Spring is moving on and so does the birding in the area. At the IBRCE ringing station, numbers are stillmoderate but nevertheless some nice species are being caught (see Markus write up below) and there are growing numbers of Sylvia’s ticking throughout and new arrivals like Red-necked Phalaropes, Marsh Sandpipers, Greater Sand Plovers and more ‘feldegg’ Yellow &Citrine Wagtails.
And today the first Subalpine Warblerwhich was found by the team at Holland Park. Below are more updates from yesterday by Markus… “Ringing numbers have been developing quite slowly lately. However, today, Mar 5th, was a better day with a total of 96 birds caught including a stunning 2cy male Dead Sea Sparrow
and finally the first Rueppell’s Warbler for the season (a nice male was caught later – photos will come soon – ISH),this was a 2cy female.
Chiffchaff has still been the main ringing species but yesterday we caught the first Blackcap and numbers of other sylvias have also been increasing. Balkan Warblerhas been almost a daily catch and today we caught couple of Indian Silverbillsagain. Yesterday evening we managed to catch some Barn,Red-rumped Swallows and Sand Martins(2 very small individuals which fit perfectly to the ‘eilatea’ subspecies descriptions – ISH). 18 Barns, 14 Red-rumped and 2 Sand Martins altogether.
Yesterday two British guys, Will and Roger, arrived to reinforce our team for ten days – welcome aboard!. We did a quick afternoon birding to Yotvata seeing an adult male Pallid Harrier, similarly aged and sexed Hen Harrier and other common stuff. Today while ringing Will spotted a Sociable Plover passing by the station. I tried to scramble out as quickly as possible but unfortunately didn’t manage to see it.
Hopefully it won’t be the only observation of this species during the season. Later today, Itai found a winter plumaged Greater Sand Plover and a female Cyprus Warbler at K20 (while searching for these, Will & Roger found the White-tailed Plover & the first Red-necked Phalaropefor the season – ISH)and on Mar 3rd Noa and I saw two Oystercatchers flying by the North Beach.
On Feb 27th we luckily found the/aWhite-tailed Plover present at the saltpans near the IBRCE and after that it’s been observed twice also at K20. An Egyptian Goose was still present at K19 on Mar 1st and same time we also saw a 2cy Bonelli’s Eagle wandering around. A Barbary Falcon at Yotvata on Mar 2nd could also be worth mentioning. Yesterday we checked Ofira Park and Central Park which were quite empty but still holding two Masked Shrikes and five Red-throated Pipits.”