21 August 2013

Autumn Colour and Cunning

Week 33, 11 August 2013 - Jahra Pool Reserve (Click to enlarge image)

I have been off-line, as I needed to upgrade an ageing HDD on my laptop which meant and upgrade of the o/s and re-installtion and set-up of everything else. Earlier in the month, I visited Jahra Pools and there were encouraging signs of migration in terms of birds with colour - finally.

However, one of the other reasons for visiting was to try and re-locate the 3rd Pygmy Cormorant for Kuwait that was seen the day before. The number of European Rollers had increased substantially since my last visit - although most were pretty wary

European Roller (Coracias garrulus)
Wagtails were represented by Yellow and a couple of Citrine Wagtails

Citrine Wagtail (Motacilla citreola)

A younger Citrine Wagtail (Motacilla citreola)
Two species of Kingfisher were seen and I saw the Common Kingfisher successfully catch a few fish, albeit from a distance, so excuse the poor quality 

Common Kingfisher (Alcedo atthis) with brunch
I had no luck with Pygmy today, but the over-summering Great Cormorant was still about.

Great Cormorant (Phalacrocorax carbo) fly-over
I watched a Little Ringed Plover as it went about foraging for food in the mud and saw how it uses one foot to wriggle its toes in the mud to either feel for or disturb food just below the surface.

Little Ringed Plover (Charadrius dubius)
There were numbers of Heron in the various pools and I spent some time with this Little Bittern as it stealthily and cunningly hunted for food. Sadly, out of the 5 attempts I saw, it was not successful once!

Little Bittern (Ixobrychus minutus) portrait

Little Bittern in 'stealth' mode

More miss than hit for this Little Bittern
Not quite so for this Purple Heron, with 5 out 7 attempts successful. It was interesting to compare the hunting methods of both species and for sure the longer neck on the Purple Heron proved to be an advantage in terms of 'striking' speed

Hunting Purple Heron (Ardea purpurea)

Success, but you need a few of these to quell the hunger pains

There were some Warblers in the reedbeds and these were a mixture of juvenile birds and moulting adults - so identification was difficult and in some cases not conclusive

Moulting Indian Reed Warbler (Acrocephalus s. brunnescens)?

Moulting Indian Reed Warbler (Acrocephalus s. brunnescens)?

Basra Reed Warbler (Acrocephalus griseldis)

Possibly European Reed or Syke's - the long extended supercilium is unusual

See ya
So, if I have mis-identified, rectification and clarification is always appreciated

The Upchers Warbler sat on the fence swaying and fanning it's tail, which is one of the habits associated with this species

Upcher's Warbler (Hippolais languida)
There was a mix of Little, Whiskered and White-winged Terns foraging over the larger body of water

White-winged Tern (Chlidonias leucopterus)
As usual Dragonflies were in abundance and with the right background, they do make interesting subjects

A drive through the Casarina Tree's provided a stunning male White-throated Robin resting in the shade, one of my favourite birds and a real splash of Autumn colour

Stunning male White-throated Robin (Irania gutturalis)

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