09 May 2016

A bowl of Wheatears

Week 13, 26 March 2016 - Sabah Al Ahmad Sea City

It is great to get to your location, just as the sun is starting to rise - and the world around you is starting to stir.

There is a large House Sparrow roost in the reed beds and some of the males were just starting to fluff up and sing. But, as soon as the sun hits the reeds they are off, to wherever it is they spend the day around the project.

Male House Sparrow (Passer domesticus)
Today, Wheatears had arrived in numbers (collectively known as a bowl or a shaft of Wheatears) and these were made up predominantly of Isabelline 

Isabelline Wheatear (Oenanthe isabellina)
and Pied
Female Pied Wheatear (Oenanthe pleschanka)

Male Pied Wheatear (Oenanthe pleschanka)
followed by Northern 

Female Northern Wheatear (Oenanthe oenanthe)

Male Northern Wheatear (Oenanthe oenanthe)
and a single Black-eared

Male Eastern Black-headed Wheatear (Oenanthe h. melanoleuca)
I continued my good fortune in finding Desert Finch again..

Male Desert Finch (Rhodospiza obsoleta)
Other good spring migrants included; Eurasian Wryneck

Eurasian Wryneck (Jynx torquilla)
Common Rock Thrush

Female Common Rock Thrush (Monticola saxatilis)
and a male Semi-collared Flycatcher that was difficult to pin down

Male Semi-collared Flycatcher (Ficedula semitorquata)
Aside from a Mauryan Grey Shrike

Mauryan Grey Shrike (Lanius lahtora pallidirostris)
I also recorded quite a few Woodchat Shrikes

Woodchat Shrike (Lanius senator)

Once out on the boat, a few lingering Caspian Gulls were seen on the beaches, these wont be staying much longer

Caspian Gull (Larus cachinnans)
Shorebirds were represented by Grey Plover

Grey Plover (Pluvialis squatarola)
and Common Sandpiper

Common Sandpiper (Actitis hypoleucos)
and a little later a Little Egret

Little Egret (Egretta garzetta)
Kentish Plovers were seen with young and will probably raise another brood in the coming months

Kentish Plover (Charadrius alexandrinus) with young
I found quite a few 7-spot Ladybirds on some desert scrub which was a new addition for the insect checklist for the south..

7-spot Ladybird (Coccinella 7-punctata)

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