First returning Bluethroats – Sabkhat Al Fasl

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The Red-spotted is an uncommon wintering species in with birds wintering at Sabkhat Al Fasl each year, where it is locally common. The first birds return to Sabkhat Al Fasl around the same time and appear to be females with ringing data suggesting they first return in mid-October.

A week or so later males are also seen with females and numbers then build up throughout the winter with birds staying around until the end of March to early April. We have retrap data showing that some birds use the same small area of Sabkhat Al Fasl each winter returning to exactly the same spot.

Whilst ringing last weekend we caught a female and a male Bluethroat, it is not possible to tell it they are Red-spotted or White-spotted unless they are adult males.

We have caught many Red-spotted Bluethroats but only two White-spotted, with White-spotted being a scarce passage migrant and winter visitor.

Elsewhere in Saudi Arabia birds have been seen from August to May.

 

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Jem Babbington

Jem Babbington

Jem Babbington is a keen birder and amateur photographer located in Dhahran, Eastern Saudi Arabia where he goes birding every day. Jem was born in England and is a serious local patch and local area birder who has been birding for almost forty years and has birded in more than fifty countries. Jem is learning to ring birds in Bahrain as a perfect way to learn more about the birds of the area. Saudi Arabia is a very much under-watched and under-recorded country.

Jem Babbington

Jem Babbington

Jem Babbington is a keen birder and amateur photographer located in Dhahran, Eastern Saudi Arabia where he goes birding every day. Jem was born in England and is a serious local patch and local area birder who has been birding for almost forty years and has birded in more than fifty countries. Jem is learning to ring birds in Bahrain as a perfect way to learn more about the birds of the area. Saudi Arabia is a very much under-watched and under-recorded country.

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