Archives for: December 2007


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

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




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



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.


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

singing camels



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

Dunlin Calidris alpina

Greenshank Tringa nebularia

Grey Plover Pluvialis squatarola
Grey Plover

Ruddy Turnstone Arenaria interpres

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




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

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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