19 December 2018

A wild Pipit chase

Week 50; 15 December 2018 - Pivot Fields

Paul Scott and I met Neil Tovey at the Pivot Fields just after sunrise on a glorious winter's morning - no wind, clear sky and just cool enough for a fleece. Visiting birders had reported a possible Blyth's Pipit earlier in the week - a first for Kuwait if accepted by KORC. So we thought it was worth a try to see if it was still around. After meeting at the gate, we split up to better cover the farm. The Daurian Shrike seen yesterday was still present.

Daurian Shrike (Lanius isabellinus)

Neil was the first to get onto a big Pipit that flushed in one of the more open fields and we joined him to try and re-locate it. We managed to find the bird, but it was distant and flighty. Paul and I managed to get some record images that had us all a little uncertain. Certainly the shape of the dark centers in the median wing coverts seemed to change shape, depending how the bird was standing and it was difficult to assess the size of the bill at the distance we were and we never managed to see the legs exposed. We later concluded that this was a Richard's Pipit

Richard's Pipit (Anthus richardi)

We then got onto another or 2nd bird and this was a lot more approachable - no doubting that this bird was a Richard's

Richard's Pipit (Anthus richardi)

We suspected there were definitely two, but possibly three birds present amongst Water and a few Meadow Pipits as well as Skylarks and Crested Larks. While scanning the fields we had a single Eurasian Golden Plover give a low fly by - this bird is still a rarity in Kuwait

Eurasian Golden Plover (Pluvialis apricaria)

After Neil left, Paul and I continued finding a couple of raptors overhead as the temps warmed up a little. A few Black-eared/Eastern Black Kites

Black-eared Kite (Milvus m. lineatus)

With a Steppe Buzzard together with them

Black-eared Kite (Milvus m. lineatus) and Steppe Buzzard (Buteo b. vulpinus)

We also had 3 Long-legged Buzzards

Long-legged Buzzard (Buteo rufinus)

The highlight though, was a magnificent Eastern Imperial Eagle

Eastern Imperial Eagle (Aquila heliaca)

Today there were two Indian Rollers, but still we weren't able to get as close as we would have liked

Indian Roller (Coracias benghalensis)

After this we called it a day, but agreed that this is one of the better sites in Kuwait and are really fortunate to have access again. Sadly Jahra Pools seems to be a little neglected in terms of both reed and road management lately.

This is my last post for 2018 and I'm really pleased to have overcome the backlog and am now current. Wishing all who celebrate, a very happy Christmas may 2019 be all that you wish for and more. 

South Africa here I come for 2-weeks!

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