26 August 2015

A new addition to the south

Week 33, 15 August 2015 - Sabah Al Ahmad Sea City

I was hopeful that this visit would be a little more productive than last month; it was, but not by much more.

A Whiskered Tern when I stopped at the reed habitat. Some surface water was drying out, leaving the stranded fish easy picking for this marsh tern (although a decent marsh was very far from where we were)

Hunting Whiskered Tern (Chlidonias hybrida)

You need to eat a lot of these to bulk up!

The resident Arabian Spiny-tailed Lizard gave me the beady eye I as I drove past.

Arabian Spiny-tailed Lizard (Uromastyx aegyptia microlepis)
A small family of Namaqua Dove were feeding on the side of the road on the way to the Marina

Male Namaqua Dove (Oena capensis)
Once out on the boat, we conducted a transect from Khiran to Mina Al Zour finding large numbers of Lesser Crested Tern

Lesser Crested Tern (Sterna bengalensis) - post breeding dispersal
As well as fair numbers of Socotra Cormorant, including a few adult birds which are not as common as the first year birds.

Adult Socotra Cormorant (Phalacrocorax nigrogularis)
Before returning to the Marina, I found a flock of 14 Steppe Gulls, which are winter visitors to Kuwait - but these have arrived somewhat earlier

Steppe Gull (Larus f. barabensis)
Coming in to the Marina, a couple of Eurasian Whimbrel were seen on the lagoon beaches

Eurasian Whimbrel (Numenius p. phaeopus)
In another trench, I found a small flock of Black-winged Stilts

Black-winged Stilt (Himantopus himantopus)
In the coastal zone, there was not much around apart from a few Kentish Plovers and Western Reef Herons 

Western Reef Heron (Egretta g. schistacea)
I did find two Godwit's, initially I though a Bar-tailed and Black-tailed due to the size difference and bill length and shape - but when they flew, it turned out that both were Bar-tailed. The only relevant explanation I could find on-line was that female birds are sometimes bigger than males?

Bar-tailed Godwit (Limosa lapponica) - note the size difference
Learn something everyday!

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