2 Feb 2012

Great Crested Gebes - Dhahran Hills

The reeds around the edge of the percolation pond are growing back quite quickly and today a pair of Great Crested Grebes were looking around them to see if they can find a suitable nesting area. Great Crested Grebe is not a common bird in Saudi Arabia although In April – May 1999 a pair of Great Crested Grebes built several nest platforms at the percolation pond (Lobley 1999) and this was probably the first time the species had attempted to breed in Arabia. Unfortunately the attempt was unsuccessful, probably due to fluctuating water levels and casual recreational disturbance.
 Great Crested Grebe
Great Crested Grebe

Other birds that were seen included today were very limited due to the strong south-easterly wind that was blowing that made visibility low due to the dust in the air. Six Eurasian Coot were on the pond along with 300+ Common Black-headed Gulls and 48 Steppe Gulls. A couple of hardy Common Chiffchaff were braving the wind in the trees to the side of the pond but there was not much else. The sand/dust was getting in my eyes and I cannot say I really enjoyed being out, but wit weather like this someting unusual may turn up so I went out birding anyway.

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