Bahrain Bird Report

Egyptian Goose Grey Headed Gull
Indicator species Hawar
Mystery Gull

These bird was found and photographed near Hidd, Bahrain August 4 - 6th 2005 by local birder Juhani Kyyrö 
The site in question is a small reed lined pond, amonst the extensive coastal land reclaimation that is the newly created Hidd Industrial area. The pond is currently one of only a few places in the area that provides a summer supply of fresh or brackish water. However it is also situated near a large pig iron smelter that belches out prodegous quantaties of  ferrous oxide dust, the pond itself is not polluted and has a healthy resident population of birds but it also attracts birds resident in the smelter to drink. It is now thought that the color of these individuals is as a consequence of that pollution.
Just how the birds are contaminated, be it through the food chain, in dust baths, in a water souce, is not known but it has added a flash of color to two of the most commonly seen species in Bahrain. We would be interested to know from anyone how the health of the birds might be affected. It is known that iron dust in a marine environment can be benificial to the food chain.

Collared Dove
Streptopelia decaocto

 Comments welcome to

House Sparrow
Passer domesticus

The offending smelter