14 March 2016

White-throated Kingfisher – Dhahran Hills

Whilst birding my local patch on 11 March I found an adult White-throated Kingfisher in the trees around Dhahran Hills swimming pool. The bird was very vocal and called regularly from its main perch of a very tall palm tree. This is the second White- throated Kingfisher I have seen on my patch after a wintering bird last year in the palm trees by the pond on the golf course. White-throated Kingfisher is a scarce bird in the Eastern Province with most records coming from more northerly areas such as Sabkhat Al Fasl but they have been seen as far south as Dhahran in previous years. Up until the end of the 1980’s there had only been two records from the Eastern Province, both from the Dhahran area but there have been more sighting since mainly from the Jubail to Al Khobar region although a northern record from Jebal Nayriyyah and a southerly record from Udhailiyyah have also occurred in the last two years. This winter there are birds at Sabkhat Al Fasl and Deffi Park, Jubail as well as Dhahran making it another good winter for the species. The species is certainly becoming more common in the region and hopefully it will not be long before they become resident and start breeding as happens in Riyadh.
White-throated Kingfisher