30 April 2014

Some good birds north of Jubail – Bird records by Dave Kilmister

Dave sent me a couple of e-mails this week and mentioned he had, had three new species at the water treatment reed beds this week. (The water level is below the gravel, so no waders). A White-throated Robin, Common Cuckoo, and a Rose-coloured Starling. Although he had heard bee-eaters a couple of weeks ago, he saw his first Blue-cheeked Bee-eater for the season last week. Another pair of Orlotan Buntings has also arrived after the first pair that where seen about three weeks ago. The Redstarts and Blackcaps that were present seem to have moved on. Rose-coloured Starling is an unusual bird for the Eastern Province and one I have not seen myself yet. Dave mentioned he saw the Starling with the sun rising behind it and it did not stay long enough for him to get in a better position to take a photo. Dave did manage to get a good photo of the Common Cuckoo that he has kindly allowed me to use on my website.
Common Kingfisher
Dave also went to Ash Sharqiyah over the weekend and had a great day. There were a lot of Spanish Sparrows; and he was not sure if it was them or House Sparrows that were nesting in a stand of trees but it was very noisy. The bee-eaters have returned, much to the annoyance of the farm bee-keeper. There were Collared Pratincoles, a first for Dave but only a few Little Grebes on the lake which was very quiet. The only raptors were a Common Kestrel and a Pallid Harrier both giving very good views. Apart from this, all the usual birds were seen, although only one Yellow Wagtail for 26 species in total. There was also an Arabian Red Fox – Dave has seen plenty of tracks but that was his first sighting out there.