Archives for: 2007

2007-12-12

A quiet afternoon

Permalink 08:42:51 am, Categories: Observation by Howard  

December is not the most active of months other than pinning down wintering raities. However other than the White-Fronted Goose this year even these have been few and far between. The Goose continues to wander about Badaan, still wary it is at least getting easier to photograph.

White-fronted Goose Anser albifrons
White-fronted Goose

White-fronted Goose

One surprise today were the Sand Martins and Swallow hawking over the fields, but are they early returnees or just late departing for warmer climes further south.

Sand Martin Riparia riparia
Sand Martin

Swallow Hirundo rustica
Swallow

The family group of Rosy Starings are also still around, as a species they are an irregular visitor often when occuring in large numbers, these have now been around since September.

Juvenile Rosy Starling Pastor roseus
Rosy Starling

Rosy Starling

We shall be stopping for our Christmas breaks soon and going against the migration by heading north so Seasons greetings to all our visitors

Eid Mubarak, Happy Chrismas and Happy New Year

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2007-12-09

Weekend

Permalink 09:33:50 am, Categories: Observation by Howard  

No real change in the species around however still plenty to see, on the shore I spent some time going around Sitra Island and the bays around Bapco Refinery and tank farm. One of the most impressive sights I came across were the tens of thousands of Slender-billed Gulls roosting south of the main Refinery.

Slender-billed Gulls Larus genei

Slender-billed Gulls
The flocks did also contain many other gull species and a fair mix of terns.

Large numbers of migrant Caspian Tern were found, our local resident pairs are busy breeding at the moment.
Caspian Tern Sterna caspia
Caspian Tern

Great Cormorants Phalacrocorax carbo
Great Cormorants

A surprising number of Tawny Pipits Anthus campestris were also found close to the shore
Tawny Pipit

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2007-12-05

A day in the desert

Permalink 03:45:48 am, Categories: Observation by Howard  

I had set myself the task to get some photographs of our local version of the Desert Lark Ammomanes deserti, the local subspecies being insularis. Often found in pairs they are extremly difficult to pick out amonst the rocks and boulders, that is unless they call or make a short flight. Sedentary the local subspecies can be reguarded as Bahrains only endemic.


Desert Lark Ammomanes deserti
Desert Lark

Desert Lark

Desert Lark

Desert Lark

Unlike the Desert Larks Wheatears are easily found the most common being Mourning and Desert, but are generally unlike the Desert Larks quite nervous, and do not allow such a close approach.

Mourning Wheatear Oenanthe lugens
Mourning Wheatear

Desert Wheatear Oenanthe deserti
Desert Wheatear

With camping season upon us when Manama moves into the desert and takes its garbage with it food is plentiful however natural food is always availiable if one looks hard enough.

Locust
Locust

Never a problem to find and always willing to put on a show Domesticated Camels do provide plenty of entertainment.

singing camels

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2007-12-02

A good day out

Permalink 01:58:25 pm, Categories: Observation by Howard  

The bird of the day for me had to be the Shell Duck Tadorna tadorna I encountered in the morning close to Ras Tubli. I have not personally seen one in Bahrain since 1997 when I had twelve at the same location.

Shell Duck Tadorna tadorna
Shell Duck

I have presented here some of the more common species I encountered as I moved around Tubli Bay before driving to Badaan Farm to meet with Brendan and our ringing session.

Little Stint Calidris minuta
Little Stint

Ringed Plover Charadrius hiaticula
Ringed Plover

Caspian Tern Sterna caspia
Caspian Tern

Great Northern Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo
Gt Northern Cormorant

Curlew Numenius arquata
Curlew

Dunlin Calidris alpina
Dunlin

Greenshank Tringa nebularia
Greenshank

Grey Plover Pluvialis squatarola
Grey Plover

Ruddy Turnstone Arenaria interpres
Turnstone

Western Reef Heron Egretta gularis
Western Reef Heron

Slender-billed Gull Larus genei
Slender-billed Gull

At Badaan things were slow in the nets we did however manage one new ringing species that of Song Thrush, one of many now in the palm groves at the farm. When we arrived the workers were busy collected the freshly cut grass surrounded as usual by Cattle Egrets.

Cattle Egret Bubulcus ibis
Cattle Egret

Masked Shrike Lanius nubicus note the ring in the second picture
Masked Shrike

Masked Shrike

Tawny Pipit Anthus campestris
Tawny Pipit

White-fronted Goose Anser albifrons Still hanging around the farm
White-fronted Goose

Corn Bunting Emberiza calandra
Bunting

Bunting

Bunting

Permalink

Friday 30th November

Permalink 11:28:48 am, Categories: Observation by Howard  

A quiet day with few birds in the nets but over Badaan Farm a pair of Kestrels a single Pallid Harrier and Sparrow Hawk kept us entertained. Abdullah reported a Houbara Bustard at Budaiyah the night before and another this evening at Askar.


Kestrel Falco tinnunculus
Kestrel

Pallid Harrier Circus macrourus
Pallid Harrier

Grey Fancolin Francolinus pondicerianus
Grey Fancolin

Indian Mongoose Herpestes javanicus or Herpestes auropunctatus
Indian Mongoose

Black-winged Stilts Himantopus himantopus
other than some distant little Grebes the only birds seen on a brief stop at Dumistan pools
Black-winged Stilts

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2007-11-23

Quick outing

Permalink 12:11:45 pm, Categories: Observation by Howard  

Only had a few hours this morning to spare so I went over to Asry Lagoon set between the Shipyards and Pelletisation works. The tide was out unfortunately however I did encounter a Desert Wheatear along with its usual friend a Desert Warbler. All other species of Wheatear seem to chase the warbler off however these two seem to have a symbiotic relationship find one normally you can find the other.


Desert Warbler
Desert Warbler
Hopping along
Desert Warbler
Desert Wheatear
Desert Wheatear

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2007-11-18

Chasing shadows

Permalink 04:06:52 am, Categories: Observation by Howard  

A frustrating afternoon and early evening was spent trying to net and ring some new species at Badaan Farm for our project but at every turn we seemed doomed by our own endeavours. We did see some good birds though including Marsh Harrier, Sparrow Hawk, Short Eared Owl and Egyptian Nightjars.


Blue-cheeked Bee-eater
Blue-cheeked Bee-eater
Stonechat
Stonechat

Sparrow Hawk
Sparrow Hawk

Sparrow Hawk

Permalink

2007-11-15

Thursday 15th Nov

Permalink 06:33:57 pm, Categories: Observation by Howard  

November is not always the most productive time to bird here with so many migrants having already passed but today Badaan Farm exceeded expectations. Besides a few Blue-cheeked Bee-eaters, the continued presence of the Purple Heron, both Rosy Coloured and ordinary Starling, a Pallid Harrier that kept making long hunting forays across the fields added some real spice to an otherwise ordinary day.

Starling
Starling
Rosy coloured Starling
Rosy coloured Starling
Great Grey Shrike
Great Grey Shrike

Great Grey Shrike
These Cattle Egret took to the trees when the Pallid Harrier turned up
Cattle Egret
Pallid Harrier
Pallid Harrier

Pallid Harrier

Pallid Harrier
Common Sandpiper
Common Sandpiper
Grey Fancolin
Grey Fancolin
Blue-cheeked Bee-eater
Blue-cheeked Bee-eater

Blue-cheeked Bee-eater
Isabelline Wheatear
Isabelline Wheatear
Redshank
Redshank
Ruff
Ruff
Stonechat
Stonechat
Male Stonechat
Stonechat
Tawny Pipit
Tawny Pipit
White-cheeked Bulbul
White-cheeked Bulbul
White Wagtail
White Wagtail

Permalink

2007-11-11

Out and about this weekend

Permalink 07:19:29 am, Categories: Observation by Howard  

I finished visiting most of the sites around Maharraq this morning even though development and reclamation continues at every point along the shore so many new lagoons and mudflats have been created that the number of waders terns and gulls has not diminished. The problem is now one of gaining access across the soft sand in the newly reclaimed areas. For the best light most sites are best visited in the morning and on an incoming tide.


Flocks of terns are everywhere - here largely Lesser Crested and Little Terns.
mixed terns
enlargement of section from photo above
mixed
as are mixed flocks of Back-headed and Slender-billed Gulls, these right along side one of the new roads. Great as long as you don't stop when they have a tendancy to up up and away.
mixed gulls
Waders are numerous but often when the tide is out distant, as was the case this morning.
curlew sandpiper

Curlew Sandpiper
Marsh Sandpiper, the only one seen and always towards the sun
Marsh Sandpiper
Ringed Plover a common species
Ringed plover
Oyster Catcher
Oyster Catcher
Very little of the old coastline still exists but near Dair I was able to find a few other species
SkylarkSkylark
Water Pipit
Water Pipit
Namaqua Doves
Namaqua Doves
Black-winged Stilts
Black winged stilts
on old regular seen everywhere in Bahrain the Crested Lark
Crested Lark

Permalink

2007-11-08

Permalink 08:13:59 pm, Categories: Observation by Howard  

Today I took a visiting birder Betty Power around some of Bahrains better sites, I think the hightlight was the 17 Hypocolius we saw at the Saar roost late this afternoon. Here are a few of the photos I took at Badaan farm this morning.


Mynah - did anybody bring a bucket and spade
Mynah
Cattle Egret - in a bit of a quandary
Cattle Egret
White(Pied)Wagtail
Pied Wagtail
Starling
Starling
Female Stonechat
Female Stonechat

Permalink

2007-11-06

5th November 2007

Permalink 10:51:37 am, Categories: Observation by Howard  

On my way to visit the BDF wadi near Hamad Town to check for Hypocolius (see Hypocolius page for report on that visit) - I drove the long way around via Tubli bay to check the birds out there.


Redshank
Redshank

Black-headed Gull
Black-headed Gull

Curlew
Curlew

Flamingo
Flamingo

Grey Heron
Grey Heron

Grey Heron

Grey Plover
Grey Plover

Gull-billed Tern
Gull-billed Tern

Gull-billed Tern

A mixed bag -
Gulls and Terns

SnipeSnipe

Stint and Dunlin
Stints and Dunlin

Western Reef Heron - dark morph
Western Reef Heron

Permalink

2007-11-05

4th November 2007

Permalink 12:59:09 pm, Categories: Observation by Howard  

This afternoon I was able to get a couple of hours of birding in but as it gets dark at 5pm these days I could not go far so I spent the time looking around the reclamation areas of Busaiteen a short drive from my house. Several pairs of Caspian Terns were scattered at regular intervals along the shore - they breed from October through to February in Bahrain - on the coast in any quiet corner, normally just above the tide line.


Caspian Tern

Caspian Tern

Caspian Tern

The seawall proved a good place to find Wheatears over twenty of three species were observed.
Desert Wheatear
Desert Wheatear

Desert Wheatear
Pied Wheatear
Pied Wheatear

Pied Wheatear
Isabelline Wheatear
Isabelline Wheatear
In the failing light I was able to grab a few pictures of the species encountered along the shore
Slender-billed Gull
Slender-billed Gull
Lesser Sand Plover
Lesser Sand Plover

Lesser Sand Plover

Turnstone, Plovers and Little Stint, then Lesser Crested Terns with Godwits and Curlew
Waders

terns and Waders
Dunlin
Dunlin
Finally I finished at the mud flats at the northern end of the runway at sunset - if visiting BEWARE there are stupid Military personel in the area who don't understand that people might be interested in something other than them.
Busaiteen Mud Flats

Driving back across the reclaimed areas I found some of our Yellow Legged Gulls - Cachinnans
Yellow legged Gulls complex

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2007-10-28

Saturday 27th October 2007

Permalink 10:55:00 am, Categories: Observation by Howard  

Having been away for several months I set aside today to check out what’s around and which sites still remains amongst the continuing development around Bahrain - I thought I would start with waders and shore birds so I headed across the Maharraq bridge to check the sites around the airport. Having noted that a new road that was being built to access the Amwaj Islands development in the spring I headed straight for there. The new road is now nearly complete and the new layout has left a lovely sandy tidal lagoon as a consequence. Some of the things that fly past are a little on the big size as the lagoon sits directly under the flight path at the southern end of the runway.


Building and future development as a consequence should be minimal. The site was full of waders’, terns and gulls with numbers increasing as the tide reached a peak in the early afternoon. Not the easiest place to photograph stuff without a long lens but a good place to sit and observe – in time and outside evenings when people crowd the shore this could well develop into a excellent small and accessible site. I spent so long in fact there I only had time after leaving to visit Saar and the Hypocolius roost later in the afternoon. Only one Hypocolius was observed – so the next challenge will have to be to find out where all the others go.
Bartailed Godwits

Bartailed Godwits
Bartailed Godwits
Curlew
Curlew

Dunlin

Dunlin
Dunlin

Greenshank
Greenshank
Redshank

Redshank

Grey Plover
Grey Plover

Greater Sandplover
Greater Sand Plover

Lesser Sand Plover
Lesser Sand Plover

Kentish Plover
Kentish Plover

Juvenile Western Reef Heron - are often mottled as this individual
Western Reef Heron

Western Reef Heron

The lagoon also held several hundred Saunder's Little Terns.
Saunder's Little Tern

and numerous common waders, a large flock of Slender-billed Gulls and other mixed flocks of Lesser Crested and Caspian Terns
Mixed flocks

Slender-billed Gulls
Slender-billed Gulls

Permalink

2007-10-27

First Day Back

Permalink 11:37:45 am, Categories: Observation by Howard  

I spent my first morning after my travels back at Badaan Farm with Adrian - to see his photos from the day check out

Out and About with AJ

A Marsh Harrier with its kill of a Collared Dove
.

The number of Indian Silverbills has dramatically increased and now they are more numerous than sparrows at their favourite corner

.

.

Another species that gets more numerous every year are Cattle Egret here are a few of the several hundred that now populate the farm

The glossy Ibis that has been around for a week or so

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.
The farm has a large number of juvenile migrants around amongst them this Isabelline Shrike

Around 30 Blue-cheeked Bee-eaters hawked for insects from the electrical wires

the wires are a fovourite spot for many species such as this Tree Pipit

.

.

A Kestrel

Numerous Palm Doves

and Namaqua Doves

Adrian trying to look COOL

Permalink

2007-09-20

AWAY

Permalink 04:40:20 pm, Categories: Observation by Howard  

I am still away at the moment due to return this week - however Brendan continues to ring birds in Bahrain so at the moment observations are down on our usual levels for this time of the year

This is where I am at the moment - Tenby Pembrokeshire West Wales UK


Tenby South Beach
.

.

Howard King

Permalink

2007-05-28

Houbara update

Permalink 03:20:44 pm, Categories: Observation by Howard  

The Houbara Bustard chick hatched last month at Al Areen Wildlife continues to thrive.
The significance of the successful rearing of the Houbara chick at Al Areen, the first captive breeding record for the species in Bahrain has to be viewed against the fact that the world populations for this species has dropped as much as 40% since 2005; while a further reduction of up to 50% of the current size is expected by 2006-07. Thus the subspecies macqueenii could be facing extinction within the next 15 - 25 years. (Source http://www.ameinfo.com/62663.html)

Houbara chick
Houbara Chick

Houbara chick
Houbara Chick

Houbara
Houbara Bustard

Houbara
Houbara Bustard

Permalink

2007-05-21

Flight seperation Saunders's Tern and Little Tern

Permalink 09:37:44, Categories: Observation by Howard  

Fairly easy in the summer by the checking the number of black primaries - at Dumistan lake both species can currently be found - Little are extremely agressive towards Saunders's not only over nesting Islands but also when hawking for fish along the lake margins.

Saunders's Little Tern Sterna saundersi

Saunders's Little Tern

Little Tern Sterna albifrons

Little Tern

Permalink

2007-05-19

Slowing down

Permalink 08:42:54 am, Categories: Observation by Howard  

Yesterday we only glimpsed one of the 6 Orioles seen the day before, but the roller was still around, hanging out with a male cuckoo which was constantly mobbed by everything else. Moving through: Upchers, Reed, Marsh?, and Barred Warbler were noted along with some Chiffchaff and Willow Warbler, the odd Whitethroat and Yellow Wagtail(Ssp beema some times called Sykes's Wagtail). Swifts Swallows and Martins both Sand and House were very also obvious in the early light of morning but soon moved on.

Baadan Farm
Hay making at Baadan - the seasonal tasks here are a little in front of Europe

Permalink

2007-05-18

Sandy and dull

Permalink 03:59:14, Categories: Observation by Howard  

A day out with AJ at Badaan, dull but a hot sweaty one following on from yesterdays sandstorms, the light was terrible and although we did see a lot it never really presented itself for a decent photograph. The hightlight of the morning were thr 5 or 6 Orioles that we failed to get a single shot of.

Yellow Wagtail
Yellow Wagtail

Indian Silverbills
Indian silverbills

Northern Wheatear
Northern Wheatear

Namaqua Dove

Namaqua Dove

Permalink

2007-05-14

Migration continues

Permalink 10:42:15, Categories: Observation by Howard  

The annual migration continues but is definitely slowing down. Birds observed moving through this week include Nightingales, Reed, Marsh and Garden Warblers plus a solitary Willow, Spotted Flycatchers, Red-backed, Isabelline and Great Grey Shrike,Rollers, Orioles, Beeeaters, swallows, Martins and Swifts. On the shore many of the late waders are now in full breeding plummage and include Greater and lesser Sandplover, Little Stint, Dunlin, Curlew, Wood and Green Sandpipers, Whimbrel, Curlew and Bar-tailed Godwits. Oyster Catchers are unusually numerous on the shore, as are Turnstones and Grey Plovers. Honey Buzzards are also on the move along with a few Kestrels but in the gardens it is the hieght of our breeding season with most local birds both breeding migrants and residents busy either building or tending nests. On the shore and around inland waters Little and Saunder's Terns have already chicks as do the little Grebes and Western Reef Herons. White Cheeked and Lesser Crested Terns are in residence and about to begin so despite the every increasing temperature there is still plenty of species to see. One thing about Bahrain is its size - it is small so we can get round all our habitats in a day - desert, gardens, farms, scrub, mangrove, shore and brackish water which makes for some interesting birding.

Nightjar
Nightjar

Honey Buzzard
Honey Buzzard

Photo by Juhani Kyyrö juhani.kyyro@sci.fi www.virtual-bird.com

Permalink

2007-05-09

Best of the week

Permalink 08:40:27 am, Categories: Observation by Howard  
Rock thrush
Rock Thrush (female) Monticola rufocinerea

and

in addittion a couple of nice pictures this week from the camera of Juhani Kyyrö juhani.kyyro@sci.fi

cuckoo
cuckoo Cuculus canorus

roller
Roller Coracias garrulus

Juhani Kyyrö www.virtual-bird.com

Permalink

2007-05-02

Some of the images from Birds in the nets

Permalink 08:03:43, Categories: Observation by Howard  
To see more images of birds ringed in this session April 7th to April 26th follow link to

Additional Project Photos

April 7-26 Photos right hand column

barred warbler

chiffchaff

Crested lark

graceful prinia

grasshopper warbler

great reed warbler

house sparrow

isabelline shrike

lesser whitethroat

red fody

mynah

nightingale

olivaceous warbler

palm dove

Redstart

red-throated pipit

rufous bush chat

savis warbler

sedge warbler

tree pipit

upchers warbler

white-cheeked bulbul

whitethroat

white-throated robin

willow warbler

wryneck

yellow wagtail

barbary dove

2007-05-01

Houbara Bustard - a captive breeding sucess for Al Areen

Permalink 07:01:32 pm, Categories: Observation by Howard  

On Monday I got a phone call from Essa Farraj the head of the Bird Section at Al Areen Wildlife Park to say that he had successfully hatched a Houbara Bustard chick, a first for the park, had two other eggs in incubators with another hen sitting out possible on eggs in the parks enclosed aviary. Today I was able to visit the park and see the chick myself which thankfully is putting on weight and seems to be thriving.
The park does not undertake any artificial breeding methods so Essa has had to wait eight years for birds in his captive flock to conceive and lay naturally. He was understandably very proud of his achievement so I wish him good luck with the rearing of the chick and the rest of the eggs now in his charge.
To get the pictures I had to stick my camera through a small hole in the rearing tray lid and click the shutter in anticipation

Essa Farraj

Permalink

Cattle Egret - A breeding first for Bahrain

Permalink 18:39:02, Categories: Observation by Howard  

Whilst touring the various aviaries at Al Areen Wildlife Park with Essa Farraj, the Head of the Bird Section, Essa pointed out in one of the aviaries a pair of nesting Cattle Egrets, they were housed in with the White Storks who themselves were busy nest building, incidentally almost on top of the egret nest which held to my surprise two well developed chicks. However what surprised me more was that on the outside of the aviary another pair of Cattle Egrets, migrant visitors to the park had also built a nest and raised three chicks themselves. The presence of the captive birds doing what comes naturally had obviously encouraged them to breed. One has to wonder on the tolerance of the storks in accepting the egrets into their lofty domain. I had to go around the back of the large aviary to photograph all the nesting birds as the nests are situated in the corner furthest from the road and the gaze of the bus touring visitors.

Permalink

2007-04-30

A ringers view of Bahrain

Permalink 07:25:53 am, Categories: Observation by Howard  

Juan Carlos spent three weeks in Bahrain the 7th to 27th of April 2007. Although 90% of his time was spent tending nets he did manage to spot and photograph a few other species around the Island during his visit.

le passion

Graceful Prinia
Graceful Prinia Prinia gracilis

Osprey
Osprey Pandion haliaetus

 Redstart
Redstart Phoenicurus phoenicurus

 Red-throated Pipit
Red-throated Pipit Anthus cervinus

 Palm Dove
Palm Dove Streptopelia senegalensis

 Yellow Wagtail
Yellow Wagtail Motacilla flava

 whimbrel
Curlew Numenius arquata

Collared Pratincole
Collared Pratincole Glareola pratincola

Rufous Bush Chat
Rufous Bush Chat Cercotrichas galactotes

Masked Shrike
Masked Shrike Lanius nubicus

Isabelline Shrike
Isabelline Shrike Lanius isabellinus

Red-throated Pipit
Red-throated Pipit Anthus cervinus

Ringed Plover
Ringed Plover Charadrius hiaticula

Ruddy Turnstone
Ruddy Turnstone Arenaria interpres

Little Grebe
Little Grebe Tachybaptus ruficollis

Collared Pratincole
Collared Pratincole Glareola pratincola

Great Crested Grebe
Great Crested Grebe Podiceps cristatus

mixed bag
At the chicken farm Hamalah

Snipe
Snipe Gallinago gallinago

Waders
A few waders including Terek Sandpiper Xenus cinereus

Greater Flamingo
Greater Flamingo Phoenicopterus ruber

Western Reef-Heron
Western Reef-Heron Egretta gularis

Great White Egret
Great White Egret Ardea alba

 Red Fody
Brendan with Red Fody Foudia madagascariensis

Permalink

2007-04-24

Breeding Little Tern Sterna albifrons

Permalink 14:23:10, Categories: Observation by Howard  


Little Tern Chick Sterna albifrons First proven breeding Record for Bahrain


Little Tern Sterna albifrons attendant Adult


The inland breeding site at Buhair Valley 26° 9'0.50"N 50°33'32.85"E

Kentish Plover nests & chicks are everywhere


Kentish Plover nest - note the half covered eggs


Two of a clutch of three ringed chicks found breeding at Badaan Farm

Permalink

2007-04-18

away

Permalink 10:56:12 am, Categories: Observation by Howard  

I am away in the UK at the moment will post an update on my return
me

Permalink

2007-03-25

Migration - Waiting for the rush otherwise quiet

Permalink 11:23:45, Categories: Observation by Howard  

A Spanish Sparrow was observed and photographed on 9 March 2007 at the old Rock Quarry behind Riffa Air base - (Diplomatic Wadi) this is the 3rd record for Bahrain the previous being one last November at the Riffa Golf Course but a few Kilometers from the Wadi - HMK, AJ, SC.

List of species reported as observed in Bahrain 15th to 25 March 2007

Little Grebe Tachybaptus ruficollis
Great Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo
Socotra Cormorant Phalacrocorax nigrogularis
Little Bittern Ixobrychus minutus
Black-crowned Night-Heron Nycticorax nycticorax
Squacco Heron Ardeola ralloides
Cattle Egret Bubulcus ibis
Western Reef-Heron Egretta gularis
Little Egret Egretta garzetta
Grey Heron Ardea cinerea
Purple Heron Ardea purpurea
Greater Flamingo Phoenicopterus ruber
Pallid Harrier Circus macrourus
Sparrowhawk Accipiter nisus
Spotted Eagle Aquila clanga
Kestrel Falco tinnunculus
Gray Francolin Francolinus pondicerianus
Quail Coturnix coturnix
Moorhen Gallinula chloropus
Oystercatcher Haematopus ostralegus
Black-winged Stilt Himantopus himantopus
Collared Pratincole Glareola pratincola
Little Ringed Plover Charadrius dubius
Ringed Plover Charadrius hiaticula
Kentish Plover Charadrius alexandrinus
Lesser Sandplover Charadrius mongolus
Greater Sandplover Charadrius leschenaultii
Pacific Golden-Plover Pluvialis fulva
Golden-Plover Pluvialis apricaria
Grey Plover Pluvialis squatarola
Little Stint alidris minuta
Temminck's Stint Calidris temminckii
Curlew Sandpiper Calidris ferruginea
Dunlin Calidris alpina
Broad-billed Sandpiper Limicola falcinellus
Ruff Philomachus pugnax
Jack Snipe Lymnocryptes minimus
Pintail Snipe Gallinago stenura
Snipe Gallinago gallinago
Bar-tailed Godwit Limosa lapponica
Whimbrel Numenius phaeopus
Curlew Numenius arquata
Redshank Tringa totanus
Greenshank Tringa nebularia
Green Sandpiper Tringa ochropus
Terek Sandpiper Xenus cinereus
Common Sandpiper Actitis hypoleucos
Ruddy Turnstone Arenaria interpres
Black-headed Gull Larus ridibundus
Slender-billed Gull Larus genei
Lesser Black-backed Gull Larus fuscus
Yellow-legged Gull Larus cachinnans - barabensis
Heuglin's Gull Larus heuglini - taimyrrensis
Armenian Gull Larus armenicus
Gull-billed Tern Sterna nilotica
Caspian Tern Sterna caspia
Lesser Crested Tern Sterna bengalensis
Saunders's Little Tern Sterna saundersi
Rock Pigeon Columba livia
Stock Pigeon Columba oenas
Collared-Dove Streptopelia decaocto
Palm Dove Streptopelia senegalensis
Alexandrine Parakeet Psittacula eupatria
Rose-ringed Parakeet Psittacula krameri
Cuckoo Cuculus canorus
Common Swift Apus apus
Pallid Swift Apus pallidus
Kingfisher Alcedo atthis
European Bee-eater Merops apiaster
Hoopoe Upupa epops
Desert Lark Ammomanes deserti
Crested Lark Galerida cristata
Sky Lark Alauda arvensis
Swallow Hirundo rustica
Red-rumped Swallow Cecropis daurica
House-Martin Delichon urbica
Richard's Pipit Anthus richardi
Tawny Pipit Anthus campestris
Tree Pipit Anthus trivialis
Red-throated Pipit Anthus cervinus
Water Pipit Anthus spinoletta
Yellow Wagtail Motacilla flava
Citrine Wagtail Motacilla citreola
Grey Wagtail Motacilla cinerea
Pied Wagtail Motacilla alba
Hypocolius Hypocolius ampelinus
White-cheeked Bulbul Pycnonotus leucogenys
Red-vented Bulbul Pycnonotus cafer
Rufous Bush Chat Cercotrichas galactotes
Bluethroat Luscinia svecica
Redstart Phoenicurus phoenicurus
European Stonechat Saxicola rubicola
Isabelline Wheatear Oenanthe isabellina
Wheatear Oenanthe oenanthe
Pied Wheatear Oenanthe pleschanka
Black-eared Wheatear Oenanthe hispanica
Desert Wheatear Oenanthe deserti
Red-tailed Wheatear Oenanthe xanthoprymna
Mourning Wheatear Oenanthe lugens
Rock-Thrush Monticola saxatilis
Blue Rock-Thrush Monticola solitarius
Song Thrush Turdus philomelos
Graceful Prinia Prinia gracilis
Marsh Warbler Acrocephalus palustris or Reed-Warbler Acrocephalus scirpaceus
Upcher’s Warbler Hippolais languida
Desert Warbler Sylvia nana
Lesser Whitethroat Sylvia curruca
Chiffchaff Phylloscopus collybita or Willow Warbler Phylloscopus trochilus
Isabelline Shrike Lanius isabellinus
Red-backed Shrike Lanius collurio
Great (Southern & Steppe) Grey Shrike Lanius excubitor
Woodchat Shrike Lanius senator
Masked Shrike Lanius nubicus
Indian House Crow Corvus splendens
Common Myna Acridotheres tristis
House Sparrow Passer domesticus
Spanish Sparrow Passer hispaniolensis
Indian Silverbill Lonchura malabarica

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2007-03-19

Local news March 9th

Permalink 08:45:19, Categories: Observation by Howard  

While out visiting the Hypocolius Roost at Saar we came across some local lads out with their Lanner Falcon - The forty or so Hypocolius that arrived that evening were not in any way disturbed by the Falcons presence. The lads were truly amazed by the Hypocolius a species they were completely unaware of.

lanner falcon

lanner falcon

lanner falcon

lanner falcon

lanner falcon

lanner falcon

lanner falcon

lanner falcon

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2007-03-05

Badaan Farm Saturday 3rd March

Permalink 13:11:18, Categories: Observation by Howard  

After a small break in visiting Badaan Farm Brendan, Jahani and myself spent a pleasant but blustery morning at the Farm. Friday had been a complete waste of time as a dust storm had settled over the island reducing visibility to a matter of metres so the farm was a refreshing change. It is such a pleasure to bird there; it really is a different world in comparison to the rest of the Island. Jahani was suffering withdrawal symptoms from not having photographed anything decent recently so he was happy -
blue rock thrush
Bluerock thrush

feldegg
Yellow Wagtail - ssp Feldegg

starling
Starling

kestrel
Kestrel

what you looking at
Crested lark

pacific golden plover
Pacific Golden Plover

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2007-02-15

Birds in my garden Feb 14th 2007

Permalink 06:55:59, Categories: Observation by Howard  

Although I live in the middle of Manama I have recorded over eighty species from my Garden (I count fly over as well), the garden is fortunately large, I maintain it in a state of clean chaos; that is heavily overgrown and unkempt, it has a great mix of native fruiting trees and once I repair the leeking pond permanent water.
Common Myna
Common Myna Acridotheres tristis In the UK you have chickens to wake you - in the morning here its Myna's particularily as nesting season is now in full swing for many of our local garden Birds.

Rose-ringed Parakeet
Rose-ringed Parakeet Psittacula krameri

White-cheeked Bulbul Pycnonotus leucogenys and Red-vented Bulbul Pycnonotus cafer happily co-exist, the Red-vented nests in a nearby lamp post while the Whitecheeked of which I have at least 3 pairs nests in my thick hedges and shrubs.
bulbuls

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2007-02-09

Day Twitch

Permalink 07:03:18 pm, Categories: Observation by Howard  

Andy you did miss out Lapwing which we saw at Hamalah thus day total was 83
------------------------------------------------

Here is the list of 82 birds that we saw. 05/02/2007

Andy shell
now back in kuwait

1. Little Grebe
2. Black-necked Grebe
3. Great Cormorant
4. Socotra Cormorant
5. Black-crowned Night Heron
6. Cattle Egret
7. Western Reef-Heron
8. Little Egret
9. Grey Heron
10. Purple Heron
11. Greater Flamingo
12. Wigeon
13. Gadwall
14. Teal
15. Pintail
16. Northern Shoveler
17. Red-crested Pochard
18. Pochard
19. Gray Francolin
20. Moorhen
21. Coot
22. Oystercatcher
23. Black-winged Stilt
24. Kentish Plover
25. Greater Sandplover
26. Grey Plover
27. Sanderling
28. Little Stint
29. Temminick’s Stint
30. Curlew Sandpiper
31. Dunlin
32. Pintail Snipe
33. Snipe
34. Bar-tailed Godwit
35. Curlew
36. Redshank
37. Marsh Sandpiper
38. Greenshank
39. Green Sandpiper
40. Wood Sandpiper
41. Ruddy Turnstone
42. Great-Black-headed Gull
43. Slender-billed Gull
44. Lesser Black-backed Gull
45. Yellow-legged Gull
46. Heuglin’s Gull
47. Armenian Gull
48. Gull-billed Tern
49. Caspian Tern
50. Lesser Crested Tern
51. Sandwich Tern
52. Little Tern
53. White-winged Black Tern
54. Collared-Dove
55. Palm Dove
56. Pallied Swift
57. Desert Lark
58. Crested Lark
59. Sky Lark
60. Oriental Sky-Lark
61. Barn Swallow
62. Richard’s Pipit
63. Tawny Pipit
64. Red-throated Pipit
65. Water Pipit
66. White Wagtail
67. Hypocolius
68. White-Cheeked Bulbul
69. Isabelline Wheatear
70. Desert Wheatear
71. Red-tailed Wheatear
72. Mourning Whatear
73. Song Thrush
74. Graceful Warbler
75. Desert Warbler
76. Lesser Whitethroat
77. Chiffchaff
78. Isabelline Shrike
79. Woodchat Shrike
80. Indian House Crow
81. Common Myna
82. House Sparrow

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2007-02-06

Field observations Jan 6 th to Feb 6 th 2007

Permalink 10:15:45, Categories: Observation by Howard  


I am in the process of cataloguing all species kept in collections in Bahrain particularily those that have resulted in escapes and feral breeding species in the past -

The following is however a list of species recorded in the field over the last 4 weeks

Little Grebe Tachybaptus ruficollis
Black- necked Grebe Podiceps nigricollis
Great Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo
Socotra Cormorant Phalacrocorax nigrogularis
Little Bittern Ixobrychus minutus
Black-crowned Night Heron Nycticorax nycticorax
Squacco Heron Ardeola ralloides
Cattle Egret Bubulcus ibis
Western Reef Heron Egretta gularis
Little Egret Egretta garzetta
Grey Heron Ardea cinerea
Purple Heron Ardea purpurea
Greater Flamingo Phoenicopterus ruber
Wigeon Anas penelope
Gadwall Anas strepera
Teal Anas crecca
Mallard Anas platyrhynchos
Pintail Anas acuta
Shoveler Anas clypeata
Pochard Aythya ferina
Sparrowhawk Accipiter nisus
Osprey Pandion haliaetus
Kestrel Falco tinnunculus
Chukar Alectoris chukar
Gray Francolin Francolinus pondicerianus
Quail Coturnix coturnix
Water Rail Rallus aquaticus
Moorhen Gallinula chloropus
Coot Fulica atra
Houbara Bustard Chlamydotis undulata
Oystercatcher Haematopus ostralegus
Black-winged Stilt Himantopus himantopus
Stone Curlew Burhinus oedicnemus
Little Ringed Plover Charadrius dubius
Ringed Plover Charadrius hiaticula
Kentish Plover Charadrius alexandrinus
Lesser Sandplover Charadrius mongolus
Greater Sandplover Charadrius leschenaultii
Pacific Golden Plover Pluvialis fulva
Grey Plover Pluvialis squatarola
Lapwing Vanellus vanellus
Sanderling Calidris alba
Little Stint Calidris minuta
Temminck's Stint Calidris temminckii
Curlew Sandpiper Calidris ferruginea
Dunlin Calidris alpina
Broad-billed Sandpiper Limicola falcinellus
Ruff Philomachus pugnax
Pintail Snipe Gallinago stenura
Snipe Gallinago gallinago
Bar-tailed Godwit Limosa lapponica
Whimbrel Numenius phaeopus
Curlew Numenius arquata
Redshank Tringa totanus
Marsh Sandpiper Tringa stagnatilis
Greenshank Tringa nebularia
Green Sandpiper Tringa ochropus
Wood Sandpiper Tringa glareola
Terek Sandpiper Xenus cinereus
Common Sandpiper Actitis hypoleucos
Ruddy Turnstone Arenaria interpres
Great Black-headed Gull Larus ichthyaetus
Black-headed Gull Larus ridibundus
Slender-billed Gull Larus genei
Lesser Black-backed Gull Larus fuscus
Yellow-legged Gull Larus cachinnans barabensis
Heuglin's Gull Larus heuglini taimyrrensis
Armenian Gull Larus armenicus
Gull-billed Tern Sterna nilotica
Caspian Tern Sterna caspia
Lesser Crested Tern Sterna bengalensis
Sandwich Tern Sterna sandvicensis
Common Tern Sterna hirundo
Saunders's Little Tern Sterna saundersi
Whiskered Tern Chlidonias hybridus
White-winged Black Tern Chlidonias leucopterus
Rock Pigeon Columba livia
Stock Pigeon Columba oenas
Collared Dove Streptopelia decaocto
Palm Dove Streptopelia senegalensis
Namaqua Dove Oena capensis
Alexandrine Parakeet Psittacula eupatria
Rose-ringed Parakeet Psittacula krameri
Barn Owl Tyto alba
Pallid Swift Apus pallidus
Kingfisher Alcedo atthis
Desert Lark Ammomanes deserti
Hoopoe Lark Alaemon alaudipes
Lesser Short-toed Lark Calandrella rufescens
Crested Lark Galerida cristata
Sky Lark Alauda arvensis
Oriental Skylark Alauda gulgula
Swallow Hirundo rustica
Richard's Pipit Anthus richardi
Tawny Pipit Anthus campestris
Tree Pipit Anthus trivialis
Red throated Pipit Anthus cervinus
Water Pipit Anthus spinoletta
Citrine Wagtail Motacilla citreola
Grey Wagtail Motacilla cinerea
Pied Wagtail Motacilla alba
Hypocolius Hypocolius ampelinus
White-cheeked Bulbul Pycnonotus leucogenys
Red-vented Bulbul Pycnonotus cafer
Bluethroat Luscinia svecica
Redstart Phoenicurus phoenicurus
Whinchat Saxicola rubetra
Stonechat Saxicola rubicola
Isabelline Wheatear Oenanthe isabellina
Wheatear Oenanthe oenanthe
Desert Wheatear Oenanthe deserti
Red tailed Wheatear Oenanthe xanthoprymna
Mourning Wheatear Oenanthe lugens
Blue Rock Thrush Monticola solitarius
Song Thrush Turdus philomelos
Graceful Prinia Prinia gracilis
Desert Warbler Sylvia nana
Lesser Whitethroat Sylvia curruca
Small (Desert) Whitethroat Sylvia minula
Blackcap Sylvia atricapilla
Chiffchaff Phylloscopus collybita
Isabelline Shrike Lanius isabellinus
Great (Southern & Steppe) Grey Shrike Lanius excubitor
Woodchat Shrike Lanius senator
Masked Shrike Lanius nubicus
Indian House Crow Corvus splendens
Starling Sturnus vulgaris
Common Myna Acridotheres tristis
House Sparrow Passer domesticus
Red Avadavat Amandava amandava
Indian Silverbill Euodice

Permalink

2007-02-04

Friday - out and about with AJ

Permalink 11:41:02, Categories: Observation by Howard  

A muddy day spent chasing the gaps in the cloud accompanied by Ben Martin from Chicago whom we managed to pair up with three Hypocolius at the BDF wadi ALL ably chauffeured by AJ. He lent me these pics as I forgot to recharge my batteries.
blackwinged stilt
Synchronised Black-winged Stilts in flight

water pipit

Water Pipit in full moult.

Permalink

2007-02-02

Rain, overcast and bad light yet again

Permalink 07:07:46 am, Categories: Observation by Howard  

Weekends for Saudi are Thursday/Friday - here in Bahrain Friday/Saturday - confused; so are we. But what it means is that AJ often comes over on thursday and if I'm not committed we spend the day looking for photographic opportunities, which was the case yesterday. What we didn't expect however was a dull, overcast day with further rain, especially as we have already had more than our usual share for the winter but this is exactly what we had this thursday. Finding our wintering species was not the problem but getting close enough to maximise the light was a real problem. Wait until he gets closer then we can fly to the rock over there behind him
AJ lent me his 200mm vibration compensated lens so while he was closing down on the birds I snapped this distant shot - Red-tailed & Mourning Wheatear with Blue Rock Thrush on the Jebel Dukhan. The Mourning's and Blue Rock Thrush soon moved of but the Redtailed Wheatear held his ground to enable AJ to get a shot in (see his pages on his next update)

Night Herons
Having already spotted a flock of 23 Night Herons the evening before close to Asry Shipyards; they were in reeds surrounding a pool of brackish water left behind amonst the reclamation areas for the new port. we finished our day in the gloom trying to get some shots of the birds moving off to feed in the late afternoon.

Night Herons
Before flying off the coast some of the Night Herons joined the Black-winged Stilts, Gulls and Marsh Sandpiers out in the pool.

warbler
Before being totally defeated by the failing light we did find some Warblers - This one, you will have to take my word for it, was a Lesser Whitethroat.

Permalink

2007-01-19

Juhani Kyyro and Brendan Kavanagh

Permalink 18:35:31, Categories: Observation by Howard  

hold it still........hurry up

In a world of their own

in the hand
while they were setting up for a classic image I clicked this one of the bird

Permalink

2007-01-12

First day out this year

Permalink 08:18:16 pm, Categories: Observation by Howard  

Brendan and I spent a pleasant few hours checking out potential ringing sites around the northern part of Bahrain to see how the recent rains have affected wintering birds - not a great deal to report in terms of variety of species seen but we did note large numbers of Skylarks and Pipits at several previously seldom visited sites making them worthy of future visits.

Masked Shrike
Masked Shrike - Lanius nubicus - Badaan Farm

Species seen today
Little Grebe - - -Tachybaptus ruficollis
Cattle Egret - - -Bubulcus ibis
Western Reef Heron - - -Egretta gularis
Little Egret - - -Egretta garzetta
Grey Heron - - -Ardea cinerea
Teal - - -Anas crecca
Kestrel - - -Falco tinnunculus
Gray Francolin - - -Francolinus pondicerianus
Moorhen - - -Gallinula chloropus
Black-winged Stilt - - -Himantopus himantopus
Ringed Plover - - -Charadrius hiaticula
Kentish Plover - - -Charadrius alexandrinus
Pacific Golden Plover - - -Pluvialis fulva
Grey Plover - - -Pluvialis squatarola
Lapwing - - -Vanellus vanellus
Little Stint - - -Calidris minuta
Curlew Sandpiper - - -Calidris ferruginea
Common Snipe - - -Gallinago gallinago
Pintail Snipe - - -Gallinago stenura
Curlew - - -Numenius arquata
Redshank - - -Tringa tetanus
Green Shank - - -Tringa nubularia
Green Sandpiper - - -Tringa ochropus
Common Sandpiper - - -Actitis hypoleucos
Ruddy Turnstone - - -Arenaria interpres
Black-headed Gull - - -Larus ridibundus
Slender-billed Gull - - -Larus genei
Stock Pigeon - - -Columba oenas
Collared Dove - - -Streptopelia decaocto
Palm Dove - - -Streptopelia senegalensis
Alexandrine Parakeet - - -Psittacula eupatria
Rose-ringed Parakeet - - -Psittacula krameri
Crested Lark - - -Galerida cristata
Sky Lark - - -Alauda arvensis
Oriental Skylark - - -Alauda gulgula
Richard's Pipit - - -Anthus richardi
Tawny Pipit - - -Anthus campestris
Meadow Pipit - - -Anthus pratensis
Red-throated Pipit - - -Anthus cervinus
Water Pipit - - -Anthus spinoletta
White Wagtail - - -Motacilla alba
Bluethroat - - -Luscinia svecica
White-cheeked Bulbul - - -Pycnonotus leucogenys
European Stonechat - - -Saxicola rubicola
Isabelline Wheatear - - -Oenanthe isabellina
Desert Wheatear - - -Oenanthe deserti
Graceful Prinia - - -Prinia gracilis
Isabelline Shrike - - -Lanius isabellinus
Masked Shrike - - -Lanius nubicus
Indian House Crow - - -Corvus splendens
Common Mynah - - - Acridotheres tristis
House Sparrow - - -Passer domesticus

Permalink

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