8 Apr 2020

Pale Rock Sparrow – Hanidh

Whilst birding Hanidh in the early spring we came across a leaking tap that had caused a small puddle to form in a desert landscape with a few jebals nearby. In the desert these waterholes are very attractive to birds so although the first couple of times we visited we did not see anything we always held hope birds would come and drink. Very early one morning in mid-March, I saw a large group of 50 plus birds that appeared to be larks flying over and they saw the pool, turned around, and came down nearby. On inspection, it became clear they were Pale Rock Sparrows / Pale Rockfinch and eventually after we retreated to the car, they came to the pool to drink. Pale Rock Sparrow is an uncommon and erratic breeding migrant, that breed particularly after good rainfall like this year, They are an uncommon passage migrant (March to April and September to October), and uncommon winter visitor (November to February). Birds often occur in flocks and wander from place to place so their occurrence is unpredictable and they can appear common if you come across a flock or two. They mainly frequent rocky hills, escarpments and wadis with sandy substrate and low vegetation.  
Pale Rockfinch

Pale Rockfinch

Pale Rockfinch


Pale Rockfinch

Pale Rockfinch

Pale Rockfinch

Pale Rockfinch

Pale Rockfinch

Pale Rockfinch

Pale Rockfinch

Pale Rockfinch

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