01 August 2014

Slow boat to Qaru

Week 31, 30 July 2014 - Qaru Island

A few Biodiversity East members and friends had the opportunity of joining a dive charter departing from Khiran to Qaru Island for a days exploration and snorkeling.

A full Silsan departed at 9am and we chugged our way East across the Arabian Gulf to Qaru in pretty choppy seas with some big swells that had a few passengers looking decidedly 'green in the gills' - I was sea watching in the hope of some pelagic bird species, but only had Socotra Cormorant, Lesser Crested Terns and Bridled Terns. 

Bridled Tern (Onychoprion anaethetus)
After 3-hours we finally reached Qaru where the weather had settled a little. 
As we weren't diving, the tender boat took us to shore and we had some time to explore this very small but important sandy island. No Terns breed on this island, but rather on Kubbar which is north of Qaru.

Of course I checked for signs of passerine migration and found Rufous-tailed Scrub Robin and 7 Eurasian Hoopoe roosting and flying around the radio mast.

Eurasian Hoopoe (Upupa epops)
Around the Coastguard Building there were a few Eastern Olivaceous Warbler

Eastern Olivaceous Warbler (Iduna pallida)
And a single Yellow Wagtail feeding on a cricket of which there has been a huge influx over the past week - crickets literally everywhere

Yellow Wagtail (Motacilla flava flava)
There is a species of Dragonfly on the island that I havent seen on the mainland - so a bit of DIF (dragonfly in flight) action - not that easy either!

Dragonfly sp

After a bit of snorkeling where the colours of reef fish are as amazing as some of the passerine migrants it was time to head back to Khiran on the Silsan.

Silsan Dive Boat
Slowly, very slowly Qaru Island faded into the distance

Qaru Island
Fortunately the wind had abated so it was a smoother trip home and the passengers were able to keep their lunch inside, instead of feeding the fish.

Bridled Tern heading to a roost


  1. Silsan do offer trips to Qaroh? I thought only to Failaka and Kubbar. Or maybe I was in the wrong place to ask?

    What's the procedure and how much would it cost for one passenger? They take off from Shaab port?

  2. WOW!
    What a blog you've go here!
    Congratulations for your gorgeous pictures!
    Your dragonfly in flight, brilliant pics by the way, is Sympetrum fonscolombii, a great traveler!
    I see you publish too on FOW! ;-)
    Enjoy your weekend!