Aug 312017
 
The Levante winds of Spring - Spain 2017

I lead a tour group from the the US Audubon Naturalist Society in April to southern Spain. We had a great time apart from the awful windy weather. The famous Levante wind just would not stop for almost the whole eight days. We did however have a great time, saw lots of birds and other […]

Jul 212017
 
Waders and Terns - Jubail

Whilst birding the Jubail area in strong winds and the middle of summer few birds are generally seen. Waders can always be seen on the sabkha but they are restricted to breeding Black-winged stilts and Kentish Plovers as well as further inland Little Ringed Plovers that breed locally. A single Greater Sand Plover was a […]

Jul 112017
 
Mongolia - 18th May (Day 11) - Barig Mountain to Sangiin Dalai Lake

We were up at 05:15 to the sound of screaming Saker Falcon, packed our bags and after a quick coffee headed back up Barig Mountain at 06:00 for a last try for Hodgson’s Bush-chat. After climbing the steep grassy and rock strewn slopes of the mountains in the vehicles we parked at the summit and […]

Nov 192016
 
A few herons – Jubail

Whilst birding the Jubail area recently I saw a few interesting herons. Many Grey Herons and Western Great Egrets were flying around but also in amongst them was a single Purple Heron. Numbers of Squacco Heron are also increasing as winter arrives with many juvenile birds. Wader numbers are decreasing but the odd Greater Sand […]

Jun 172016
 
Resident breeders and last migrants – Jubail

The last visit to the Jubail area produced few birds of note. Most of them were resident breeders as would be expected in the summer months but I did see two late migrants in the form of a couple of Spotted Flycathcers and a female Red-back Shrike. Resident breeding birds included plenty of Graceful Prinias […]

Mar 122016
 
Returning Waders – Jubail

The number of waders in the Jubail area is increasing with one or two quite unusual species being seen. An early Broad-billed Sandpiper was an unusual sighting by a small area of water alongside a track as was the well marked Black-winged Stilt seen previously that is still in the same area. More usual waders […]

Dec 092015
 
Waders, Winterers and residents – Sabkhat Al Fasl

My last trip to Sabkhat Al Fasl produced a number of waders of various species including the highest number of Marsh Sandpipers I have seen for a while. Most waders were Dunlins with good numbers of Common Ringed Plover scattered amongst them. A few smart plumaged Kentish Plovers were feeding around the shoreline and a […]

Dec 022015
 
Waders at low tide - Al Khobar Sea Front

I had a couple of spare hours between dropping the family off and picking them up again in town so went to the Al Khobar Sea Front. This area allows views over the tidal mud flats and when the tide is in can hold thousands of birds. The tide was completely out when I went […]

Oct 142014
 
Melanistic Montagu's Harrier and other Raptors

Here are some of the raptor photos we managed to see with my Swiss group from Arcatour last week. The wind direction swung around to give us moderate to strong Levante (easterlies) for five days and only died down on our last two days. Still, knowing what the migrating raptors do and where they will […]

Feb 062014
 
Winter-Spring

While Winter is still around (at least according to the date) and with it some very nice species like thisPallid Scops Owl which was found by Shachar few weeks ago at Wadi Shlomo and was still present yesterday (I was afraidI’mnot going to see one this winter…)and the wintering Bonelli’s and Eastern Imperial Eaglesare still […]

Jul 162013
 
Nearly Autumn

It is mid July and the daily average temp’ is around 35-37 deg’ with daily max’ temp raising to 40-42 (and sometime even higher up to 45-47). The nights are short with average temp of 27-29 with daily min’ temp of 22-24 deg andyet, another Summer is going to come to its end soon and […]

Apr 152013
 
Rain of Birds at last…

This spring has been very strange. After such a rainy winter with 4-6 floods in the southern Arava, we all expected that the desert will be filled with migrants. Then came March and by the end of it we were still looking hard to find birds in the Arava. Nevertheless there were many quality species […]