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Bahrain Bird Report Bahrain Birding in Kuwait


The Kuwait

 

Bird Report

 

2005

 

Compiled by Brian Foster 2006 Kuwait

 

THE YEAR 2005

 

George Gregory, who was instrumental in setting up BMAPT and had been actively birding in Kuwait for 14 years, left Kuwait in April 2005. His contribution to bird recording in Kuwait is immeasurable and the publication of his new book, The Birds of the State of Kuwait, is testimony to the work he has done. It is the definitive publication on the status and records of birds in Kuwait. This book has been used as the reference to assess the status of birds in this report and the number of previous records of vagrants seen in 2005. George will be returning to Kuwait in November 2006 on a six month contract with the Voluntary Work Centre.

 

Two other resident birders, Andrew Bailey and Pekka Fagel, left Kuwait in July 2005, although Pekka Fagel returned on business on regular occasions and found plenty of time for birding.

 

The Voluntary Work Center took over management and development of the Nature Reserve at Sulaibikhat Bay and the Sabah Al-Ahmed Natural Reserve (SAANR).

 

The Voluntary Work Centre also organized a visit to Kubbar Island in June with about 45 participants to clear rubbish and erect conservation signs.

 

The Kuwait Ornithological Rarities Committee (KORC) was re-established, the members being Peter Cowan, Brian Foster, George Gregory and Thomas Spencer.

 

The bird records of the late Charles W.T. Pilcher, including a disc of computer records, were found and are being explored by Peter Cowan and Thomas Spencer.

 

A number of important breeding records were submitted to the Atlas of Breeding Birds of Arabia (ABBA).

 

Four new species for Kuwait were seen in 2005: Arctic Tern, Black Tern, Buff-bellied Pipit and Grey-necked Bunting, plus a Long-tailed Shrike for 2004

 

After good winter rains there was considerable regeneration of plant and animal life in the Sabah Al-Ahmed Natural Reserve, Sulaibikhat Nature Reserve, Jahra Pool Reserve and most of the oilfields, because fencing prevented overgrazing. This resulted in an increase in bird life in all of these places.

 

A study of spring migration through Tulha in the SAANR was carried out by Brian Foster and Pekka Fagel every weekend from 23 March 2005 to 2 June 2005.

 

Several visiting birders contributed to the bird records for 2005.

 

The Annual Report 2004 was published and printed copies were distributed in Kuwait and the United Kingdom.

 

Status reference, given after the scientific name, for each species recorded in 2005

 

Abundant: occurs annually in very large numbers (10,000+)

Very Common: occurs annually in large numbers (1,000 - 9,999)

Common: occurs annually in moderate numbers (100 - 999)

Uncommon: occurs annually in small numbers (10 - 99)

Scarce: occurs annually in very small numbers (1 - 9)

Rare: does not occur annually but has occurred more than 10 times in total

Vagrant: has occurred less than 10 times in total

Irregular: occurs, not necessarily every year, in very variable numbers

Migrant: passage through Kuwait in spring and autumn

Winter: present in Kuwait from November 1st to February 28th

Resident: present in Kuwait all year

Breeds: breeds every year or most years

Has Bred: breeding proved in the past but not recently

 

The 2005 report contains a full list of all species seen in Kuwait and their status.

 

Contributing Observers during 2005

 

Kuwait-based for all or part of the year

Khalid Al-Nasrallah   KA-N

Abdullah Al-Fadhel   AA-F                                 

Khalid Al-Ghanim   KA-G                                            

Misha´l Al-Jeriwi      MA-J                                              

Hussain Al-Qallaf   HA-Q                                               

Musaad Al-Saleh   MA-S                                               

Abdulrahman Al-Sirhan  AA-S

Abdulmuhsen Al-Suraye  AbA-S                                       

Andrew Bailey   AB

Pekka Fagel   PF                                                   

Brian Foster   BF

George Gregory   GG

Mike Ling   ML

Rosemary Ling   RL

Eisa Ramadan   ER

Mahmoud Shihab   MS

 

Visitors

Charlie Moores  CM

Werner Muller  WM

Mike Newey   MN                                                       

Clive Templar  CT

Jorma Tenovuo  JT

Markku Varhimo   MV

 

Initials are given for the observers of all vagrant and rare species, and also for most of the breeding records and highest daily counts for 2005.

 

Selected records of all species recorded during 2005

 

Greater White-fronted Goose (Anser albifrons) Vagrant 

Three flying over Ras Subiya on 5.2.2005 (GG), with all diagnostic features observed, was the first confirmed record of live birds for Kuwait. In the past hunters have apparently shot and identified this species.

 

Ruddy Shelduck (Tadorna ferruginea) Rare migrant and winter visitor

This was an exceptional year for this species. One seen from Sulaibikhat Nature Reserve on 28.1.2005 (PF, BF) and a different bird at South Doha on this date and 29.1.2005 (WM). Three birds were present at East Doha from 3.3.2005 to 17.3.2005 (PF,BF) and probably the same three birds at Jahra East Outfall on 31.3.2005, two remaining on 4.4.2006 and one on 6.5.2005. One was again at Jahra East Outfall on 11.7.2005 (A.A-S). This made a probable total of 6 different birds seen.

 

Common Shelduck (Tadorna tadorna)  Common migrant and winter visitor

Early year maximum 120 at Sulaibikhat Bay on 28.1.2005 (WM). Late year maximum 116 at Sulaibikhat Bay from the Nature Reserve on 20.12.2005 (HA-Q). This flock remained into 2006. One on the shore at East Doha on 23.6.2005 was on an unusually late date.

 

Eurasian Wigeon (Anas penelope)  Uncommon migrant and winter visitor

Wintered in small numbers. Maximum 12 at Jahra East Outfall on 29.1.2005.

 

Gadwall  (Anas strepera)  Uncommon migrant and scare winter visitor

No spring records. The only autumn record was 2 at Sabah Al-Salem pool on 23.9.2005 (BF, ML, RL).

 

Teal (Anas crecca)  Common winter visitor

Wintered in small numbers at South Doha and Sabah Al-Salem pools and at several coastal sites. Maximum 156 at Doha Power Station warm water outflow at North Doha on 17.12.2005 (BF).

 

Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos)  Common winter visitor

Wintered in small numbers at several coastal sites. Maximum 28 at Doha Power Station warm water outflow at North Doha on 2.12.2005 (PF, BF).

 

Garganey (Anas querquedula) Uncommon migrant

Observed at several wetland sites on passage. Spring maximum 7 (4 males + 3 females) at Sabah Al-Salem pool on 24.5.2005 (BF). Autumn maximum 6 at Sabah Al-Salem pool on 23.9.2005(BF, ML, RL).

 

Northern Pintail (Anas acuta)  Uncommon migrant and winter visitor

Wintered in small numbers. Maximum 9 (4m + 5f) at Sabah Al-Salem pool on 19.1.2005 (BF). Smaller numbers were observed at this site on several other dates and on the sea at Jahra East Outfall where there were 7 on 10.5.2005.

 

Northern Shoveler (Anas clypeata) Uncommon migrant and winter visitor

Wintered in moderate numbers. Maximum 104 at Doha Power Station warm water outflow at North Doha on 4.2.2005 (PF, BF, GG).

 

Common Pochard (Aythya farina) Rare migrant and winter visitor

A pair at Doha South pools from 28.11.2005 to 1.12.2005 (PF, BF) was the only record.

 

Ferruginous Duck (Aythya nyroca) Vagrant

Three birds at Jahra East Outfall on 26.6.2005 (AA-S) and independently a single bird was also found at Jahra East Outfall on 30.6.2005, with all identification features noted by AB. The second record for Kuwait.

 

Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligata) Rare migrant and winter visitor

A drake seen associating with the pair of Pochard at Doha South pools from 28.11 to 1.12.2005 (PF, BF) was the only record.

 

Common Quail (Coturnix coturnix) Common migrant; has bred

Regular sighting of flushed birds during both spring and autumn migration. One was singing at Kabd on 17.3.2005 (GG) but breeding was not confirmed.

 

Little Grebe (Tachybaptus ruficollis) Uncommon migrant and winter visitor

Wintered at South Doha pools with a maximum 5 present on 2.12.2005 (PF, BF).

 

Great Crested Grebe (Podiceps cristatus) Rare migrant and winter visitor

One at Sabah Al-Salem pool on 14.7.2005 (HA-Q) was the only record.

 

Black-necked Grebe (Podiceps auritus) Uncommon migrant and winter visitor

Two in breeding plumage off Pipeline Beach on 16.3.2005. One at South Doha on 8.10.2005. Highest count of 3 present at South Doha pools throughout December 2005 (PF, BF).

 

Great Cormorant (Phalacrocorax carbo) Very common winter visitor

A large flock wintered in Sulaibikhat Bay reaching a maximum 5000 on 17.12.2005 (BF), the highest ever daily count for Kuwait.

 

White Pelican (Pelecanus onocratalus) Rare disperser; has bred

One flew over East Doha on 28.1.2005 (PF, BF) and a single bird was present at Jahra East Outfall from 17.6.2005 to 16.9.2005 (AA-S, PF, BF).

 

Dalmatian Pelican (Pelecanus crispus) Vagrant

One found dead at Jahra East Outfall on 6.3.2005 (GG) is the fifth record.  Although it was probably shot at this site it may have been washed in on the high tide from elsewhere.

 

Great Bittern (Botaurus stellaris) Scarce migrant and winter visitor

The only record this year was of a single bird that flew over and into the reed bed at Sewer Plant Reeds on 7.4.2005. It was seen by two of the three observers present (PF, MV) much to the annoyance of BF who missed it.

 

Little Bittern (Ixobrychus minutus) Uncommon migrant and scarce breeder

Present on passage at most reed bed sites. One was also seen at the Tulha drinking pool in the SAANR on 27.5.2005. Maximum daily count of 9 birds at South Doha on 12.5.2005 (PF) and regularly calling there. Confirmed breeding at a reed-fringed pool at Wafra Farms with 2 adults and 2 juveniles present on 21.6.2005 (BF).

 

Black-crowned Night Heron (Nycticorax nycticorax) Scarce migrant; has bred

Singles usually of immature birds were seen at several wetland sites. An adult in reeds on 23.6.2005 at South Doha pits was a possible breeder.

 

Squacco Heron (Ardeola ralloides) Uncommon migrant; possible breeder

Present at most wetland sites on passage. The earliest spring record was on 24.2.2005 with 2 at East Doha and 3 at Sabah Al-Salem (GG, CM). Maximum daily count 11 at Sabah Al-Salem. Breeding not confirmed this year.

 

Cattle Egret (Bubulcus ibis) Uncommon disperser in autumn, winter and spring

Small numbers were seen at many sites in winter. Maximum 17 at Jahra Farms on 7.1.2005 (GG).

 

Western Reef Egret (Egretta gularis) Very common resident; breeds

Commonly seen at most coastal sites with the highest counts in winter. Twenty pairs observed nesting on Bubiyan Island on 28.4.2005, with eggs and pulli observed (PF, BF).

 

Little Egret (Egretta garzetta) Uncommon migrant and winter visitor

Observed in small numbers on most visits to Jahra East Outfall and South Doha.

 

Great Egret (Egretta albus) Uncommon migrant and winter visitor

Maximum 7 at Jahra East Outfall on 4.2.2005 (PF, BF, GG) and regularly observed there.

 

Grey Heron (Ardea cinerea) Common resident; breeds

Observed nesting on Bubiyan Island on 28.4.2005, with pulli seen (PF, BF). Maximum in the high tide roost at the Sulaibikhat Nature Reserve was 221 on 10.3.2005. One leucistic bird was present there on 8.12.2005.

 

Purple Heron (Ardea purpurea) Uncommon migrant and rare winter visitor

Single birds were seen at several wetland sites in spring and autumn. Maximum 3 at Sabriya Farm on 19.3.2005 (GG) and 3 at Sabah Al-Salem on 26.3.2005 (BF). One was present in winter at Jahra East Outfall on 8.11.2005.

 

Black Stork (Ciconia nigra) Vagrant

One flew over Jahra East Outfall on 25.10.2005 (AA-S). It was photographed and is the fourth record for Kuwait.

 

White Stork (Ciconia ciconia) Rare migrant

This has been a good year for records of this species. 19 were seen during spring migration roosting on a long irrigation arm at Kabd on 14/15.3.2005 (GG). During autumn passage 14 landed at Jahra East Outfall for about 15 minutes before circling and flying off high south on 15.9.2005 (PF, BF). The next day, 16.9.2005,  AA-S observed 19 birds again at Jahra East. Possibly these were the same 14 with 5 additions or a completely new flock of passage migrants?

 

Glossy Ibis (Plegadis falcinellus) Uncommon migrant

Several sightings were made at Jahra East Outfall, Sabah Al-Salem and Doha East in spring. Highest count was 23 on 17.3.2005 at Jahra East Outfall (PF, BF, GG). Unusual winter records were of two at Jahra East Outfall on 30 and 31.1.2005 (WM) and one at Jahra East Outfall on 11.12.2005 (AA-S).

                                                                               

Eurasian Spoonbill (Platalea leucorodia) Uncommon resident; breeds

Two pairs observed nesting on Bubiyan Island on 28.4.2005 (PF, BF).

 

Greater Flamingo (Phoenicopterus roseus) Very common winter visitor

Maximum 2346 wintering in Sulaibikhat Bay on 17.12.2005 (BF). A small summering flock of 23 birds at Doha East contained 6 adults and 17 first summer birds on several dates from 20.4.2005 to 21.6.2005.

 

European Honey Buzzard (Pernis apivorus) Scarce migrant

Singles over Sabriya Farm on 28.4.2005, Tulha on 6.5.2005, Jahra East Outfall on 12.5.2005 and the Sabah Al-Ahmed Natural Reserve (SAANR) on 13.9.2005 were the only records.

 

Crested Honey Buzzard (Pernis ptilorhynchus) Scarce migrant

One found long dead at Al-Abraq Al-Khabari on 7.1.2005 (GG) was probably shot during the autumn 2004 migration.

                                                          

Black Kite (Milvus migrans) Common migrant and winter visitor

Regular on passage at most sites and in winter at sites nearer the city. The highest winter count was 60 at Amghara rubbish tip on 10.2.2005 (PF).

 

Egyptian Vulture (Neophron percnopterus) Scarce migrant

In spring an adult flew over Jahra East Outfall on 6.4.2005 (PF, MV).

 

Eurasian Black Vulture (Aegypius monachus) Rare disperser

One present in the SAANR on 14 and 15.3.2005 (MA-J) was photographed.

 

Short-toed Eagle (Circaetus gallicus) Uncommon migrant; rare winter visitor

Seen on several dates during spring and autumn passage. One at South Doha on 28.1.2005 (WM) and one at Jahra Pool Reserve on 27.2.2005 were probably over-wintering. Maximum 3 in the SAANR on 8.4.2005 (PF, BF, MV).

 

Western Marsh Harrier (Circus aeruginosus) Uncommon migrant and winter

Observed regularly on passage and in winter at wetland sites such Jahra East Outfall. Usually one or two birds, the vast majority being females/immatures. The maximum count was of 5 at Jahra East Outfall on 9.10.2005 (AA-S).

 

Hen Harrier (Circus cyaneus) Rare migrant

Two ringtails from the Failaka ferry on 5.4.2005 (PF, MV) were the only record this year.

 

Pallid Harrier (Circus macrourus) Common migrant

The most numerous harrier species during passage migration and seen on most days birding at this time of year. The earliest spring record was in the SAANR on 10.3.2005. Highest daily count was 10 in the SAANR on the 8.4.2005 (PF, BF). 

 

Montagu's Harrier (Circus pygargus) Uncommon migrant

A male flying over the SAANR on the 29.4.2005 (PF, BF) was the only confirmed sighting this year. Several distant ringtails could not be identified to a particular species.

 

Eurasian Sparrowhawk (Accipiter nisus) Common migrant; uncommon in winter

A commonly observed passage migrant this year, usually single birds. Highest count of 6 at Al-Abraq Al-Khabari on 14.10.2005 (PF, BF).                                                                 

 

Shikra (Accipiter badius) Scarce migrant and winter visitor

One was in the Sulaibikhat Nature Reserve on 4.4.2005 (GG). A juvenile was at Al-Abraq Al-Khabari on 14.10.2005 and was still present on 20.10.2005 (PF, BF). Both observers were unsure of its identification as it seemed rather large for Shikra but the identification was confirmed via email by Dick Forsman from a photograph taken by PF. The Iranian race A. b. cenchroides, probably the most likely to be seen in Kuwait, is larger than races found elsewhere.

 

Levant Sparrowhawk (Accipiter brevipes) Rare migrant and winter visitor

An adult male at Al-Abraq Al-Khabari on 14.10.2005 (PF, BF) was the only record.

 

Common Buzzard (Buteo buteo) Common migrant; scarce winter visitor

The race B. b. vulpinus (Steppe Buzzard) was observed in small numbers during both spring and autumn passage at several sites with a maximum count of 4 at Al-Abraq Al-Khabari on 14.10.2005 (PF, BF).

 

Long-legged Buzzard (Buteo rufinus) Scarce migrant; uncommon winter visitor

Singles were seen at many sites during passage and winter.

 

Lesser Spotted Eagle (Aquila pomarina) Vagrant

One seen at Jahra East Outfall on 25.3.2005 (AB, BF,GG) is the sixth record.

 

Greater Spotted Eagle (Aquila clanga) Uncommon migrant; scarce winter visitor

Four juvenile birds wintered: 2 at South Doha and 2 at Jahra East Outfall. Singles have been regularly seen on passage in the SAANR.

 

Steppe Eagle (Aquila nipalensis) Common migrant; scarce winter visitor

Seven over Jahra Pool Reserve on 27.3.2005 (AB, BF, GG) was the highest daily count of this regularly seen passage migrant.

 

Imperial Eagle (Aquila heliaca) Uncommon migrant; rare winter visitor

Two birds wintered at Amghara rubbish tip and 1 or 2 per day were observed on several dates during passage.

 

Booted Eagle (Hieraaetus pennatus) Scarce migrant

Only one record this year was of a single bird flying over the Salmi Road at about kilometre 75 on 27.3.2005 (BF, GG).

 

Osprey (Pandion haliaetus) Scarce migrant; rare winter visitor

Several sightings of single birds. Maximum of 3 together at South Doha on 17.10.2005 (PF, BF) and possibly the same 3 at Jahra East Outfall on 18.10.2005 (AA-S).

 

Lesser Kestrel (Falco naumanni) Common migrant

Regularly seen on spring passage but less so during autumn. Maximum count of 22 over Jahra Pool Reserve on 17.3.2005 (PF, BF, GG). Four or five birds were seen over Jahra East Outfall on several dates in June (AA-S) but there was no evidence of breeding.

 

Common Kestrel (Falco tinnunculus) Uncommon migrant and breeding resident

This species was observed in a wide variety of habitats throughout the year. Maximum count of 25 in the SAANR on 8.4.2005 (PF, BF) but breeding was not confirmed.

 

Merlin (Falco columbarius) Rare winter visitor

A female wintering at Kabd was observed on several occasions in January and February (GG).

 

Saker (Falco cherrug) Rare passage migrant; has wintered

The only record was of one at Jahra East Outfall on 2.11.2005 (A.A-S).

 

Peregrine (Falco peregrinus) Rare disperser

One was seen on a wrecked boat near Bubiyan Island on 28.4.2005 (PF, BF).

 

Water Rail (Rallus aquaticus) Uncommon migrant and resident; has bred

Small numbers were resident at Sabah Al-Salem and at Jahra East Outfall, mostly located by call.

 

Spotted Crake (Porzana porzana) Uncommon migrant and resident

One was singing at Jahra Pool Reserve on 24.2.2005 (GG, CM, WM). Small numbers were resident at Sabah Al-Salem, Jahra East Outfall and Doha East. Maximum daily count and the highest ever Kuwait daily count was 9 at East Doha on 9.4.2005 (PF, BF, MV). 

 

Little Crake (Porzana parva) Uncommon migrant and resident; breeds

Small numbers resident at Doha East and Sabah Al-Salem and singing from both sites from February onwards but breeding was not confirmed in 2005. Highest count was of 6 at East Doha on 9.4.2005 (PF, BF, MV)

 

Baillon’s Crake (Porzana pusilla) Scarce migrant

A dead bird found at Al-Abraq Al-Khabari on 27.3.2005 (GG) had probably been shot within the previous two weeks.

 

Corn Crake (Crex crex) Uncommon migrant; rare winter visitor

Two spring records: one confiding individual was at the Tulha drinking pool in the SAANR from 6.5.2005 to 13.5.2005 (AB, PF, BF) and a second at Doha South on 20.5.2005 (BF).

 

Common Moorhen (Gallinula chloropus) Uncommon resident; breeds        

Resident at most wetland sites. Maximum 24 at Doha East on several dates in May. Breeding confirmed at East Doha and Sabah Al-Salem with juveniles seen.

 

Purple Swamp-Hen (Porphyrio porphyrio) Scarce resident; has bred

A single bird first observed at South Doha on 12.5.2005 (PF), then resident at South Doha with up to 6 birds seen and heard on many dates but frustratingly breeding could not be confirmed.

 

Eurasian Coot (Fulica atra) Uncommon migrant and resident

Seen on most visits to South Doha and Sabah Al-Salem. Confirmed breeding at Sabah Al-Salem with two non-flying juveniles observed on 6.5.2005 (PF, BF).

 

Macqueen's Bustard (Chlamydotis macqueeni) Irregular winter visitor; has bred

One in the Sabah Al-Ahmed Natural Reserve on 1.12.2005 seen by the head ranger, Fawzi, but could not be relocated later the same day.

 

Eurasian Oystercatcher (Haematopus ostralegus) Common migrant and winter Seen in moderate number on passage and in winter especially at the Doha Spit high tide roost and Jahra East. The maximum count was 158 at the Doha Spit high tide wader roost on 17.12.2005 (BF).

                                                                                 

Black-winged Stilt (Himantopus himantopus) Common; small numbers breed

Observations were made throughout the year in varying numbers at both fresh water pools and coastal mudflats. The following breeding records were made. At South Doha distraction display indicating the presence of young birds nearby was observed on 20.5.2005. Sixteen fledged juveniles were present with 46 adults at East Doha on 17.6.2005 (BF, PF).

 

Pied Avocet (Recurvirostra avosetta) Uncommon migrant and winter visitor

Observations were made at sites in Sulaibikhat Bay on many dates during passage and winter. Maximum count was 18 at East Doha on 11.3.2005 (PF, BF). A fully fledged juvenile at East Doha on 17.6.2005 (AB, BF) was evidence of possible breeding.

      

Crab Plover (Dromas ardeola) Common resident; breeds

About 1500 pairs on nesting beaches on Bubiyan Island 28.4.2005 (PF, BF), probably the largest breeding population in the world. Up to 350 birds wintered in Sulaibikhat Bay.

 

Stone-Curlew (Burhinus oedicnemus) Uncommon migrant and rare winter visitor

Four present on the sand berrn bordering Wadi Al-Batin on 27.3.2005 (BF, GG) and 2 in Sulaibikhat Nature Reserve on 26.9.2005 (JT) were the only records this year.

 

Cream-coloured Courser (Cursorius cursor) Common disperser; breeds

Sightings were made in desert location on several dates but breeding was not proven. At Jahra East Outfall birds were present from 25.5.2005 to 11.7.2005 reaching a maximum count of 96 on 29.6.2005 (AA-S).

 

Collared Pratincole (Glareola pratincola) Common migrant; scarce in summer

This species was a regularly observed passage migrant in many different habitats. The maximum count was 14 over the 7th Ring Road on 27.3.2005.

                                                                       

Little Ringed Plover (Charadrius dubius) Uncommon migrant

A regularly observed passage migrant by freshwater pools. The maximum count was 7 at Jahra East Outfall on 5.9.2005 (AA-S).

 

Common Ringed Plover (Charadrius hiaticula) Common migrant and in winter Observed at sites in Sulaibikhat Bay, Jahra Bay and freshwater wetlands on many dates during passage and winter. The maximum count of 240 at East Doha on 6.5.2005 (PF, BF) was a new maximum daily count for Kuwait.

  

Kentish Plover (Charadrius alexandrinus) Very common resident; breeds

Recorded throughout the year in varying numbers at both freshwater pools and coastal mudflats. During a study of breeding birds at the Sulaibikhat Nature Reserve by KA-N, 122 nests were found most containing 3 eggs, none containing 4, eleven 2 and three 1 egg. About a third of the nests were nocturnally predated by Long-eared Hedgehogs.

 

Lesser Sand Plover (Charadrius mongolus) Common migrant and winter visitor

Observed throughout the year in varying numbers at fresh water pools, coastal mudflats and sandbars. The maximum count was 550+ at the Doha Spit high tide wader roost on 15.4.2005.

 

Greater Sand Plover (Charadrius leschenaultii) Uncommon migrant and winter

This species was regularly observed throughout the year in varying numbers at fresh water pools, coastal mudflats and sandbars. The maximum count was 100+ at Jahra East Outfall on 22.6.2005 (AA-S).

 

Caspian Plover (Charadrius asiaticus) Uncommon migrant

One in the SAANR on 1.7.2005 (AbA-S) was the only record this year.

 

Eurasian Dotterel (Charadrius morinellus)  Rare migrant and winter visitor

Five were present in the SAANR on 15.12.2005 (HA-Q). This was the only record this year.

 

Grey Plover (Pluvialis squatarola) Common migrant and winter visitor

This species was regularly observed at sites in Sulaibikhat Bay, Jahra Bay and freshwater wetlands on many dates during passage and winter. The maximum count was 550+ at the Doha Spit high tide wader roost on 15.4.2005 (PF, BF). This was a new maximum daily count for Kuwait.

 

Northern Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus) Scarce migrant and winter visitor

A new highest daily count for Kuwait was 43 seen flying over at Kabd on 24.1.2005 (GG).  A single bird flying over South Doha on 28.1.2005 (WM), 2 over Kabd on 11.2.2005 (GG) and 11 in the Sabah Al-Ahmed Natural Reserve on the seaward side during November 2005 (HA-Q) were the only other records.

                                                                                 

Red-wattled Lapwing (Hoplopterus indicus) Scarce disperser; has bred

One present at Jahra Pool Reserve on 27.2.2005 (KA-G, BF, GG) was the only record this year.

 

White-tailed Lapwing (Vanellus leucurus) Uncommon migrant

This species was an irregularly observed passage migrant on several dates at East Doha and Jahra East Outfall. The maximum count was 2 at East Doha on 3.3.2005 (PF, BF).

 

Great Knot (Calidris tenuirostris) Uncommon winter visitor

Eight were seen on the western side of Bubiyan Island on 10.2.2005 by GG and the KISR team during bird survey work. A single bird was also at Jahra East Outfall on 6.3.2005 (GG).

 

Sanderling (Calidris alba) Common migrant and winter visitor

This species was regularly observed at sites in Sulaibikhat Bay, Jahra Bay and sandy beaches on many dates during passage and winter. The maximum count was 128 at Sabah Al-Salem on 26.3.2005 (BF).

 

Little Stint (Calidris minutus) Very common migrant and winter visitor

Seen in large numbers at sites in Sulaibikhat Bay, Jahra Bay and freshwater wetlands on many dates during passage and winter. The maximum count was 1000+ at East Doha high tide wader roost on 11.3.2005 (PF, BF). This was a new highest daily count for Kuwait.

 

Temminck's Stint (Calidris temminckii) Uncommon migrant and winter visitor 

This species was a regularly observed passage migrant in small number by freshwater pools. A late record was of one at Jahra East Outfall on 10.11.2005 (AA-S). The maximum count of 10 at Jahra East Outfall on 6.4.2005 (PF, MV) was a new highest daily count for Kuwait.

 

Curlew Sandpiper (Calidris ferruginea) Common migrant

Seen in large numbers on passage at both coastal mudflats sites and freshwater pools. The highest spring passage count was 254 at the Doha Spit high tide wader roost on 5.5.2005 (PF, BF), a new highest daily count for Kuwait. 

 

Dunlin (Calidris alpina) Abundant migrant and winter visitor

Seen in large numbers throughout the year at fresh water pools, coastal mudflats and sandbars. The maximum count was 10,000+ at the Doha Spit high tide wader roost on 17.12.2005 (BF).

 

Broad-billed Sandpiper (Limicola falcinella) Common migrant and winter visitor

Observed at sites in Sulaibikhat Bay on many dates during passage and winter. Maximum count was 124 at East Doha on 5.5.2005 (PF, BF), a new highest daily count for Kuwait.

 

Ruff (Philomachus pugnax) Common passage migrant and winter visitor

Recorded throughout the year in varying numbers mainly at freshwater pools but also in smaller numbers on coastal mudflats. Maximum count was 150+ at Jahra East Outfall on 12.5.2005 (PF). This was a new highest daily count for Kuwait.

 

Jack Snipe (Lymnocryptes minimus) Scarce migrant and winter visitor

Maximum 3 at Sabah Al-Salem south reed bed on 4.1.2005 (GG) and 1 remaining there on 31.1.2005. One flushed at South Doha reeds on 30.1.2005 (WM) and one flushed at Jahra East Outfall on 1.11.2005 (A.A-S).

These were the only records this year.

 

Common Snipe (Gallinago gallinago) Common passage migrant and winter visitor

Commonly seen during passage and winter at all freshwater wetland sites. The maximum count 40 at Jahra Pool Reserve on 20.3.2005 (PF) was a new highest daily count for Kuwait

 

Black-tailed Godwit (Limosa limosa) Uncommon migrant; rare winter visitor

Recorded on a few dates at freshwater pools. The maximum counts were of 2 at Jahra East Outfall on 6.4.2005, 9.4.2005 (PF, MV) and 9.10.2005 (AA-S).

                                                                              

Bar-tailed Godwit  (Limosa lapponica) Common migrant and winter visitor

Moderate numbers were seen on coastal mudflats during passage and winter. The maximum count was of 200+ at Jahra East Outfall on 6.4.2005 (PF, MV).

 

Whimbrel (Numenius phaeopus) Common migrant; rare winter visitor

Observed at sites in Sulaibikhat Bay and Jahra Bay on many dates during passage. The maximum count was 123 at East Doha on 29.4.2005 (PF, BF). This was a new highest daily count for Kuwait.

 

Eurasian Curlew (Numenius arquata) Very common migrant and winter visitor

Recorded throughout the year in varying numbers on coastal mudflats. The maximum count was of 250+ at Jahra East Outfall on 6.4.2005 (PF, MV).

 

Common Redshank (Tringa totanus) Very common migrant and winter visitor

Commonly seen throughout the year in varying numbers at freshwater pools and coastal mudflats. The maximum daily count was a total of 1000+ at Sulaibikhat Bay sites on 20.1.2005 (BF). This was a new highest daily count for Kuwait.

 

Marsh Sandpiper (Tringa stagnatilis) Common migrant; uncommon winter visitor

Small numbers were seen on coastal mudflats and freshwater pools during passage and winter. The maximum count was of 10 at Jahra East Outfall on 9.4.2005 (PF, MV).

 

Greenshank (Tringa nebularia) Common migrant; uncommon winter visitor  

This species was regularly observed throughout the year in varying numbers at fresh water pools and coastal mudflats. The maximum count was of 20 at Jahra East Outfall on 10.4.2005 (PF, MV).

 

Green Sandpiper (Tringa ochropus) Uncommon migrant and winter visitor

Seen during passage and winter in varying numbers at freshwater pools. The maximum was 9 at Jahra Pools on 25.3.2005. Three at Sabah Al-Salem pool on 21.6.2005 (BF) was a late record.

 

Wood Sandpiper (Tringa glareola) Common migrant; rare winter visitor

Observations were made during passage in varying numbers at freshwater pools. The maximum daily count was 482 on 6.5.2005 (BF, PF) with 250 at Jahra East Outfall, 300 at East Doha and 22 at Sabah Al-Salem pool.  This is a new maximum daily count for Kuwait.

                                

Terek Sandpiper (Xenus cinereus) Common migrant and winter visitor

Observed throughout the year in varying numbers at freshwater pools and coastal mudflats. The maximum count was 332 at East Doha high tide wader roost on 5.5.2005 (PF, BF).                                                                                

 

Common Sandpiper (Actitis hypoleucos) Uncommon migrant; scarce in winter

Observations were made during migration in small numbers at freshwater pools. The maximum count was 5 at Sabah Al-Salem pool on 26.3.2005.

 

Ruddy Turnstone (Arenaria interpres) Common passage and winter visitor

Observed at sites in Sulaibikhat Bay, Jahra Bay and freshwater wetlands on many dates during passage and winter. The maximum count was 550+ at the Doha Spit high tide wader roost on 15.10.2005 (BF). This is a new highest daily count for Kuwait.

 

Red-necked Phalarope (Phalaropus lobatus) Uncommon migrant

A flock at Jahra East Outfall was present for several weeks in April and May reaching a maximum count of 35 on 5.5.2005 ((PF, BF, MV). This was a new highest daily count for Kuwait.

 

Pomarine Skua (Stercorarius pomarinus) Uncommon migrant

The only record was of a single bird from the Failaka ferry on 5.4.2005 (PF, MV).

 

Arctic Skua (Stercorarius parasiticus) Uncommon migrant

The only record was 6 birds from the Failaka ferry on 5.4.2005 (PF, MV).

 

Pallas’s Gull (Larus icthyaetus) Uncommon winter visitor

Present in late November and December at Doha Spit with a maximum of 18 on 17.12.2005 (BF).

 

Black-headed Gull (Larus ridibundus) Abundant winter; uncommon summer

Many observations of 100+ were made during winter at freshwater pools and all coastal areas.

 

Slender-billed Gull (Larus genei) Common resident; breeds

Several colonies totally 1000+ breeding pairs were present on Bubiyan Island on 28.4.2005 (PF, BF). Three pulli were present on the sea at one of the colonies. No attempt was made to go ashore and count nests.

 

Lesser Black-backed Gull (Larus fuscus) Common migrant and winter visitor

Large numbers were seen at coastal sites during passage and winter. The maximum count was of 1000+ at East Doha high tide roost on 11.3.2005. Away from the coast 400+ at Amghara rubbish tip on 10.12.2005 (PF, BF) contained only 2 birds of the race fuscus (Baltic Gull) and the remainder were heuglini or barabensis but were not sub-specifically identified.

 

Caspian Gull (Larus cachinnans) Very common migrant and winter visitor

Large numbers were seen at coastal sites during passage and winter. The maximum count was of 100+ at East Doha high tide roost on 11.3.2005. Away from the coast 100+ at Amghara rubbish tip on 10.12.2005 (PF, BF).

 

Gull-billed Tern (Gelochelidon nilotica) Very common resident; breeds

Observations were made throughout the year in varying numbers at freshwater pools and coastal mudflats. Only 64 birds were present on Bubiyan and Warba Islands on 28.4.2005 but the main breeding area was not visited.

 

Caspian Tern (Sterna caspia) Common resident; breeds

Observed throughout the year in varying numbers at coastal sites especially mudflats. During a visit to Bubiyan and Warba Islands on 28.4.2005 only 6 birds were seen but the main breeding area was not visited.

 

Greater Crested Tern (Sterna bergii) Common in summer; breeds

A few were seen migrating past coastal sites. During a visit to Bubiyan and Warba Islands on 28.4.2005 only 2 birds were seen but the main breeding area was not visited.

 

Lesser Crested Tern (Sterna bengalensis) Common in summer; breeds

A total of 22 adults but no nests were seen on a visit to Kubbar Island on 26.5.2005 (KA-N, HA-Q, PF, BF). Subsequently on 16.6.2005 only 6 birds were present on Kubbar Island on a visit made with 45 members of the Voluntary Work Center onboard a Kuwait Navy vessel. Only one nest with 1 egg was found, being a circular scrape in the sand with no obvious nesting material present. This nest was amongst those of White-cheeked Terns. This is a total collapse from the breeding estimate of 150 pairs in 2003, with no obvious reason. Disturbance from locals visiting the island in private boats without restrictions could be the cause but this has not yet adversely affected the breeding of White-cheeked Terns or Bridled Terns.

 

Sandwich Tern (Sterna sandvicensis) Uncommon migrant

A few were seen migrating past coastal sites during passage. An early date was of 3 on a sand bar at Kiran on 18.3.2005 (PF, BF). The maximum count was of 6 past Fahaheel on 2.5.2005 (BF).

 

Arctic Tern (Sterna paradisaea) Vagrant

The first record for Kuwait was of a bird seen and photographed at Jahra East Outfall on 22.5.2005 (AA-S), the excellent photographs clearly showing all the diagnostic features.

 

Common Tern (Sterna hirundo) Scarce migrant

Six at Jahra East Outfall on 17.6.2005 (AB, BF) was the only record and also new highest daily count for Kuwait.

 

White-cheeked Tern (Sterna repressa) Very common summer visitor; breeds

A total of 120 adults (60 pairs) with nests containing eggs were seen on a visit to Kubbar Island on 26.5.2005 (HA-Q, KA-N, PF, BF). Subsequently on 16.6.2005 an estimated 1500 pairs were present on Kubbar Island. The breeding colonies were on the east side of the island where no salt bushes were growing. Nest with 2 eggs or chicks were most common with obvious nesting material present.

 

Bridled Tern (Sterna anaethetus) Very common summer visitor; breeds

An estimated total of 3400 adults (1700 pairs) with nests mostly containing 1 egg were seen on a visit to Kubbar Island on 26.5.2005 (HA-Q, KA-N, PF, BF). Subsequently on 16.6.2005 again an estimated 1700 pairs were present on Kubbar Island. Nests with 1 chick were most common under the salt bushes that circle the Island about 10 to 50 metres above the high tide mark or under man-made constructions giving shade. Obvious nesting material consisting of thin twigs was present. Many dead chicks were found and some disturbance by visiting locals was evident.

 

Little Tern (Sterna albifrons) Common migrant; rare summer and winter

Seen regularly on passage at most coastal sites. Maximum 196 on 27.6.2005 (AB, BF) at Jahra East Outfall (174) and Doha East (22) but some of these birds could have been Saunders’s Terns. See below.

 

Saunders's Tern (Sterna saundersi) Uncommon migrant

Six birds seen closely in a Little Tern flock at high tide were positively identified as this species at Jahra East Outfall on 27.6.2005 (AB, BF). About 50 birds out of a total flock of 174 birds were studied with a telescope and from photographs to get this count.

 

Black Tern (Chlidonias niger) Vagrant

The first confirmed record for Kuwait was a single adult in breeding plumage seen and photographed by AA-S at Jahra East Outfall on 11.6.2005. Excellent photographs clearly show all the diagnostic features.

 

Whiskered Tern (Chlidonias hybrida) Uncommon migrant

The only records this year were of 6 adults and one juvenile at East Doha on 17.6.2005 (AB, BF) and 2 adults there on 23.6.2005.

                                                                      

White-winged Tern (Chlidonias leucopterus) Very common migrant; has bred

Seen regularly as a passage migrant at most wetland sites. A new highest daily count of 246 was seen on 6.5.2005 (PF, BF) with 160 at Jahra East Outfall and 86 at Sabah Al-Salem. No evidence of breeding this year.

 

Chestnut-bellied Sandgrouse (Pterocles exustus) Vagrant

A single female found and identified by BF and PF at Sabah Al-Salem on 4.3.2005 following a minor sand storm the previous night is the second Kuwait record. BF telephoned GG and AB who arrived and obtained good views before the bird flew off strongly north. An account of this bird, the second record for Kuwait and an important Western Palearctic record, has been published in Birding World.

 

Pin-tailed Sandgrouse (Pterocles alchata) Irregular disperser

A single male was seen and photographed in the SAANR on 14.9.2005 (HA-Q).

 

Feral Pigeon (Columba livia) Abundant resident; breeds

Commonly seen in all areas including offshore islands.

 

Common Woodpigeon (Columba palumbus) Scarce disperser

One at Sabah Al-Salem on 7.4.2005 (PF, BF, MV) was the only record this year.

 

Eurasian Collared Dove (Streptopelia decaocto) Common breeding resident

Commonly seen at all areas with trees including Tulha in the SAANR and Al-Abraq Al-Khabari. Frequently seen in display flight but no nests found.

 

African Collared Dove (Streptopelia roseogrisea) Scarce resident

Two birds in the Sabah Al-Ahmed Natural Reserve at Tulha in early 2005 (GG) were positively identified as this species which may have been overlooked elsewhere.

 

European Turtle Dove (Streptopelia turtur) Common migrant; has bred

Small numbers were observed at several sites during passage. Unfortunately the highest daily count was of 8 birds shot dead and proudly displayed to us at Al-Abraq Al-Khabari on 23.4.2005 (PF, BF).

 

Laughing Dove (Streptopelia senegalensis) Abundant resident; breeds

A common breeding resident at most sites. A pair observed breeding on a window ledge at English School Fahaheel laid 2 eggs on a flimsy platform nest of twigs, wire and foil wrapping and fledged both young during March. Within two weeks the nest was then used again presumably by the same pair with one egg being laid and successfully fledged (BF).

 

Namaqua Dove (Oena capensis) Uncommon resident; breeds

Birds were seen at Kabd, Sulaibikhat Nature Reserve, East Doha, Power Plant Reeds, Jahra, Sabah Al-Ahmed Natural Reserve, Sabah Al-Salem and Abdali Farms. This species has successfully colonised Kuwait and probably bred.

 

Rose-ringed Parakeet (Psittacula krameri) Common resident; breeds

Present in varying number at Jahra Farms throughout the year and seen in many suburban areas but no confirmed breeding records this year.

Common Cuckoo (Cuculus canorus) Uncommon migrant

A single bird was observed and photographed by PF near Sulaibikhat Bay on 22.1.2005 but could not be relocated subsequently. A wintering bird or an extremely early migrant? The maximum count during migration was of 3 at Tulha in the SAANR on 8.4.2005 (PF, BF).

 

European Scops Owl (Otus scops) Uncommon migrant

The maximum count during migration was of 7 at Tulha in the SAANR on 25.9.2005 (KA-N, JT). Smaller numbers were observed at this site on several other dates during both spring and autumn migration.

 

Little Owl (Athene noctua) Uncommon resident; breeds

Present in small numbers 1 or 2 at Wadi Ar-Rimam in the SAANR throughout the year.

 

European Nightjar (Caprimulgus europaeus) Uncommon migrant

Three records this year: one in Fahaheel Park on 6.5.2005 (PF, BF) on Kubbar Island on 26.5.2005 (PF,BF) and one at Tulha in the SAANR on 29.9.2005 (BF, JT).

 

Egyptian Nightjar (Caprimulgus aegyptius) Uncommon migrant and resident

One was at Jahra Pools on 17.3.2005 (PF, BF, GG) and 5 were present at the Blue Star Farm at Wafra on 18.03.2005 (AB, PF,BF, GG). Up to six were recorded at Kabd from January to April. Unfortunately breeding could not be proven.

 

Common Swift (Apus apus) Common migrant; rare in winter

Has been recorded in small numbers from many sites during migration but in my opinion the eastern race A. a pekinensis can only be reliably distinguish from A. pallidus at close range and in good light.

 

Pallid Swift (Apus pallidus) Very common migrant and winter visitor

Recorded in varying numbers from many sites during migration and winter with 100+ seen on several dates. The presence of birds around tall building in most urban areas from January to April is evidence of breeding. 

 

White-throated Kingfisher (Halcyon smyrnensis) Uncommon in winter; breeds

Single birds present at Jahra Farms, Jahra East Outfall and Sulaibikhat Nature Reserve from January to March and October to December.

 

Common Kingfisher (Alcedo atthis) Scarce migrant and winter visitor

One at Sewer Plant Reeds 31.1.2005 (WM) and another present at Sulaibikhat Nature Reserve in November and December were the only records.

 

Pied Kingfisher (Ceryle rudis) Scarce winter visitor 

The only records were of one at Jahra East Outfall on 12.11.2005 (AA-S) and one at South Doha pools on 1.12.2005 (PF,BF).

 

Blue-cheeked Bee-eater (Merops persicus) Abundant migrant; has bred

This species was an abundant migrant at all sites both coastal and inland. The maximum counts during migration were of hundreds in the SAANR, Jahra East Outfall and Sabah Al-Salem during both spring and autumn migration. At a flooded sand pit in Wafra Farms 14 old nest holes were visited briefly by adults on 12.3.2005 (PF, BF) but on subsequent visits no birds were seen.

 

European Bee-eater (Merops apiaster) Abundant migrant

This species was an abundant migrant at all sites both coastal and inland but in smaller numbers than those of Blue-cheeked Bee-eater.

 

European Roller (Coracias garrulus) Uncommon migrant

This species was an uncommon migrant at many sites both coastal and inland. The maximum count was of 9 at Tulha in the SAANR on 5.5.2005 (PF, BF).

 

Indian Roller (Coracias benghalensis) Scarce disperser mainly in winter

Three individuals wintered. One at the Sulaibikhat Nature Reserve on 15.11.2005 (AA-S) and 2 at Jahra Farms throughout December (PF, BF).

 

Eurasian Hoopoe (Upupa epops) Common migrant

This species was a common migrant at many sites both coastal and inland.

The maximum count was of 10 at Tulha in the SAANR on 29.8.2005 (AA-S).

 

Eurasian Wryneck (Jynx torquilla) Uncommon migrant

This species was an uncommon migrant at many sites both coastal and inland.

The maximum count was of 2 at Tulha in the SAANR on 8.4.2005 (PF, BF).

 

Black-crowned Sparrow-lark (Eremopterix nigriceps) UC resident; breeds

Up to 12 were present in the Sabah Al-Ahmed Natural Reserve throughout the year. Breeding was proven with a nest and eggs found at Kabd on 8.3.2005.

 

Dunn's Lark (Eremalauda dunni) Uncommon resident; breeds

Seen on many visits to the SAANR and Salmi/Wadi Al-Batin area. Maximum recorded was 4 present in the SAANR on 24.3.2005 (BF, GG). Breeding confirmed with a nest containing 4 eggs found in the SAANR on 19.4.2005 (KA-N). The eggs hatched but the young may have been predated or left the nest and dispersed at an early stage of development as the nest was empty on 28.4.2005.

 

Bar-tailed Lark (Ammomanes cinctura) Common resident; breeds

Usually seen as pairs at all times of the year in the SAANR and Salmi/Wadi Al-Batin area. Song flight in March and April but breeding not confirmed in 2005.

 

Desert Lark (Ammomanes deserti) Uncommon resident; breeds

The only records for this species are from the Salmi/Wadi Al-Batin area on several dates throughout the year but it was not recoded in the SAANR.      

                                                 

Greater Hoopoe Lark (Alaemon alaudipes) Common resident; breeds

Up to 8 in the Sabah Al-Ahmed Natural Reserve and the Salmi/Wadi Al-Batin area  throughout the year. In the SAANR a nest in a low bush with 4 eggs was found on 1.5.2005.

 

Thick-billed Lark (Rhamphocoris clotbey) Rare disperser in spring; has bred

A pair in the Salmi/Wadi Al-Batin area on 8.3.2005 (GG) and 10.3.2005 (AA-S) was evidence of possible breeding. These were the only records this year.

 

Bimaculated Lark (Melanocorypha bimaculata) Uncommon resident; has bred

Two seen in the SAANR on 31.1.2005 (GG, CM, WM) and 15 there on 10.3.2005 (PF) were the only records this year.

 

Greater Short-toed Lark (Calandrella brachydactyla) Common resident; breeds

Recorded in varying numbers from the SAANR and the Salmi/Wadi Al-Batin area on many dates throughout the year but no confirmed breeding records. The maximum count was of 35 in the SAANR 31.1.2005 (GG, CM, WM).

 

Lesser Short-toed Lark (Calandrella rufescens) Common resident; breeds

Recorded in varying numbers from the SAANR and the Salmi/Wadi Al-Batin area on many dates throughout the year but no confirmed breeding records. The maximum count was of 300 in the SAANR 31.1.2005 (GG, CM, WM).

 

Crested Lark (Galerida cristata) Very common resident; breeds

Recorded in varying numbers from most sites on many dates throughout the year with several juveniles seen in May and June at the Tulha drinking pool in the SAANR.

 

Eurasian Skylark (Alauda arvensis) Common winter visitor

Present in the SAANR from January to early March with a maximum of 65 on 31.1.2005 (GG, CM, WM) and again in November and December with a maximum count of 350 on 2.12.2005 (PF, BF). This was a new highest daily count for Kuwait.

 

Oriental Skylark (Alauda gulgula) Scarce winter visitor

Present in the SAANR in January with a maximum of 2+ on 31.1.2005 (GG, CM, WM) and again in November and December when photographs of flying birds and flight calls revealed that at least 15 were in the skylark flocks on 2.12.2005. This was a new highest daily count for Kuwait.

 

Temminck's Lark (Eremophila bilopha) Common disperser in winter; breeds

Recorded in varying numbers from the Salmi/Wadi Al-Batin area on most of the dates the site was visited during the winter months, the highest count being 35 on 9.12.2005 but no confirmed breeding records.

 

Sand Martin (Riparia riparia) Abundant migrant

Recorded in varying numbers from many sites during migration with hundreds seen on several dates.

 

Barn Swallow (Hirundo rustica) Abundant migrant; rare summer

Recorded in varying numbers from many sites during every month of the year with hundreds seen on many dates during migration.

 

Red-rumped Swallow (Hirundo daurica) Common migrant 

Recorded in small numbers from many sites during migration. Maximum was 5 at Sabah Al Salem on 7.4.2004 (PF, MV). One at Jahra on 28.1.2005 (WM) was unusual and indicates possible wintering.

 

Common House Martin (Delichon urbica) Abundant migrant 

Recorded in varying numbers from many sites during migration with 50+ seen on several dates. Three at Jahra and 3 at South Doha on 28.1.2005 (WM) was unusual and indicates possible wintering.

 

Richard's Pipit (Anthus richardi) Rare migrant 

The only record was of 2 at Sulaibikhat Nature Reserve on 24.9.2005 with one remaining there on 26.9.2005 (JT).

 

Tawny Pipit (Anthus campestris) Common migrant and winter visitor 

Recorded in varying numbers from many sites during migration and winter. The maximum count was 8 on Failaka Island on 8.4.2005 (PF, MV).

 

Olive-backed Pipit (Anthus hodgsoni) Rare winter visitor

Two records this year: one at Al-Abraq Al-Khabari on 7.1.2005 (BF, GG) and a second at Jahra Farms on 19.2.2005 (GG).

 

Tree Pipit (Anthus trivialis) Common migrant; rare winter visitor 

Recorded in small numbers from many sites during migration. The maximum count was 3 at Tulha in the SAANR on 8.4.2005.

 

Red-throated Pipit (Anthus cervinus) Very common migrant; scarce winter visitor 

Varying numbers were recorded from many sites during migration. The maximum count was of 75 at Jahra East Outfall on 31.3.2005 (PF,BF,GG).

 

Water Pipit (Anthus spinoletta) Common migrant and winter visitor 

Varying numbers were recorded from many sites during migration and winter. The maximum winter count was of a flock 28 at East Doha on 4.2.2005.

 

Buff-bellied Pipit (Anthus rubescens) Vagrant

The first for Kuwait was at East Doha with several Water Pipits on 11.2.2005. (AB, BF, GG).

George Gregory’s account from his book, The Birds of the State of Kuwait, is repeated below:

'On 11 February 2005, at about 10am, AB, BF and GG were driving back to the main road at East Doha, having observed birds in the area near the reedbeds. After crossing the stream nearest the road, AB noticed a pipit on a flat grassy area near the stream. After turning the vehicle around to view the bird, the observers saw it on the ground in with about six Water Pipits. After prolonged views and comparison with the Water Pipits, they identified the bird as a Buff-bellied Pipit, the first for Kuwait.

Size and shape: About 10% smaller than each nearby Water Pipit, less 'lanky', more 'compact'.

Plumage: Upperparts fairly dark brown, more noticeably browner than the Water Pipits, with fairly distinct darker streaking. Buffish-white supercilium. Outer tail feathers show white edges. Upperwings fairly dark brown with off-white/pale buff tips to greater and median secondary coverts. Underparts slightly off-white, with buffish wash on sides and fairly dark streaking mostly on breast and flanks. These streaks were clearly more distinct than any on the Water Pipits.

Exposed parts: Bill and eye very dark. Legs dark brown tinged red.

Behaviour: Walked around on short grassy area and on bare ground with Water Pipits. Silent.

 After comparing this bird with nearby Water Pipits (A. spinoletta), the observers realised that it had probably been overlooked as this other species before in Kuwait, and that some illustrations in field guides are not entirely accurate.’

 

Yellow Wagtail (Motacilla flava) Very common migrant; rare summer visitor 

Varying numbers were recorded from many sites during migration. The maximum count was of 500+ at Jahra East Outfall on 25.3.2005.

 

Citrine Wagtail (Motacilla citreola) Scarce migrant 

A male in breeding plumage was at Jahra East Outfall on 6.4.2005 (MA-S) and a female/immature at Sulaibikhat Nature Reserve on 14.8.2005 (KA-N).  Both birds were photographed.

 

Grey Wagtail (Motacilla cinerea) Uncommon migrant; scarce winter visitor 

Observed in small numbers at Jahra East Outfall and Sabah Al Salem during migration. Maximum 3 at Sabah Al Salem on 10.11.2005

 

White Wagtail (Motacilla alba) Abundant migrant and winter visitor 

Large numbers were recorded from many sites during migration and winter. The maximum count was of 250+ at Jahra East Outfall on 25.3.2005 (AB,BF,GG).

 

White-eared Bulbul (Pycnonotus leucogenys) Very common resident; breeds

A common breeding resident at most sites where trees are present but only once seen at Al Abraq Al-Khabari in the far west of Kuwait.

 

Red-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus cafer) Common resident; breeds

The only reliable site for the species is Green Island where it was seen in small numbers on all visits at all times of the year.                                                                         

 

Grey Hypocolius (Hypocolius ampelinus) Uncommon migrant and winter visitor 

A flock of 12 birds seen in flight north of the second ring road in Dasman on 27.1.2005 (AB) is the highest count. The only other records this year were of 6 in the SAANR seaward side on 3.3.2005 (HA-Q) and one at Tulha in the SAANR on 22.4.2005 (AB,BF).

 

Rufous-tailed Scrub Robin (Cercotriches galactotes) Common migrant; breeds 

Small numbers were recorded from many sites throughout the year. The maximum count was of 6 at Tulha in the SAANR on 8.4.2005. Breeding was proven at South Doha where 2 newly fledged young were observed with a pair of adults on 23.6.2005 (BF).

 

European Robin (Erithacus rubecula) Uncommon winter visitor

Small numbers were recorded from several sites with trees such as Jahra Farms, Abdali Farms and Al-Abraq Al-Khabari during winter.

 

Thrush Nightingale (Luscinia luscinia) Uncommon migrant 

Single birds were recorded from several sites. The highest count was of 2 at Tulha in the SAANR on 29.4.2005 (PF, BF).

 

Common Nightingale (Luscinia megarhynchos) Uncommon migrant 

Small numbers were recorded from several sites. The highest count was of 8 at Tulha in the SAANR on 29.4.2005 (PF, BF).

 

Bluethroat (Luscinia svecica) Common migrant and winter visitor

Small numbers were recorded from several wetland sites such as Jahra East Outfall, South Doha, East Doha and Sabah Al-Salem during winter. The highest counts were 6 at East Doha on 28.1.2005 (PF, BF) and 6 at South Doha on 1.12.2005.

 

White-throated Robin (Irania gutturalis) Uncommon migrant

Small numbers were recorded from several sites with trees and bushes such as Tulha, Qaisat and Al-Abraq Al-Khabari during migration. The highest count was of 5 at Tulha in the SAANR on both 22.4.2005 and 29.4.2005 (PF, BF). It was noticeable that the earlier migrants in spring were males with females appearing a few weeks later.

 

Black Redstart (Phoenicurus ochruros) Uncommon migrant and winter visitor

One or two of the race P. o. semirufus wintered in at both Al-Abraq Al-Khabari and Abdali Farms.

 

Common Redstart (Phoenicurus phoenicurus) Very common migrant.

Moderate numbers were recorded from several sites during migration. The highest count was of 30 at Tulha in the SAANR on 8.4.2005 (PF, BF).

 

Whinchat (Saxicola rubetra) Uncommon migrant; rare in winter

Single birds were recorded from several sites during spring migration. The maximum count was 2 at East Doha on 2.5.2005.

 

Common Stonechat (Saxicola torquatus) Uncommon migrant and winter visitor

Single birds or pairs wintered at many sites both coastal and inland with 3 present at East Doha on 28.1.2005 (PF).

 

Isabelline Wheatear (Oenanthe isabellinus) Very common migrant and in winter

Moderate numbers were recorded from several sites during migration and winter. The maximum count was 14 in the SAANR on 9.10.2005.

 

Northern Wheatear (Oenanthe oenanthe) Common migrant

Small numbers were recorded from several sites during migration. The maximum count was 3 in the SAANR on 24.3.2005.

 

Pied Wheatear (Oenanthe pleschanka) Very common migrant and winter visitor

Moderate numbers were recorded from several sites during migration and winter. The maximum daily count was 32 in the SAANR on 9.10.2005.

 

Black-eared Wheatear (Oenanthe hispanica) Uncommon migrant

Small numbers were recorded from several sites during migration. The maximum count was 3 at in the SAANR on 8.4.2005.

 

Desert Wheatear (Oenanthe deserti) Common migrant and winter visitor

Moderate numbers were recorded from several sites during migration and winter. The maximum count was 18 in the SAANR on 9.10.2005

 

Finsch's Wheatear (Oenanthe finschii) Scarce migrant and winter visitor

Singles wintered at Al-Abraq Al-Khabari seen on 7.1.2005 and in the SAANR from 15.12.2005 to the end of the year.

 

Mourning Wheatear (Oenanthe lugens) Uncommon winter visitor

Two birds wintered in Wadi Ar-Rimam in the SAANR and up to 7 in wadis on the Jal Az-Zor escarpment both in the SAANR and outside near Mutla Repeater Station. Seen on most visits in January, February, March, November and December.

 

Red-tailed Wheatear (Oenanthe chrysopygia) Uncommon winter visitor

Two separate birds wintered in the SAANR, seen on several dates in November and December. Single were also seen at Sulaibikhat Bay on 3.11.2005 (BF, MN) and on Failaka Island on 4.11.2005(MN).

 

Hume's Wheatear (Oenanthe alboniger) Vagrant

One was found in a wadi on the Jal Az-Zor escarpment in the SAANR on 11.2.2005 with all diagnostic features observed (AB, BF, GG). This is the sixth Kuwait record.

 

White-crowned Wheatear (Oenanthe leucopyga) Scarce disperser

The only record was of a single bird on the Wadi Al-Batin sand berm on 8.3.2005 (GG).

 

Rufous-tailed Rock Thrush (Monticola saxatilis) Uncommon migrant

Small numbers were recorded from several sites during migration. The highest count was of 2 at Tulha in the SAANR on 24.3.2005 (PF, BF).

 

Blue Rock Thrush (Monticola solitarius) Uncommon migrant and winter visitor

Up to 8 wintered in wadis on the Jal Az-Zor escarpment both in the SAANR and outside near Mutla Repeater Station. Seen on most visits in January, February, March, November and December.

 

Common Blackbird (Turdus merula) Scarce winter visitor

One male wintered at Al-Abraq Al-Khabari, being seen on 7.1 and 21.1.2005.  

 

Song Thrush (Turdus philomelos) Common migrant and winter visitor

Many winter records mainly from irrigated farms, the highest count being of 23 at Jahra Farms on 2.12.2005.

 

Cetti's Warbler (Cettia cetti) Uncommon migrant and winter visitor

The only record was one singing and showing briefly at South Doha on

17.3.2005 (BF, PF).

Graceful Prinia (Prinia gracilis) Common resident; breeds

A common breeding resident where salt bushes are found but usually within 5 kilometres of the coast. There were no records from Al-Abraq Al-Khabari, Abdali Farms or Wafra Farms. Breeding was proven and Sulaibikhat Nature Reserve with 2 nests with eggs that successfully hatched and the young fledged (KA-N). At South Doha recently fledged young were seen and the maximum count there was 30 on 6.4.2005.

 

Common Grasshopper Warbler (Locustella naevia) Scarce migrant

Single birds were singing but not showing at South Doha on 17.3.2005 (BF,PF) and Sabah Al-Salem in late March and April.

 

Savi's Warbler (Locustella lusciniodes) Uncommon migrant

Singing at Sabah Al-Salem, South Doha pits and Jahra East Outfall from 3.3.2005 until late April but breeding not confirmed.

 

Moustached Warbler (Acrocephalus melanopogon) Uncommon breeder

Two birds observed singing at South Doha on 5.5.2005 were evidence of possible breeding there. This was the only record this year.

 

Sedge Warbler (Acrocephalus schoenobaenus) Common migrant

Small numbers were recorded from several sites during migration. The maximum count was 3 at Tulha in the SAANR on 12.6.2005 (AA-S).

 

European Reed Warbler (Acrocephalus scirpaceus) Common migrant; breeds

Small numbers were recorded from several sites during migration. Confirmed breeding at South Doha pits on 23.6.2005 with two recently fledged young observed (BF).

 

Marsh Warbler (Acrocephalus palustris) Common migrant

Small numbers were recorded from several sites during migration. The maximum count was 3 at Tulha in the SAANR on 27.5.2005.

 

Basra Reed Warbler (Acrocephalus griseldis) Uncommon migrant

One seen singing at Sewer Plant Reeds on 3.5.2005 (BF, WM) and another at South Doha from 2.5.2005 to 12.5.2005, but not located on 17.5.2005 or thereafter (PF, BF), are evidence of possible breeding. Away from possible breeding sites during migration one was at Tulha in the SAANR on 19.5.2005 (PF, BF) and in autumn a single bird was seen at Sulaibikhat Reserve on 24.9.2005 (JT).The excellent photographs of this bird were published in an identification article by JT in Birding World.                    

                                     

Clamorous Reed Warbler (Acrocephalus stentoreus) Uncommon migrant  

Pairs were observed and song heard from March till May at Jahra East Outfall, Sabah Al-Salem, South Doha, East Doha and Sewer Plant Reeds but breeding was not confirmed.

 

Great Reed Warbler (Acrocephalus arundinaceus) Common migrant; breeds

Pairs were observed and song heard from March till June at Jahra East Outfall, South Doha and Sewer Plant Reeds but breeding was not confirmed. Away from possible breeding sites during migration 2 were at Tulha in the SAANR on 5.5.2005 (PF, BF) and single at several other sites.

                                                                              

Eastern Olivaceous Warbler (Hippolais pallida) Common migrant; breeds

Small numbers were recorded from several sites during migration. The highest counts were 4 in spring at Tulha in the SAANR on 29.4.2005 (PF, BF) and 5 there in autumn on 23.8.2005 (AA-S).

 

Booted Warbler (Hippolais caligata) Vagrant 

A Hippolais seen well at Tulha drinking pool on 22.5.2005 (AB, BF) was identified as Booted Warbler. AB noted that it was too warm and buffy for Sykes’s and unlike the washed out greyish looking Sykes’s seen later in the spring. This is the first definite record for Kuwait but older records of Booted Warbler before the eastern race H. rama was considered a full species could have been H. caligata.                                                                 

 

Sykes's Warbler (Hippolais rama) Scarce migrant

Small numbers were recorded from several sites during migration. The highest count was 3 at Tulha in the SAANR on 5.5.2005 (PF, BF).

 

Upcher's Warbler (Hippolais languida) Uncommon migrant

Small numbers were recorded from several sites during migration. The highest counts were 5 at Tulha in the SAANR on both 28.7.2005 and 13.8.2005

(AA-S).

 

Blackcap (Sylvia atricapilla) Very common migrant

Moderate numbers were recorded from several sites during migration. The highest count was 35 at Tulha in the SAANR on 8.4.2005 (PF, BF).

 

Garden Warbler (Sylvia borin) Common migrant

Small numbers were recorded from several sites during migration. The highest count was 5 at Tulha in the SAANR on 12.9.2005 (AA-S).

 

Barred Warbler (Sylvia nisoria) Common migrant

Small numbers were recorded from several sites during migration. The highest counts were 4 at Tulha in the SAANR on 15.4.2005 (PF, BF) in spring and in autumn 4 there on 29.8.2005 (AA-S).

 

Lesser Whitethroat (Sylvia curruca) Common migrant

Small numbers were recorded from several sites during migration. The highest count was 8 at Al Abraq on 9.4.2005 (PF, MV).                                    

   

Eastern Orphean Warbler (Sylvia crassirostris) Uncommon migrant

An early record was of a male at Power Plant Reeds in the south of Kuwait on 25.2.2005 (BF, GG). Single birds were recorded from several other sites during migration.  

 

Common Whitethroat (Sylvia communis) Very common migrant

Moderate numbers were recorded from several sites during migration. The highest count was 23 at Tulha in the SAANR on 29.4.2005 (PF, BF).

 

Asian Desert Warbler (Sylvia nana) Common migrant and scarce winter visitor

Small numbers were recorded from several sites during migration and winter. The maximum count was 3 in the SAANR on 6.11.2005.

 

Ménétries’s Warbler (Sylvia mystacea) Common migrant; scarce winter visitor

Small numbers were recorded from several sites during migration and winter. The maximum count was 4 at Tulha in the SAANR on 8.4.2005 (PF, BF).

 

Greenish Warbler (Phylloscopus trochiloides) Rare migrant

One visiting the drinking pool at Tulha in the SAANR on 22.9.2005 (BF) was photographed and was the only record.                              

 

Mountain Chiffchaff (Phylloscopus sindianus) Rare migrant

Two birds were positively identified at Al Abraq on 11.3.2005(BF,GG)

 

Common Chiffchaff (Phylloscopus collybita) Abundant migrant and winter visitor

This species was recorded wintering in small numbers at many sites and on spring passage reached a peak in late March and early April with maxima of 150 at Al-Abraq Al-Khabari on 11.3.2005 (BF,GG) and 60 at Tulha on 8.4.2006.

                                                                        

Willow Warbler (Phylloscopus trochilus) Abundant migrant; rare winter visitor

Moderate numbers were recorded from several sites during migration. The maximum count was 22 at Tulha in the SAANR on 29.4.2005 (PF, BF).

One at Sulaibikhat Nature Reserve on 20.12.2005 (AA-S) was apparently wintering.

 

Spotted Flycatcher (Muscicapa striata) Very common migrant

Moderate numbers were recorded from several sites during migration. The maximum count was 20 at Tulha in the SAANR on 29.4.2005.

 

Red-breasted Flycatcher (Ficedula parva) Scarce migrant

Two autumn records of single birds at Al-Abraq Al-Khabari on 14.10.2005 and Sabriya Farm on 21.10.2005 (PF, BF).

 

Semi-collared Flycatcher (Ficedula semitorquata) Uncommon migrant

Only two records, both in March. The earliest spring record was one male at Wafra Farms on 16.3.2005 (PF, BF). Seven, 6 males and 1 female, were in the Sabah Al-Salem area on 26.3.2005 (BF), a new highest daily count for Kuwait.

 

Eurasian Golden Oriole (Oriolus oriolus) Common migrant; has bred

Small numbers were recorded from several sites during migration. The maximum count was 4 at Tulha in the SAANR on 5.5.2005 (PF, BF).

 

Isabelline Shrike (Lanius isabellinus) Common migrant and winter visitor

Moderate numbers were recorded from several sites during migration and winter. The maximum count was 10 at Tulha in the SAANR on 22.4.2005 (PF, BF).

 

Red-backed Shrike (Lanius collurio) Common migrant; rare in winter

Moderate numbers were recorded from several sites during migration. The maximum count was 22 at Tulha in the SAANR on 29.4.2005.

 

Lesser Grey Shrike (Lanius minor) Uncommon migrant

Small numbers were recorded from several sites during migration. The maximum count was 3 at Tulha in the SAANR on 5.5.2005.

                                                                                                                           

Southern Grey Shrike (Lanius meridionalis) Common migrant and winter visitor

Small numbers were recorded from several sites during migration and winter. The maximum count was 6 at Tulha in the SAANR on 11.9.2005 (AA-S), 3 of these being of the race L. m. pallidirostris (Steppe Grey Shrike).

 

Woodchat Shrike (Lanius senator) Uncommon migrant

Small numbers were recorded from several sites during migration. The maximum count was 6 at Tulha in the SAANR on 8.4.2005 (PF, BF).

 

Masked Shrike (Lanius nubicus) Common migrant

Small numbers were recorded from several sites during migration. The maximum count was 2 at Tulha in the SAANR on 22.4.2005 (PF, BF).

                                                                              

House Crow (Corvus splendens) Uncommon resident; breeds

Probably still present at Shuwaikh Port but this site was not checked this year.

 

Brown-necked Raven (Corvus ruficollis) Scarce disperser; has bred

One at the Sulaibikhat Nature Reserve on 28.1.2005 (WM) and probably the same bird flying north at East Doha on the same date (BF, PF).

 

Common Starling (Sturnus vulgaris) Very common winter visitor; common migrant

Recorded from several sites during migration and winter. The maximum count was of 150 at Jahra East Outfall on 30.1.2005 (WM).

 

Rosy Starling (Sturnus roseus) Scarce migrant

Immatures were observed on several dates in August at the Tulha drinking pool in the SAANR with a maximum of 4 on 26.8.2005 (KA-N). There were no spring records.

 

Common Myna (Acridotheres tristis) Very common resident; breeds

A very common breeding resident at most urban and suburban sites. It is regularly seen entering the tall street lamps where it breeds and newly fledged young were seen begging for food from their parents. Not seen away from urban areas at sites such as Al-Abraq Al-Khabari and Abdali Farms.                           

                                               

Bank Mynah (Acridotheres ginginianus) Uncommon resident; breeds

In early March six birds were seen re-excavating nest holes in a well at the Abdullah Al-Habashi Farm at Jahra and the colony was re-establishing itself (GG).

 

House Sparrow (Passer domesticus) Abundant resident; breeds  

An abundant breeding resident seen at all sites.                                                                         

 

Spanish Sparrow (Passer hispaniolensis) Common resident; breeds

Large numbers were recorded from several sites during winter. The maximum count was 500 at East Doha on 28.1.2005 (PF). Present at Tulha throughout the breeding season with 25 there on 8.4.2005 but no new nests were found.

 

Pale Rockfinch (Petronia brachydactyla) Uncommon migrant; has bred

Seen in the SAANR on several dates. The largest flock, containing 70 birds, was present in Wadi Ar-Rimam in the SAANR on 8.4.2005 (PF, BF).

 

Chestnut-shouldered Sparrow (Petronia xanthocollis) UC migrant; breeds

Small numbers were recorded from Tulha in the SAANR on several dates during migration. The maximum count was 10 at Tulha on 22.4.2005 (PF, BF).

 

Indian Silverbill (Euodice malabarica) Uncommon resident; has bred

Only recorded at Sabah Al-Salem marsh with 2 there on 16.10.2005.

 

Common Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs) Rare winter visitor.

One was heard calling but not seen in high winds at Rawdatain on 21.10.2005 (PF, BF) was the only record.                                                                          

 

European Goldfinch (Carduelis carduelis) Rare migrant and winter visitor

One juvenile at Tulha in the SAANR on 1.6.2005 (KA-N) and an adult there on 13.6.2005 (AA-S) were the only records.            

 

European Siskin (Carduelis spinus) Rare winter visitor

Three records. A small flock of 8 birds including at least 3 males were in the reeds at Jahra East Outfall on 30.1.2005 (WM). At Al-Abraq Al-Khabari 5 were recorded on 18.2.2005 (BF, GG) and 2 were at Sewer Plant Reeds on 25.2.2005 (GG).

 

Trumpeter Finch (Bucanetes githagineus) Uncommon resident; may breed

Four in the Sabah Al-Ahmed Natural Reserve on 11.2.2005 (AB, BF, GG) were the only record.

 

Common Rosefinch  (Carpodacus erythrinus) Scarce migrant

A single bird at Tulha in the Sabah Al-Ahmed Natural Reserve on 4.9.2005

(AA-S) was the only record.

 

Ortolan Bunting  (Emberiza hortulana) Common migrant

Moderate numbers were recorded from several sites during migration. The maximum count was 150+ at East Doha on 9.4.2005 (PF,BF,MV).

 

Grey-necked Bunting (Emberiza buchanani) Vagrant

The first record for Kuwait was found at Tulha drinking pool in the SAANR on 14.9.2005 (AA-S). Good quality photographs were taken but the bird was not immediately identified as this species although AA-S thought it was a possible Grey-necked Bunting. Following the publication of an article in Alula on Grey-necked Bunting identification A.A-S reviewed his photograph. Repeated on the next page is the email Abdulrahman Al-Sirhan sent to BF on 12.6.2006:

 

‘As I was reading an article by Pauli Dernjatin in Alula 2/2006 about identification of Grey-necked Bunting, I remembered a Bunting that I suspected was Grey-necked Bunting but could not confirm it. By applying Pauli's theory (copied from literature) about the tertials, I now think it is actually a Grey-necked Bunting, to confirm this I sent Pauli Dernjatin (who is a Finnish birder) the photographs last night, now I am waiting for his reply. The bird was photographed at Tulha on 14 September 2005 10:20 AM when it came to the pool to drink water. On 16 Sep. 2005 I went to Tulha but didn't see the bird’.

Pauli Dernjatin’s brief but confirmatory reply by email is repeated below:

‘I just studied your photo and for me the birds looks E. buchanani, Grey-necked Bunting. The tertials are not the most typical but ok for grey-necked’.

This bird completes a hat-trick of Kuwait firsts for Abdulrahman Al-Sirhan

during 2005 !!

 

Red-headed Bunting (Emberiza bruniceps) Rare migrant

An adult male with a slightly deformed bill was observed at the Tulha drinking pool in the SAANR on 13.5.2005(PF). An adult female was also at the Tulha drinking pool in the SAANR on 28.8.2005 (AA-S). Some of the immature birds seen in autumn may have been this species but have been recorded as

Black-headed Bunting. See the next species account.

 

Black-headed Bunting (Emberiza melanocephala) Uncommon migrant

One adult male seen at Tulha in the SAANR on 22.4.2005 (AB) was the only spring record. There was an excellent autumn passage with a maximum of 32 immature birds at the Tulha drinking pool in the SAANR on 26.8.2005 (KA-N) and seen on every visit to Tulha between mid August and mid September. This species may have been overlooked in the past due to a lack of coverage in August. The identification of immature birds of this species and Red-headed Bunting has proven problematic despite good photographs being taken. To quote The Collins Bird Guide by Lars Svensson and Peter J. Grant: ‘1st winter birds: very like Red-headed and often not safely separable in the field’.

 

Corn Bunting (Milaria calandra) Uncommon migrant; common winter visitor

Moderate numbers were recorded from several sites in winter. The maximum count was 12 at Kabd on 14.3.2005 (GG).

 

Unpublished 2004 records

 

Long-tailed Shrike (Lanius schach) Vagrant

An adult, the first record for Kuwait, was found and photographed at Jahra Pool Reserve on 7.10.2004 (KA-G).

 

Ring Ouzel (Turdus torquatus) Vagrant                                                                             

One seen and photographed at Jahra Pool Reserve on 21.11.2004 (KA-G) was the fifth record.

 

This report was compiled and edited by Brian Foster, the OSME representative for Kuwait, who can be contacted by email at brian_foster_uk@yahoo.co.uk