The censuses of nesting waterbirds that are being carried out within the framework of the LIFE-SALINAS Project are giving many surprises this year, including the appearance of a new colony of ardeids that has been installed in the reed bed located at the entrance to salinas .
This colony is made up of about 120 pairs of Cattle Egret (Bubulcus ibis), 7 pairs of Little Egret (Egretta garzetta) and 3 pairs of black crowned night heron (Nycticorax nyticorax), which have been joined by 4 pairs of glossy ibis (Plegadis falcinellus), that can be seen feeding along the perimeter channel of the salt flats and in the pond of the Visitor Center ‘Las Salinas’.
The glossy ibis is the only species of ibis present in the Iberian Peninsula that was exterminated as a nesting at the beginning of the 20th century in the Doñana National Park. In 1993, 2 pairs returned to reproduce in the Albufera de Valencia, starting since then a continuous increase in their populations and colonization of new wetlands.
The January 2010 censuses yielded around 6,300 specimens throughout Spain, while the nesting population is not exactly known, although it reproduces, at least, in some wetlands in Catalonia, Valencia, Andalusia and now also in the Salinas y Arenales de San Pedro del Pinatar Regional Park.