15 May 2013

Eurasian Hobby – Dhahran Hills

Whilst birding the spray fields I found an adult Eurasian Hobby sitting on the ground by a wet patch where the field had recently been flooded. This was the first time I had seen the species in Saudi Arabia sitting on the ground. I have only seen it a few times before with all records being in Dhahran Camp with the exception of a single bird seen at Sabkhat Al Fasl. Most records are from the spring migration period. The species is an uncommon passage migrant to the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia where it often hunts small birds and insects over wetlands and fields. Birds are mainly seen in the early morning and late evening.

The Eurasian Hobby is a long distance migrant from Europe and northern Asia to southern Africa. They migrate on a broad front crossing water freely, without concentrating along specific routes and is mainly regarded as an uncommon passage migrant throughout Arabia. Birds are mainly seen from early April until May and then from late August to early November.

Kuwait – Uncommon passage migrant.
Saudi Arabia – Uncommon passage migrant
Bahrain – Passage migrant, March to May and August to November
Qatar – Uncommon passage migrant early April to mid-June and late August to mid-October, first winter birds until mid-December
UAE - Uncommon spring and common to fairly common autumn migrant.
Oman – Fairly common migrant