7 Sep 2013

European Bee-eaters moving through – Dhahran Hills


The ‘patch’ has livened up slightly now September has arrived. As the temperature start to drop slightly, more passage migrants start to occur and the first groups of European Bee-eaters are now moving through the camp, although they have been seen elsewhere in the Eastern Province earlier. Normally you are alerted to their presence by their calls and then often they come down to rest in small numbers. The largest group I have seen so far is 23 birds with 35 birds being the most seen in a single trip. Many of the birds are juveniles but they still add a splash of colour to the days birding.
European Bee-eater
European Bee-eater
European Bee-eater
Other passing birds include small numbers of Yellow Wagtails and Isabelline wheatears with four seen on one day. Plenty of Namaqua Doves are now in the trees around the dried up pond including a number of juveniles showing again they have had a good breeding season. One Dove that has not been seen in good numbers this year has been European Turtle Dove, but one came down to drink at the wet ditch which is the first one I have seen for over a week.
Namaqua Dove - juvenile
European Turtle Dove
Other birds seen in the ditch were the normal waders of Kentish Plover, Wood Sandpiper, Common Sandpiper, Green Sandpiper and Little Stint, but a Common Snipe was a new addition giving very good views. A few additional waders were on the settling pond including two new Ruff and three Marsh Sandpipers.
Common Snipe
Common Snipe

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