3 Jul 2018

White-browed Coucal – Raydah Escarpment

Whilst birding the bottom of the Raydah Escarpment in June 2018, I heard and saw a White-browed Coucal Centropus superciliosus. I eventually found the bird and after waiting some time, it came out into the open allowing some reasonable photographic opportunities. The subspecies of White-browed Coucal we get in southwest Saudi Arabia is Centropus superciliosus superciliosus. They occur on Socotra and southwest Arabia as well as eastern Sudan, Eritrea, Ethiopia and western Somalia south through Kenya and northeast Uganda to northeast Tanzania. In Saudi Arabia, they are an uncommon breeding resident in the Tihamah and have been recorded on the Farasan Islands. They are normally located by their distinct song/call that is a series of 10 – 20 notes, descending in pitch and increasing in tempo. They may call from deep inside vegetation but occasionally do so from an exposed perch. The best places to see the species in the Kingdom appear to be Malaki Dam Lake and the bottom of the Raydah Escarpment where they can be seen near the village and in the dry wadi at the bottom of the escarpment. This is a difficult species to photograph well as they spend much of the time hidden in vegetation.
White-browed Coucal - Centropus superciliosus

White-browed Coucal - Centropus superciliosus

White-browed Coucal - Centropus superciliosus

White-browed Coucal - Centropus superciliosus

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