Red-billed Tropicbirds at the gulf

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Late June 2001, while writing my final work for my B.Sc and before leaving Israel and going to start my life in East Africa, I was standing on North Beach in Eilat together with Barak Granit and admiring my first ever Red-billed Tropicbirdwhich came in from nowhere and gave me my farewell present from Israel.

Last Sat’ (12 years and one month later) I went out with Avi Meir and Ilan Biel to watch (and photograph) birds at the gulf. Once again, out of the blue sky an adult Red-billed Tropicbird which was later joined by another adult bird, flew overhead (too far and fast for the photographers) and made me a very very happy man. What an amazing bird with its long fluttering tail!

Since we did not get any photo of these birds we had to settle for a pair of White-cheeked Terns who were very friendly and allowed very close views.

Red-billed Tropicbird, Phaethon aethereus

Red-billed Tropicbird, Phaethon aethereus

By the end of the day we added also 3-4 Bridled Terns, 2 Arctic and 1 Pomarine Skua.

Migration is starting to pick up very slow still, but surely there are new birds arriving daily:
Juv’Black-headed Gulls(the closest breeding is probably in Turkey?!)

Juv’ Black-headed Gulls


Wader numbers are growing steadily with the first Little Stints & Greenshanksjoining the groups of Green & Wood Sandpipers. The first Blue-cheeked Bee-eaterswere found today by Yaniv Basher and since i was around I’ve managed to get a ‘digiIPhone’ record shot…

Blue-cheeked Bee-eater

Namaqua Dovesare still being spotted daily in various placesandStriatedHeronsare chasing one another when not fishing ormodelling…

Namaqua Dove

Striated Heron

Striated Heron

Striated Heron

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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