2015-01-17

A good weekend at desert wetspots and in the gardens

Permalink 15:41:33, Categories: Observation by Howard  

After last weeks cold snap the weekend weather although foggy at the start on both Friday and Saturday was much much seasonal - warm with a fresh breeze. With a low morning tide I spent the weekend in checking on our winter visitors having been away for Christmas and New Year in and around my favourite gardens and the wet spots in the south.

Buhair provided some interesting observations but given the size of the site it proved as always difficult to get close to many species seen. I was surprised by the number of Warblers noted - Chiffchaff Great Reed most likely Clamouraous Desert Warblers plus several unidentified species were seen. Serveral Snipe, Green Sand Piper and Citrine Wagtails along with at least two Marsh Harriers made the visit interesting. On the ponds as expected huge numbers of Black-winged Stilt, Blackheaded Gulls, Egrets and Herons with Moorhen, Little Grebe and a solitary Coot but no marsh or little tern seen hunting. The Rocky areas produced few Wheatears, a couple of Isabelline and a single Desert where the only ones observed.

In the desert areas under the eastern rim rock at the various green spots used for waste water disposal large numbers of small waders where seen but nothing exceptional.

The Gardens at Buri Hamalah and along the nothern fringe produced no surprises and remained generally quiet however it is always nice to see close up many of our wintering species. I failed to get a single picture of the many Bluethroats or meadow pipits seen. The Number of Corn bunting has dramatically increased since before Christmas as has the number of Skylarks including Small or Oriental.

Little Grebe
Little Grebe

Moorhen
Moorhen

Little Stint
Little Stint

Kentish Plover
Kentish Plover

Green Sand Piper
Green Sand Piper

Snipe
Snipe

Coot
Coot

Citrine Wagtail
Citrine Wagtail

Black-winged Stilt
Black-winged Stilt

Great White Egret
Great White Egret

Fancy Pigeon - one of many now to be seen around the desert
Fancy Pigeon

Desert Hyacinth
Desert Hyacinth

many bushes and shrubs now in bloosom
in flower

in flower

Marsh Harrier
Marsh Harrier

Marsh Harrier

Desert Wheatear
Desert Wheatear

From the gardens
Stonechat
Stonechat

Stonechat

Stonechat

Water Pipit
Water Pipit

Corn Bunting
Corn Bunting

Spanish Sparrow
Spanish Sparrow

Graceful Warbler
Graceful Warbler

Isabelline Shrike
Isabelline Shrike

Isabelline Wheatear
Isabelline Wheatear

Kestrel
Kestrel

Pallid Harrier
Pallid Harrier

Permalink

2014-12-30

At home in UK return in January

Permalink 17:32:00, Categories: Admin - Howard King  

Not enjoying the cold weather and lack of birds

cold and still frosty

HOME

Permalink

2014-12-14

Foggy start to weekend

Permalink 15:13:18, Categories: Observation by Howard  

On both Friday and Saturday heavy fog blanketed most of my favorite birding sites. At the Jasra roost each morning for the Hypocolius I could hear the assembled flock but only managed to glimpse a few departing shadows. By the time the fog lifted around 7 all but a few had departed. The heavy dew did however provide an opportunity to see some species normally skulking in the undergrowth including some of our odd ball escapes.

web

Isabelline Shrike
Isabelline Shrike

Isabelline Shrike

Marsh Harrier
Marsh Harrier

Marsh Harrier

Corn Bunting - over thrirty at Hamalah
Corn Bunting

Skylark one of hundreds
Skylark

Stonechat
Stonechat

Stonechat

Water Pipit
Water Pipit

Meadow Pipit
Meadow Pipit

Starling
Starling

Bimaculated Lark - five at Hamalah, one at Buri
Bimaculated Lark

Great Grey Shrike
Great Grey Shrike

Hoopoe
Hoopoe

Bluethroat
Bluethroat

Bluethroat

Cattle Egret
Cattle Egret

Pin-tailed Whydah
Pin-tailed Whydah

Red-billed quelea
Red-billed quelea

A female of something
unknown

Permalink

2014-12-06

Bright and breezy a good weekend

Permalink 15:07:26, Categories: Observation by Howard  

After last weekends disaster when rain and gales stopped play it was good to get out and chase birds around the many puddles that last weeks storm left - nothing exceptional except four Bimaculated larks at Hamalah but good birding never the less. Saturday was restricted by road closures for the Triathalon so I concentrated on Busaiteen shorelines but with a low tide not the best time for photography but good numbers of wintering species seen.


Corn Bunting
Corn Bunting

Citrine Wagtail
Citrine Wagtail

Spotted Munia originally an escape now seen across the Island
Spotted Munia

Indian Silverbill
Indian Silverbill

Grey Hypocolius from Jasra - arriving early over a hundred not so confiding birds were seen
Grey Hypocolius

Grey Hypocolius

Grey Hypocolius

Water Pipit
Water Pipit

Bimaculated Lark four seen on farmland in Hamalah no chance for closeups unfortunately
Bimaculated Lark

Bimaculated Lark

Bimaculated Lark

Ruff
Ruff

Common Sandpiper
Common Sandpiper

Grey Francolin
Grey Francolin

Osprey at an inland site
Osprey

Osprey

Wood Sandpiper
Wood Sandpiper

Permalink

2014-11-16

Traces of rain and cloudy sky

Permalink 17:11:15, Categories: Observation by Howard  

These last weekends I covered a variety of habitats looking for any new species that is passing - I found little change in the shorebirds and gardens populations other than Skylarks Water and Meow Pipit that have now arrived in numbers but the Jebel Al Dakhan did produce a few surprises. Reported first in the week I was fortunate enough to get some images on the Jebel of the Short Toed Snake Eagle that had been seen south of Riffa. Had it not moved from its high rocky perch to another location I doubt that I would have noticed it.

The other surprise was with the Whitecrowned Black Wheatears the two seen on the Jebel over the last three weeks turned into three with another specimen turning up on the western flank. However I still have not been able to find a single Mourning Wheatear but there are also good numbers of Desert, Isabelline and Red-tailed wheatears to be found.


Short-toed Snake Eagle
Short-toed Snake Eagle

Short-toed Snake Eagle

From the Gardens
Water Pipit
Water Pipit

Tawny Pipit
Tawny Pipit

Barn Swallow
Barn Swallow

Stonechat
Stonechat

Pratincole
Pratincole

Ringed Plover
Ringed Plover

Skylark
Skylark

Skylark

Issabelline Wheatear
Issabelline Wheatear

Red-tailed Wheatear this one from Buhair valley
Red-tailed Wheatear

Red-tailed Wheatear

The ever present Crested Lark
Crested Lark

Permalink

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