they are being squeezed as regards habitat. Hard work by a lot of people; so sad then to hear that the male Spanish Imperial Eagle in the area, who bred successfully last year, was found shot two weeks ago ….