07/14/07

South Africa (ZA)   High tide at Jahra East  -  Categories: Photographs  -  @ 11:57:59 pm

Week 28, 14 July 07 - Jahra East

The beauty of birding on a Saturday at Jahra is that you tend to have it all to yourself. With the onset of the new moon, it was another 3.9m high tide. Images by Mike Pope

I picked out these 2 Broad billed Sandpipers in amongst some Ringed and Kentish Plovers

Broad billed Sandpiper

Curlew Sandpipers are still showing a lot of their summer plumage

Curlew Sandpiper

Ths Ruff looks a little dishevelled, as its moult starts taking effect

Ruff

Black tailed Godwits are scarce in Kuwait, but Abdulrahman al Sirhan had seen some earlier and I managed to track 3 of them down and get a disant photograph

Black tailed Godwit

A Caspian Tern having a quick drink after take-off

Caspian Tern

A lone Whiskered Tern was spotted in the mixed flocks on the marsh

Whiskered Tern

Some White winged Black Terns resting from the heat of the morning

White winged Black Terns

South Africa (ZA)   The southern crossing has started  -  Categories: Photographs  -  @ 11:36:02 pm

Week 28, 13 July 07 - Jahra East, SAANR and Sulaibikhat

My colleagues have migrated north and the waders have now commenced their migration south. I was at Jara East before sunrise, to my dismay so were the hunters - they are as aware as us birders that migration is starting. Images by Mike Pope

Rather than watch birds fall out of the sky full of bird shot, I headed to the serenity of the natural reserve and found this Bar tailed Desert Lark

Bar tailed Desert Lark

A rather scarce reptile is this Desert Monitor

Desert Monitor

For comparitive purposes, I photographed this Spiny tailed Lizard, locally they are know as Dhubs

Dhub

Crested Larks of all ages are still the predominant bird at the Tuhla pool

Crested Larks

I headed back to Jahra East to catch the high tide and ths time I had the site to myself, as it was late in the morning. This time of the morning, the light is not ideal. At 3.9m the tide pushes in quite far and this image gives you an idea of the habitat - sea, reeds and a saline marsh for the duration of the high tide

Jahra East

Waders of all varieties are now stopping over on their way south, many in remnants of their breeding plumage. A Green Sandpiper in a quiet pool

Green Sandpiper

This Common Sandpiper caught an earwig, tenderised it with its bill and then washed it in some water before it devoured this morsel

Common Sandpiper

Kentish Plovers are abundant at the momemnt

Kentish Plover

Greater Sand Plovers are still present in large numbers

Greater Sand Plover

On the way home I detoured past Sulaibikhat Bay and was rewarded with a Bar tail Godwit in full summer regalia

Bar tailed Godwit

With the hightide, the Crab Plovers were a little closer to the beach

Crab Plovers

The adult Gull billed Terns were feeding a young bird on the beach, I caught this male looking for some breakfast

Gull billed Tern

The White winged Black Terns are in various stages of intermediate plumage

White winged Black Tern

07/08/07

South Africa (ZA)   The journey south is starting  -  Categories: Photographs  -  @ 12:21:45 am

Week 27, 07 July 07 - Jahra East and Sulaibikhat

I was at Jara East just after sunrise with bleary eyes and did find the Black shouldered Kite, the record shot is not worth publishing. However, I did photographs some other migrants that have started to arrive. Images by Mike Pope

Great Reed Warblers were active and vocal.

Great Red Warbler

Reed Warblers were more abundant than the Great Reed Warblers

Reed Warbler

These two Sand Martins were taking a break from the aerial antics

Sand Martin

A young Barn Swallow contemplating flight with a loose primary feather

Barn Swallow

I was lucky to catch this Common Quail before it disappeared into the reeds

Common Quail

A White Wagtail was seen, but may have stayed in Kuwait for the summer. However, it may be a very early arrival

White Wagtail

No Yellow Wagtails yesterday, today all 7 were feldegg's, but only 1 male

Yellow Wagtail

The tide was too far out at Sulaibikhat Bay, which exposed the strange and bizarre Mud Skippers

Mud Skippers

An unidentified Dragonfly

Dragonfly

07/07/07

South Africa (ZA)   A full day out and about  -  Categories: Photographs  -  @ 11:59:29 pm

Week 27, 06 July 07 - Doha South, Jahra Farm, Tuhla, Doha Spit, Kabed

Pekka and I had a full day out covering many sites, but trying to locate the Black shouldered Kite (6th record for Kuwait) that Pekka saw yesterday, without luck. After dark we were out with Gary Brown. Images by Mike Pope

A desert sunset near Kabed on a clear day is special and after this it was time for the creatures of the night to make their appearance.

Sunset

The Lesser Geboa's were first out after dark and it is amazing how agile and quick these tiny rodents are. We also saw Gerbil, Jerd and Red Fox

Lesser Jeboa

The Domino Beetles which we normally see during the day, now come out at night as it is too hot during the day this time of year

Domino Beetle

There were many of these Wolf Spiders around much later in the evening

Wolf Spider

We spent some time at Doha Spur with the incoming tide and the number of waders arriving are starting to increase as preparation for the journey south builds up. The Lesser Sand Plovers are plentiful at the moment

Greater Sand Plovers

The Crab Plovers numbers doubled since yesterday, as they start returning from the breeding ground on Bubiyan Island

Crab Plover

A visit to the Tuhla pool is obligatory when you have a whole day out, as it tends to produce the goods on most occassions. This juvenile Long legged Buzzard was not in great condition and had been in the same place for 4-days

Long legged Buzzard

A second slimmer looking Steppe Buzzard was also present for comparison

Buzzard - ID?

A European Roller stopped over for a drink

European Roller

The bird of the day today was this Temmincks Horned Lark at the pump house, the first one seen in the reserve for Pekka and I

Temmincks Horned Lark

The Gazelle has survived and seems in great condition, according to the Ranger it may be pregnant

Gazelle

We hadnt been to Jahra Farm for sometime and were delighted to see the Bank Myna's with fully fledged juveniles, this adult eyed me suspiciously

Bank Myna

Jahra Farms is one of the few places to find Green Toad

Green Toad

We had no luck at Doha South with the juvenile Swamphens, but I did photograph this good looking Dragonfly - id still pending

Dragonfly

07/03/07

South Africa (ZA)   Waders returning  -  Categories: Photographs  -  @ 10:42:28 pm

Week 26, 30 June 07 - Doha South and Jahra East

My family has migrated south for the summer to experience a SA winter. I found some time to explore Doha South and Jahra East and discovered that some of the waders are back in Kuwait, already! Images by Mike Pope

I headed back to Doha South to explore the pools where Pekka confirmed the Swamphens breeding, I found Purple Swamphens, but without their young on this visit

Purple Swamphen

A lone Coot made an appearance, but disappeared very qucikly as this site is still prone to hunters making unwanted appearances, sadly

Coot

Little Grebes were abundant with young juveniles nearby

Little Grebe

Moorhen were also observed with young

Moorhen

From Doha South I headed to Jahra East outfall and was surprised by the number of waders that had suddenly made an appearance, with the likes of flocks of Terek Sandpiper, European Oystercatchers, Crab Plover amongst the others. This is part of a flock of Curlews with some Greater Sand Plovers

Greater Sand Plovers

There were numerous Redshanks scattered about

Redshank

A Sanderling in breeding plumage made an appearance and caused some confusion with the intial ID

Turnstone

The Black winged Stilts have been present most of the summer, this small group had a fly over

Black winged Stilt

We continue to search for Saunders amongst the Little Terns

Little Tern

The Slender bill Gulls are all in winter or non-breeding plumage

Slender bill Gull

Cream coloured Coursers are almost becoming a guarenteed tick at Jahra East

Cream coloured Courser

07/02/07

South Africa (ZA)   Early June birding  -  Categories: Photographs  -  @ 12:55:27 am

Week 23, 8 June 07 - Jahra East, SAANR - Tuhla and Kempinski's

It feels like I have been grounded the last month due to work committments. I have finally found time to upload some images from early in June. Images by Mike Pope

I headed back to Jahra East to try and re-locate the Spur winged Plover without luck, but was fortunate to find some other good birds, like these juvenile Cream coloured Coursers

Cream coloured Coursers

A lone and late Collared Pratincole came soaring overhead

Collared Pratincole

I found two juvenile White tailed Plovers where the Spur winged Plover was last seen

White tailed Plovers

I didnt relocate the Black Tern, but did photograph a White winged Black Tern

White winged Black Tern

A juvenile White cheeked Tern

White cheeked Tern

A Squacco Heron in one of the pools created by the rising tide

Squacco Heron

Sand Martins are still present in small numbers, sharing the sky with a few Barn Swallows

Sand Martin

The Blue throated Lizard escapes the heat of the ground by climbing to the highest point of the sabkha scrub

Blue throated Lizard

A brief stopover at Tuhla in SAANR didnt produce too much, athough the Crested Larks were in abundance around the pool. This juvenile seemed oblivious to me

Crested Lark

A Rock Dove suddenly appeared - Feral or not is anybodies guess

Rock Dove

We spent a morning at the Kempinski Resort and I managed to photograph these White cheeked terns with my 17 - 85mm zoom lens

White cheeked Terns

South Africa (ZA)   Summer Birds  -  Categories: Photographs  -  @ 12:29:17 am

A selection of summer birds

Pekka has been out and about to a few of the regular spots. The summer heat is building, which reduces the birding hours and as a result birding is a little quiet in June. Images by Pekka Fagel

The Little Terns are active around Sulaibikhat Bay

Little Tern

A Sanderling foraging in the shallows on Sulaibikhat Bay

Sanderling

Crested Larks were in abundance at the Tuhla Pool

Crested Larks

An obliging Purple Swamphen at Jahra East

Purple Swamphen

Pekka has long suspected the Purple Swamphens were breeding at Doha South and eventually got a record image to substantiate the fact. This is a great breeding record for Kuwait

Purple Swamphen

South Africa (ZA)   Dragonflies  -  Categories: Photographs  -  @ 12:15:09 am

A selection of Dragonflies

Birds have been scarce this early summer, so Pekka found the dragonflies more obliging. Images by Pekka Fagel

A male Broad Scarlet

Broad Scarlet

A female Broad Scarlet

Broad Scarlet

A magnificent Bladetail

Bladetail

A Slender Skimmer

Slender Skimmer

South Africa (ZA)   Kuwait Night Life  -  Categories: Photographs  -  @ 12:09:45 am

Creaturs of the night in Tuhla

Pekka Fagel was out in SAANR after dark and found some insects that remain hidden during the day. Images by Pekka Fagel

A black Scorpion running for cover

Black Scorpion

This Wolf Spider stood its ground

Wolf Spider

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