19 August 2018

What a difference a week makes!

Week 10; 09 March 2018 - Green Island, Mutla'a Ranch and Jahra Pools

Today I was joined by Maia Stark (a Y8 AIS student from Arizona) and her mom Lydia to explore some local sites and enjoy both resident birds and whatever migrants may have arrived in the week.

Since we met at the beach club, we made a quick stop at Green Island to enjoy the breeding Rüppell's Weaver and to get Maia onto a Red-vented Bulbul.

We then continued north and headed to Mutla'a Ranch where we could enjoy a slow walk around the farm where the highlight was a gorgeous male Semi-collared Flycatcher that gave us really great views

Male Semi-collared Flycatcher (Ficedula semitorquata)

Overhead we had a few migrating Common Swift

Common Swift (Apus apus)

On the way out of the farm we had a kettle of migrating raptors pass by overhead which was the real highlight for both Maia and Lydia; the majority were Steppe Eagles

Steppe Eagle (Aquila nipalensis)

But there were also a few Short-toed Snake Eagle's thermaling a little higher than the Steppe's

Short-toed Snake-Eagle (Circaetus gallicus)

At the Pools, we had Siberian Stonechat foraging from the reeds

Male Siberian Stonechat (Saxicola m. hemprichii)

And our second Semi-collared Flycatcher

Male Semi-collared Flycatcher (Ficedula semitorquata)

Whilst some Garganey flushed from one of the pools behind the reeds

A pair of Garganey (Anas querquedula)

On the way to the beach, Green Sandpiper in a quite pool

Green Sandpiper (Tringa ochropus)

and Little Ringed Plover, in a large pool just off the road - they should breed again in the reserve this summer

Little Ringed Plover (Charadrius dubius)

In the Sabkha just before the beach, we had a stunning male Eastern Black-eared Wheatear

Male Eastern Black-eared Wheatear (Oenanthe h. melanoleuca)

Whilst on the coast, Great Black-headed Gull's resplendent in breeding plumage, flying over the beach

Great Black-headed Gull (Leucophaeus ichthyaetus)

And then to end the day, a substantial flock of Greater Flamingo's which was another highlight of the day for Maia and Lydia

Greater Flamingo (Phoenicopterus roseus)

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