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The status of the species

Birding Málaga



The status of the species is mainly based on the criteria used by the Rarities Committee of the Spanish Ornithological Society (SEO/BirdLife), although in some cases I based the status of the species in the province of Malaga on all available records. Because taxonomy is not a static science, more than one standard is available. In the “Ornithological Map of Malaga Province”, the author (Antonio-Román Muñoz Gallego, who has also written the book "Birdwatching in Malaga along the Great Path") has followed his own preferences, which are mainly based on Gill & Donsker (IOC World Bird List, v 5.4, 2015); the same list has been used for English bird names.

  • Resident: Species which live in Malaga all year round and can be seen at any time. Lower case letters indicate that the species is scarce.
  • Wintering: The arrival of winter brings species from the north to spend the cold months in Málaga. Lower case indicates a scarce species.
  • Summer visitors: Species breeding in Málaga, arriving in spring but overwintering in Africa. Lower case indicates a scarce species. If the species is flagged with an * the species does not breed in Málaga province, despite being observed in this area during the breeding period.
  • Migrating birds: Species that can be seen during pre- and post-breeding migration. Lower case letters indicate that few of these birds migrate.
  • Dispersive species: Species that breed in the Iberian Peninsula but not in the province. Some individuals can reach Malaga province during their dispersive movements (e.g., the Spanish Imperial Eagle, Great Bustard, or the Trumpeter Finch). Typical African species, such as the Long-legged Buzzard or Rüppell’s Vulture, are also included in this category.
  • Accidental birds: Unusual visitors occasionally seen in Malaga province. In this case a second status is provided that indicates when the species is normally observed.
  • Rare birds: Birds that stray far outside their expected range, leading to great excitement in the birding world.


If more than one status is indicated, the first one is the usual status, and then secondary status.