Kuwait Annotated Checklist of Birds
Compiled by: A Al-Sirhan, KORC Secretary
20 June 2010
The Kuwait Annotated Checklist of Birds follows OSME Region List and its nomenclature and is
validated, endorsed and approved by Kuwait Ornithological Rarities Committee (KORC). It aims
to be the most current and definitive checklist for Kuwait. It will be reviewed and updated after
every KORC meeting, as new species are added and submitted Rarity Forms adjudicated.
It draws heavily on past records published by George Gregory (Gregory 2005), Kuwait list 2008
(Gregory 2008), the late Charles Pilcher’s Kuwait database that includes all past records from 1935
up to 2003 and all published Annual Bird Reports from 2001-2008 .
KORC is still reviewing past records and collecting data to ensure the checklist is as accurate as
possible. It is also documenting new records, collecting and authenticating completed KORC
Forms submitted from observers, and maintaining a Kuwait Bird Sightings database that up to now
includes 37835 sightings.
The status of each bird is stated under each species’ name and is what KORC has agreed based on
current knowledge. The Highest Daily Count (HDC) is stated under the status is taken from the last
published Kuwait Bird Report and is updated before the next Kuwait Bird Report is published.
Calculating the HDC involves collecting, collating and adding data to the database to calculate the
maximum daily count.
KORC has agreed that Rarity Reports must be submitted for the first 15 sightings of all vagrants
recorded and once that number has been reached then the status of that species will be reviewed
and possibly revised.
Week 24 - 12 June 2010, Pivot Fields and SAANR
This was Brian Fosters last weekend before he migrates north for the summer, so we headed out early to explore Pivot Fields and SAANR. Images by Mike Pope
Heading out at 6:30, the sun has already been up for almost 2-hours and it is almost 38 degrees, so birding is a little more restricted when it is so hot. Also, the heat waves and position of the sun are not conductive to good photographs at this time of year. Nevertheless, it is still good to be out birding. We searched for the Pratincole that Brian had seen last week, without success. We did find 2 Isabelline Wheatears though
At the more arid side of the Pivot Fields we found many 1st year/female Black-crowned Finch Larks and just a single male
I didnt have too much time today, so after an hour we headed to SAANR and straight to Tuhla where we spent sime time watching a Little Egret hunting and catching the abundant small fish in this pond
A single Lesser Short-toed Lark was seen sheltering in the shade with a flock of Crested Larks
We then headed to the pan in the wadi where at this time of year, evaporation is a big challenge. Most of the birds at the pan were larks of all ages and plumage variations, so it was tough sorting some of them out. We had 3 Bar-tailed Larks foraging near the car
Crested Larks is the most abundant species in the Reserve, this one managing to find some protein for sustenance
We counted 5 Hoopoe Larks, all juveniles - this one cooling off in a scrape next to the water
In amongst all the Larks, we found Short-toed Lark, this one also cooling off in a scrape next to the water
I am still amazed every time I see the tiny Kentish Plover chicks surviving in this incredible heat, trying to regulate their own body temperatures when the ambient temperature is almost 50 boggles the mind. This pair had produced two chicks out in the middle of the desert
Week 24 - 10 June 2010, Green Island and Free Trade Zone
As summer rapidly approaches, schools are closing and traffic is now so much more bearable. This morning I had time for a very quick walk around Green Island on the way to work. You cant stay out too long, as temperature is already 40 degrees by 7am, by which time I was back in my car. Images by Mike Pope
The only reason for stopping at Green Island was to see if I could locate any juvenile Red-vented Bulbuls, as I had seen some juvenile White-eared Bulbuls. Those that I saw were all adults. I then heard a canary singing and imagine my surprise when I eventually located a Yellow-fronted Canary in one of the densely covered trees. This is a resident breeder in Africa, south of the Sahara Desert (S of 15 degrees North) and is more likely an escapee from the Friday market or someone's avairy
At our offices in the Free Trade Zone, the 'resident' Speckled Pigeon is still around and is another escapee from a private collection. It is also widely distributed S of 16 degrees North where they breed and roost on cliff ledges and more recently have taken to breeding in buildings
However, the biggest African surprise of all was the brilliantly coloured Superb Starling I had seen when I left work yesterday and found it again this morning feeding on the grass verge. This could also be an escapee from a collection, but there is an outside chance of a ship-assisted landing as the Port is in the Free Trade Zone. This is a species that occurs in north east Africa (south eastern Sudan, eastwards through Ethiopia to Somalia) and south to Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania.