13 October 2013

Pallid Harrier – Dhahran Hills

The small trickle of raptors continued on the ‘patch’ with a male Pallid Harrier and a Common Kestrel seen over the spray fields. The Harrier was initially seen flushing all the waders from the percolation pond and then flew around and went hunting over the spray fields. The Common Kestrel was also hunting over the spray fields but did not stay long before moving off. Raptors have been scarce this year but in the last week a number of birds have been seen including Marsh Harrier and Steppe Eagle. Other birds seen in the spray fields included five Western Cattle Egrets, three Spotted Flycatchers, several Yellow Wagtails, a juvenile Purple Heron and the first Stonechat of the year but it was seen briefly and sub-species was not ascertained.
Pallid Harrier
Common Kestrel
Western Cattle Egret

The wet ditch had very little but a single Common Redshank was a nice surprise as they are not too common here. Most waders were on the settling pond with three Temminck’s Stints, 20 Little Stints, three Wood sandpipers, 15 Ruff, five Black-winged Stilts, one Common Snipe and one Green Sandpiper. The scrubby desert area had a couple of Pied Wheatears, three Isabelline Wheatears and a Daurian Shrike.
Common Redshank
Daurian Shrike