South Africa (ZA)   Rarites galore  -  Categories: Annual Kuwait Bird Reports  -  @ 03:00:32 pm

Week 22 - 04 June 2011, Sulaibikhat and Jahra East Outfall

The end of Spring Migration has provided some amazing rarties in Kuwait, starting with the Pied Stonechat, a 1st for Kuwait in late May. Images by Mike Pope

This was followed by the 3rd record of Long-tailed Skua seen at Jahra Pools and then on 01 June 2011, Rashed Al-Hajji discovered a Red Knot, the 2nd record for Kuwait - but more amazingly is that the first record was seen way back in 1962! On the same day, Artic Tern (the bird associated with the longest migration flight on record) dropped in at Jahra East Outfall giving us Kuwaiti birders much to be pleased about. I was only able to get out on the Saturday, but bad weather the preceeding days gave some hope that birds were still grounded. I stopped first at Sulaibikhat Bay and found 2 Arctic Terns in the company of Little and Sandwich Terns (sadly, too distant for a photograph). On the way out to Jahra East Outfall found this quizzical Blue-headed Agama

Blue-headed Agama

The 4m high tide was still pushing in when I arrived at JEO, together with many of the other Kuwait birders. We easily found the Red Knot resplendent in breeding plumage and looking rather plump and overfed amongst the other smaller and sleeker looking waders. We enjoyed watching it as it slowly edged closer on the incoming tide, but never quite close enough for my 400mm

Red Knot

Red Knot

Red Knot

I couldnt stay as long as I had hoped, but 2 new birds in a morning's outing was very satisfying. Just as I was leaving I noticed this distant Curlew with an obscenely long bill. My guess it is either a female European Curlew or orientalis sub-species. I never got to see the rump colour.....but my mind did wonder



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