17 Mar 2016

Wintering Masked Shrike still present – Deffi Park

I found a wintering Masked Shrike a few weeks ago in Deffi Park, Jubail that has been seen every weekend since by various birders and photographers. The bird has kept faithful to a very small area of the park, and is also very vocal, making it easier to see. The Masked Shrike is an uncommon but regular passage migrant and increasingly regular winter visitor to Saudi Arabia. Winter records have come from all areas of the Kingdom but are more common in the southwest and the Eastern Province although they remain scarce at this time of year in both areas. Birds pass mainly in April to May and September although there are records from all months of the year and during this period they are much commoner than they are in winter.
Masked Shrike

Masked Shrike


  1. Hi Jem! I'm currently visiting the Dhahran/Dammam area, and was researching the different types of birds that are in this area and where I can find them, when I can across you blog. I found it to be the best! I usually do birdwatching and photography in America so I figured I should not waste this opportunity to see some incredible birds here. Although I must admit I'm a bit overwhelmed as to where to start. Any suggestions about where would be some good places to start during this time of year? Thanks!

    1. AA

      Many of the good birding areas nearby to Dammam are currently closed and not accessable. Dammam corniche is a good area as are the wader roost sites although these are being built on. Find details of how to get there etc under the birding locations tab at the top of my website. Any parks are good early morning before they get busy. The entire Jubail area is good but is 1.5 hours drive away from Dammam.


  2. Thanks for the advice! Will definitely get started. Its too bad some of the places are closed. Last time I was here, I spotted flamingos at the corniche, which was neat. Thanks again.