05/29/08

South Africa (ZA)   Kubbah Island  -  Categories: Photographs  -  @ 08:36:17 am

Week 21, 24 May 2008 - Kubbah Island

It has been too long since my last posting, work taking precedence over migration.
Last weekend I was fortunate in being able to charter a boat to visit Kubbah Island. At this time of year a number of Tern species start their breeding cycle. Almost all were still on eggs, so Im thinking of a return journey once the eggs have hatched. Images by Mike Pope

Kubbah is a very small island but each Tern specie has its unique requirements for nesting areas, so their is little competition for habitat between species. As we approached the island, Bridled Terns used the boat to roost. Bridleds are the most prolific specie on the island

Bridled Tern

Perched on a salt bush

Bridled Tern

Two birds squabbling quite aggressively over a prospective nesting site

Bridled Tern

Single eggs are laid on the ground under a salt bush

Bridled Tern

Lesser crested Terns had their nesting colony in the middle of the island. As you approached the site, the birds got airborne and made it known we were getting too close

Lesser crested Tern

A Lesser crested Tern alighting on its single egg

Lesser crested Tern

We counted around 70 eggs in this single colony

Lesser crested Tern

White cheeked Terns roosted on the rocky section of the island and were also agitated if we got too close

White cheeked Tern

This bird must have had a chick, but we could not locate it

White cheeked Tern

Displaying on the rocks

White cheeked Tern

White cheeked Terns also lay a single egg, which is very well camouflaged on the avaible habitat

White cheeked Tern

A pair of Lesser Kestrels were roosting on the masts/antenna. This is the male circling over us

Lesser Kestrel

There were still some passerines on migration. A Marsh Warbler resting on a fence

Marsh Warbler

Olivaceous Warbler gleening leaves on the small bushes. Garden Warblers were also present, but appeared very tired

Olivaceous Warbler

Red backed Shrikes are still to be seen all over Kuwait, so not surprising to see a 1st year bird on Kubbah

Red backed Shrike

We were thrilled to find a Socotra Cormorant hunting on the fringes of the island and one of our closest sightings to date

Socotra Cormorant

On the way back, we came down the coast from Mahboula and found our second Socotra Cormorant - althought it took flight as we approached. This is quite far north of Zour where they have traditionally been seen

Socotra Cormorant

Getting away with characteristic bent nect

Socotra Cormorant

Our third sighting was of two juvenile birds on a buoy near Al Kout

Socotra Cormorant

A quizzical look before departure

Socotra Cormorant

See ya.....

Socotra Cormorant

05/04/08

English (AU)   Finns Trip to Kuwait IV/08  -  Categories: Trip Reports  -  @ 12:00:13 pm

Kuwait - 3rd to 13th of April

INTRODUCTION

The story begins

For full details please click HERE

Waiting for a flight

We’re driving in a morning traffic from Kirkkonummi to Helsinki-Vantaa airport when I received a call. The rest of our group, Janne Kilpimaa, Petri Kuhno, Tero Linjama and Tero Toivanen, were already at the airport and they had found out that our flight to Frankfurt had been cancelled! Finally we managed to get to the airport too and luckily we had got new flights so we’re now going to fly first to Stockholm, then to Istanbul and then finally to Kuwait city.

So we had a little bit longer time to wait for our first flight and we decided to go to eat to a restaurant. At 1 p.m. our plane left to Stockholm where we were an hour later. Surprisingly we had a lunch also in this flight and at 2.10 p.m. we had the next flight to Istanbul and we ate again…

The Turkish Airlines plane was extremely hot but finally at 6.35 p.m. we landed. The only birds we saw I the last light were Yellow-legged Gulls, Cormorants, Magpies and Hooded Crows.

At 9.45 p.m. took off our last flight to Kuwait city. Also this flight was sweaty but once again we had good dinner so at least we weren’t hungry.
For full details please click HERE

05/01/08

South Africa (ZA)   A first for Kuwait at Jahra East Outfall  -  Categories: Rarities  -  @ 10:19:06 am

Week 18, 27 April 2008 - Jahra East Outfall

We have visiting group of French birders and with their experience have found and photographed a first for Kuwait, in the form of an Oriental Pratincole (Glareola maldivarum). Digi-scoped Images by Pierre Crochette


The bird was seen with a flock of Collared Pratincoles, which gave the oppurtunity to compare and verify the differences between the two species. Oriental was separated from Collared by: shorter tail, shorter bill with thicker base and less red to the base than Collared, noticealbly shorter legs and lack of white trailing edge in flight

Oriental Pratincole

Oriental Pratincole

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