18 December 2019

Raptor fest at JPR

Week 49; 06 December 2019 - Jahra Pools Reserve

Like last week, I spent the a few hours at the end of the day cruising around the reserve. I had my first Black-necked Grebe's of the winter on the big pool

Black-necked Grebe (Podiceps nigricollis)

There was some aerial interaction between a 'territorial' Marsh Harrier and a Greater Spotted Eagle that was passing over

Western Marsh Harrier (Circus aeruginosus) vs Greater Spotted Eagle (Aquila clanga)

A little further along, some more aerial action. This time between the Western Osprey and a passing Steppe Buzzard

Western Osprey (Pandion haliaetus) vs Steppe Buzzard (Buteo b. vulpinus)

I have found this Daurian Shrike on the same bush each time I have come to the reserve, at least this time the light came from the right direction

Daurian Shrike (Lanius isabellinus)

An injured female Eastern Stonechat in the golden glow of the late afternoon light

Eastern Stonechat (Saxicola maurus)

While I was photographing the Stonechat, a Peregrine came blitzing past overhead, these just record shots that I was quite amazed to get given it's speed

Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus)

Down at the beach, a Greater-spotted had taken out a Black-headed Gull and a number of others joined it to try and get in on the action - a little like Vultures at a kill. Once they arrived, the Eagle with the Gull mantled over its food, but the others did manage to sneak a piece now and then. One of the birds that arrived, appeared slightly smaller, a lighter brown than his compatriots and I though had more visible stovepipe legs. Unfortunately, the birds were really a long way off in dying light and even 800mm wasn't enough to give much more detail for a confirmed ID

Greater Spotted Eagle (Greater Spotted Eagle (Aquila clanga), bird on the left is the one in question

Greater Spotted Eagle (Greater Spotted Eagle (Aquila clanga), bird on the right is the one in question

Heading back to the gate as the sun set, I had a special visitor - a single Western Cattle Egret against the pastel orange glow in the sky

Western Cattle Egret (Bubulcus ibis)

I savoured the moment and got all creative with the clouds and sun as it subsided

Jahra Sunset

Jahra Sunset and Common Black-headed Gulls returning to roost

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