Migration is just getting better…



The recentweather with all these southern winds and clouds of dust havesettledand many migrants are evident all over.

On Sat’ morning I took my young son, Raz who is only 2.5 years old to have a short drive and walk in the desert to see what can we find after the storm. A short walk it was, but very productive nevertheless. We started at Km 33 where we had the beautiful song of aHoopoe Larkand good views of bothAsian Desert Warblerand my first for this seasonBlack-eared Wheatear. In the sky, a flock of 250Eurasian Craneswere heading north giving their very diagnostic calls.Earlier in the morning, a friend was photographing nearby a group ofThick-billedandBar-tailed Larks.

We than drove south and on our way spotted many Sylvia’s includingRuppell’s, Eastern Orpheanand the most commonSardinainandLesserWhitethroats.

When we reach the K 20 ponds, Raz was very happy to point all the Flamingos and wasshowinghis first steps in identification when he asked “what are these Flamingos in the water which are not Flamingos”? aiming on a group ofShelducks…

Later we also spotted male and femaleHooded WheatearsandbeautifulKentish Plovers.

As we were driving to leave the ponds, I noticed a bush ofTaily WeedOchradenus baccatusfilled with Sylvia warblers. In this single bush, we had at least 3Cyprus Warblers(2 males and 1 female),Eastern Orphean, Lesser Whitethroatsand a second female typeHooded Wheatear.

In the evening we scheduled to meet up with our volunteers: Will, the David’s and Jason (who were having a great day up in the Negev), Rune who had a maleCrested Honey Buzzardcoming to roost at the Date plantation north of the IBRCE, tocheck the Yotveta fields for somenight-life.

We ended this evening after very close encounters with twoEgyptian Nightjars(first for the season),Pale Scops Owl-not often one gets to see these wonderful creatures hunting in a field (thanks to Shay for these superb photos of it when it perched),some 10Stone-Curlewsand great views ofGoldenJackals, Red Foxes, Cape Haresand a possibleStripedHyenawhich was too far for confirmation.

As much as we tried, we couldn’t locate thePharaohEagle Owlbut hey, we need to leave something for their next visit…

Today (Sunday) Rune the Danish birder reported of an Ad maleRock Thrushat Yotveta.

Spring is so good around Eilat!

Itai Shanni

Itai Shanni

Itai Shanni is the coordinator of the Eilat Birding Blog, which is jointly written by the Israeli Ornithological Centre (IOC) and the International Birding and Research Centre Eilat (IBRCE). Itai is working to promote bird and wildlife conservation throughout this area. As an Israeli A licensed ringer, he also gives support for the IBRCE staff when needed. Itai has also developed a real passion for Odonata watching and spends many hot hours chasing also Dragonflies and Damselflies.

Itai Shanni

Itai Shanni

Itai Shanni is the coordinator of the Eilat Birding Blog, which is jointly written by the Israeli Ornithological Centre (IOC) and the International Birding and Research Centre Eilat (IBRCE). Itai is working to promote bird and wildlife conservation throughout this area. As an Israeli A licensed ringer, he also gives support for the IBRCE staff when needed. Itai has also developed a real passion for Odonata watching and spends many hot hours chasing also Dragonflies and Damselflies.

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Glenn Bartley

Itai, good that you went for a walk in the desert on Saturday. You captured a rich assortment of bird species as well as some great mammals. What a wonderful experience for your son to be exposed to such diversity at such an early age. These are the sounds and sights, which last a lifetime. Thanks for sharing.

Itai Shani
Itai Shani

Thanks Ken, usually I’m trying not to push the kids into nature and let them choose their way. I’m happy that this time the little guy was enjoying and is actually now asking to go and listen to Hoopoe Larks when ever we go out…