03 February 2019

WTF (What the fog!)

Week 04; 26 January 2019 - Al Abraq, Jahra Farm, Sulaibikhat Bay and Sharq Harbour

Paul Scott and I decided to try Al Abraq in the west again, even though the last visit was a little slow with few birds around. On the way, we hit heavy desert fog which made for a slow drive to the farm and it took at least another hour for the sun to burn through, so visibility was somewhat reduced to start. The Tamerisk trees were all glistening with the heavy dew on their branches and leaves


The few species we saw on our last visit, were still present. A few Common Chiffchaff's were seen and heard

Common Chiffchaff (Phylloscopus collybita)

The pair of European Stonechat's were still holding territory in the same field as the last visit. A few images of the female

Female European Stonechat (Saxicola rubicola)

and the male
Male European Stonechat (Saxicola rubicola)

Other than that, not much else to be seen. Out theory is that following the record winter rains, there is so much suitable habitat across the desert that even the winter birds are dispersed.

Of course, if you were a botanist, this abundance of flora would be fascinating to study, as there are many different varieties adorning the desert.

Desert Flowers

One of the Hover Fly species 'drying' it's wings

Hoverfly sp.

We also watched a day old Camel calf still on wobbly legs, suckling from it's mother

Camel calf

Just as we were driving out, I caught a Sparrowhawk in my peripheral vision and we jumped out the car and managed to get a few BIF's pics as it circled above us, getting higher and higher.

Male Eurasian Sparrowhawk (Accipiter nisus)

We then headed back toward Kuwait, stopping at Jahra Farm. Here we found a small flock of Bank Myna's flying and calling around the farm - something seemed to have unsettled them. This image is not a composite, although it may appear to be so

Bank Myna (Acridotheres ginginianus)

Even Jahra Farm was quieter than usual, so we tried Sulaibikhat Bay, but the tide was still too far out. Cutting our losses, we made a last stop as Sharq Harbour in Kuwait City. Quite a number of Common Black-headed Gulls around the Dhow's in the harbour

Common Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)

A few larger Gulls also passed by overhead

Gull sp.

Gull sp.

As did Cormorants

Continental Great Cormorant (Phalacrocorax sinensis)

I saw a flash of blue dart across the water and land on the mooring rope of one of the Dhows - Common Kingfisher, an unexpected surprise in the City.

Common Kingfisher (Alcedo atthis)

Another slowish day all round, so the Kingfisher was a good bird to end it on. 

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