30 Sep 2016

Eurasian Wryneck trapped and ringed - Jubail

Whilst ringing on 23 September Nicole and I trapped and ringed a Eurasian Wryneck. We have only caught one Eurasian Wryneck at the site before on 10 April 2015, so this was a pleasant surprise when seen in the net. They are regular migrants through the region although are an uncommon passage migrants in the Eastern Province where we ring. They are beautiful birds in the hand and are very gentle. They also move their heads around in a very unusual manner. This is the first Eurasian Wryneck I have seen in the Eastern Province this year making the experience even better.
Eurasian Wryneck

Eurasian Wryneck

Eurasian Wryneck

29 Sep 2016

A few migrants in Dhahran – Records by Paul Wells

Migration has started picking up, and now there is a break in the very high humidity it allowed Paul to take his camera out. Paul has been seeing shrikes for the last week or so including Woodchat, Turkestan and Mauryan Grey Shrike. Paul has also been seeing a number of hirundines for several weeks that were impossible to photograph, but were mainly Sand Martins. Also seen and photographed were Greater Short-toed Larks a species not so commonly seen in Dhahran although common in the spray fields nearby. Kentish Plover was another species seen by Paul with many birds passing through the region at present.
Woodchat Shrike
Woodchat Shrike
Mauryan Grey Shrike
Mauryan Grey Shrike
Greater Short-toed Lark
Greater Short-toed Lark
Kentish Plover
Kentish Plover

28 Sep 2016

Two Yellow Wagtails trapped and ringed - Jubail

Whilst ringing at Jubail recently I trapped and ringed two Yellow Wagtails. This species is relatively common in the region during passage periods in both spring and autumn although more common during the spring. They are seldom ringed though, as they are very good at avoiding the nets and mainly are caught in double panel rather than four panel nets.This time both birds were caught in the bigger nets and were a pleasant surprise. Trying to work out the subspecies involved is a difficult proposition when birds are not adult males in spring but it is thought both birds that were trapped were beema / flava types.
Yellow Wagtail

Yellow Wagtail

Yellow Wagtail

27 Sep 2016

A couple of good birds in Al Khobar – Records by Mark Jasmin

Mark found a Common Kingfisher and a Common Whitethroat near the South Corniche harbour in Al Khobar. Mark also found some Whimbrels, Ruddy Turnstone, Common Ringed Plovers, Common Redshanks, Common Greenshank, Black-winged Stilts, Terns and other waders. Mark kindly sent me the daetails and some of his photos and has allowed me to use them on my website two of which are shown below.
Common Kingfisher
Common Kingfisher
Common Whitethroat
Common Whitethroat

26 Sep 2016

Three Savis Warblers trapped and ringed - Jubail

Whilst ringing at Sabkhat Al Fasl ten Savi’s Warbler we have trapped and ringed in the last two years. Birds have occurred mainly in the spring with seven records from 20 March until 18 April and three in the autumn from 26 September until 24 October. This year we trapped and ringed three birds on 23 September 2016. Savi’s Warbler previously had a status until this ringing project as a scarce passage migrant but our ringing records show the species is in fact an uncommon passage migrant through the Eastern Province of the Kingdom at least. The subspecies fuscus we get in the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia is darker coloured, has more obvious under-tail covert tips and some streaking/spotting on the throat making it look more like a River Warbler than the nominate subspecies. The throat markings are not as dark and well defined and the undertail coverts more warm toned than in River Warbler though and the supercilium is more obvious behind the eye. The photos below show two of the three birds trapped.