14 Feb 2013

Corn Buntings – Dhahran Hills


The spray fields have been very wet recently and spraying has been going on almost constantly. This is good in it makes the area green and good for birds, but bad in the fact that you can not bird the area properly as it is impossible to enter the fields without getting a soaking. Yesterday the spray heads were only putting out a small amount of water and as I saw the Caspian Stonechat I thought I would attempt to enter the fields in the hope of getting a few pictures of the bird. This idea did not work out as planned as I found two Corn Buntings in the field and started following them instead. Corn Bunting is still an unusual bird in Dhahran although i have seen a few every winter/spring I have been in Saudi Arabia. I managed a couple of photos but unfortunately they were slightly into the sun but turned out reasonable. Then I could not find the Caspian Stonechat just a Common Stonechat that would not allow close approach at all. Other birds in the spray fields included 20+ Water Pipits and three Tawny Pipits. A few Caspian Gulls and Steppe Gulls flew over going to roost somewhere and a Eurasian Sparrowhawk put in a fast flypast across the fields before circling up high in the sky and off.
Corn Bunting
Corn Bunting
Eurasian Sparrowhawk
Eurasian Sparrowhawk

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