Only two under par after seven holes and still six strokes off the lead, the Englishman followed three successive birdies with an eagle at the long 12th.
Suddenly seven under, Ferrie was only one behind the three overnight pacesetters - Swede Rikard Karlberg, Dutchman Maarten Lafeber and Dane Jeppe Huldahl.
Ferrie's countrymen Matthew Nixon and David Howell had already showed what was possible on the Parador de Málaga Golf course.
Nixon, a 21 year old former British Boys Champion from Manchester who came through the Qualifying School last November, had made the cut with nothing to spare on one under, but fired a five under 65.
Former Ryder Cup star Howell, meanwhile, had no fewer than eight birdies in the space of 11 holes from the third, but there was also a double bogey on the short fifth in there and when he dropped another shot at the par five 14th he was back alongside Nixon on six under.
Ferrie, joint 45th when he teed off, was heading for his lowest-ever European Tour round when he added further birdies at the 14th and 15th - and the second of those took the 32 year old into a one shot lead at nine under.
At eight under par for the day on the par 70 lay-out he even still had a chance of The European Tour's first-ever 59, but it needed three more closing birdies for that.
Howell, meanwhile, matched Nixon's 65 to be in the clubhouse on six under as well.