17 June 2020

Lockdown - Day 59; eBird Global Big Day

Week 19; 09 May 2020 - Pivot Fields and Sulaibikhat Bay

The timing of eBird Global Big Day was not ideal for Kuwait, as the next day was declared as Full Lockdown for 3-weeks, in response to the Covid crisis. So, this meant most would be out trying to stock up with provisions for the coming week(s). As a result, I was the only birder out in the field to try and knock up a decent count from Kuwait for the day.

Obviously the objective was to find and count birds, so photography took a back seat. As other sites were not really accessible, I spent most of the time really working the Pivot Field farm. I did take a few images, here the resident Crested Lark on it's favourite post

Crested Lark (Galerida cristata)

There were still a few lingering migrants about; Willow Warbler also struggling in the heat

Willow Warbler (Phylloscopus trochilus)

A few Red-backed Shrikes were still present

Red-backed Shrike (Lanius collurio)

and a Little Stint in cracking summer plumage

Little Stint (Calidris minuta)

I left the Pivots with 50+ species and headed to KISR Outfall and Sulaibikhat Bay for the late afternoon and the outgoing tide. It was a good call as I added a fair number of shorebirds and Gulls/Terns to the count. 

Kentish Plover are expected

Kentish Plover (Anarhynchus alexandrinus)

A number of Tern species were present; Gull-billed

Gull-billed Tern (Gelochelidon nilotica)

And Sandwich, although not obvious in this backlit image, but there were two birds foraging over the outfall at KISR

Common Tern (Sterna hirundo)

and more seen when I reached Sulaibikhat Bay, although quite distant

Sandwich Tern (Sterna sandvicensis)

Two House Crow's zipped by overhead, so that was a bonus tick for the day, although not welcome.

House Crow (Corvus splendens)

As did a Squacco Heron heading for it's roost

Squacco Heron (Ardeola ralloides)

I finished the day with an average 66 species, but at least had Kuwait as a participant and contributor, on this extra-ordinary Big Day

Once the tide slipped further out and no new birds were seen, I enjoyed some entertainment and antics from the two species of Mudskipper that are easily seen here. 

Boleophthalmus dussumieri defending his 'burrow' from Walton's Mudskipper (Periophthalmus waltoni)

This is the smaller Walton's Mudskipper which was pretty active

Walton's Mudskipper (Periophthalmus waltoni)

Quite a few Crabs were seen between the Mudskipper's - all part of the symbiotic relationship in this biome

Mud Dweller (Macropthalmus depressus)

I then had to call it a day and head home before curfew kicked in and the start of a long 3-weeks of lockdown, with only 2-hours/day for exercise.

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