2 Jul 2015

Sallal al-Dahna - Tanoumah

Whilst in the southwest of Saudi Arabia Phil and I visited Sallal al-Dahna an upland valley at 1955 metres above sea level on the outskirts of Tanoumah. This is a good location to see Arabian (Asir) Magpie that is generally regarded as a sub-species of Eurasian Magpie but sometimes treated as a separate species. They are becoming increasingly rare with the total population estimated to be between 135-500 birds. The valley holds mature acacia and Juniper trees and has a permanent water supply at one end. Our visit was to try to get good views and photos of the Arabian Magpie. You normally locate the species by hearing its loud contact calls that to my ears sounds very different to the calls of Eurasian Magpie, and this was the case on both days we visited the site. We saw the birds late one evening and again after lunchtime and although we got reasonable views we did not get really close to the birds. There were at least two birds present and possibly three with one being a well grown youngster with browner overall plumage. Other birds seen In the valley included House Sparrow, Palestine Sunbird, Shining Sunbird, Gambaga Flycatcher, Grey-headed Kingfisher, Arabian Babbler, Brown Woodland Warbler, White-spectacles Bulbul, Yemen Thrush, Abyssinian White-eye, Fan-tailed Raven and Long-legged Buzzard.
Arabian Magpie
Arabian Magpie
Arabian Magpie
Arabian Magpie
Arabian Magpie
Arabian Magpie
Arabian Magpie
Arabian Magpie
Arabian Babbler
Arabian Babbler
Grey-headed Kingfisher
Grey-headed Kingfisher

No comments:

Post a Comment