26 June 2012

Breeding Little Bittern - Sabkhat Al Fasl

A very ealry morning trip to Sabkhat Al Fasl at the weekend produced few birds, although a couple of good records were noted. A juvenile Little Bittern was seen perched in the reeds at the back of the site showing that the species has breed again here this year. An adult male was seen in flight in the same area as the juvenile was seen in.
Little Bittern (juvenile)

Other good birds seen included a Squacco Heron in full breeding plumage, which are much more attractive than the drab winter plumaged birds that are normally seen. This bird was seen feeding out in the open in a small area of water near to the water treatment plant, which was also unusual. Purple Swamphens are now being seen regularly again with adult birds walking out in the open, although nearly always in close proximity to reed-beds. The only warblers seen were Clamorous Reed Warblers and Caspian Reed Warblers in small numbers. A single Western Osprey was the only bird of prey seen with two different birds located. One was eating a tilapia fish it had caught and allowed reasonably close views; although they never let you get too close. Wader numbers were low with nine Pied Avocets and two Ruddy Turnstones being the best birds.
Western Osprey

Squacco Heron

Squacco Heron

Purple Swamphen