Bird´s route: Miño beach and marshland

The marshlands nestling at the mouth of the River Baxoi, in Miño, are home to an outstanding range of bird species. Situated behind the large expanse of sand dunes close to the town, they are mainly covered by inaccessible reed beds and sand and intertidal mudflats. Included in the Betanzos-Mandeo SAC, and therefore also in the European Union’s Natura 2000 Network, birdwatching activity in this area should also include the observation of the open waters in the ria, where a wide range of species can be seen.

Ornithological interest

During the course of the year, it is possible to see Black-headed, Mediterranean, Yellow-legged and Lesser Black-headed gulls in these marshlands. Other species include the Little Egret, Grey Heron, Eurasian Curlew and Whimbrel, as well as the Common Sandpiper. During spring and summer migration, other species of waders also visit this area. In spring, you can see the Western Yellow Wagtail. During this season, the valley is often visited by Black Kites and Eurasian Hobbies, and Sparrowhawks and Common Buzzards can be seen throughout the year. The dunes on Praia Grande provide shelter in winter for the meadow Pipit, Common Linnet and the White Wagtail. As for the open waters of the ria opposite the beach or port, in winter they are home to Black Scoters and, albeit more unusually, Velvet Scoters, as well as Great Northern and Red-throated Loons, as well as Great Cormorants and European Shags.

Phenology

This area is best visited in winter or during the spring and autumn migration seasons. In late spring and summer there are far fewer species in this area, and the crowds of beach-goers make birdwatching more difficult during the middle of the day.

What to see

Enjoy a walk along both shores of Miño beach overlooking the ria and the marshlands. If you are visiting in the afternoon, the sun may prove excessively bright when looking towards the river. Enter and leave via the dunes on Praia Grande, remembering to keep to the signposted paths.

Getting there, accessibility and recommendations

There is a large car park next to Miño’s Praia Grande beach. There is also a bus service from A Coruña, Betanzos, Sada and other nearby towns.

Resources

Details of the beaches and green spaces in the municipality of Miño are available at https://www.concellodemino.gal/es/medio-ambiente-zonas-verdes-playas-servicios

Nearby sites of ornithological interest

Miño harbour is another great place for birdwatching.

Birds of the Mariñas

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Andarríos chico
Scolopacidae
It is a small bird with fairly short legs and dark yellow feet.
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Common coalman
Paridae
It has yellow breast in contrast to the bluish tail and wings.
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Back common stone
Scolopacidae
It has a compact body, with its short legs, neck and beak. The legs have an intense orange coloration.
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Common correlimos
Scolopacidae
It is a medium-sized bird with a dark bill and legs.
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Martin common fisherman
Alcedinidae
Bright bluish green above, orange brown underneath.
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Curruca capirotada
Sylviidae
Curruca de tamaño medio, de aspecto robusto y de una tonalidad grisácea en general.
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European Robin
Turdidae
The plumage of the chest and face are orange.
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European aquatic mirlo
Cinclidae
Aquatic blackbirds are medium-sized plump birds, short tails and rather small wings.
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Common Zampullin
Podicipedidae
In the breeding season it has a bridal plumage in which the throat and neck stand out red, with a yellow spot on the membranous part of the base of the bill.
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Real Zarapito
Scolopacidae
The head of the Royal Zarapito is quite uniform in color.

Other places to visit:

Church of San Xoán de Vilanova (11th century).

Ponte do Porco Bridge (15th century).

Miño harbour.

Useful telephone numbers and addresses:

For details of bus times, call A Coruña bus station on 981 184 335
Emergency services: 112
Miño Town Hall: 981 782 058
Miño Tourist Information Office: Estrada da Praia, s/n, 15630 Miño (A Coruña). Tel.: 607 803 569. turismomino@gmail.com