05 April 2021

Rufous-tailed Scrub Robin – Jubail

Whilst birding Jubail we saw a very confiding Rufous-tailed Scrub Robin Cercotrichas galactotes a species that normally spends its time well hidden in vegetation. The Rufous-tailed Scrub Robin is an uncommon breeding migrant and uncommon passage migrant with birds arriving in late March and staying until late September or early October with most sightings during the first week of May. Birds of the Riyadh Region by Stagg (1994); mentions the species is a common breeding summer visitor, widespread throughout the region. Numbers in the Kingdom have increased significantly in recent years in the wake of expanding cultivation. The species has been seen in the huge desert of the Empty Quarter with one at Sabkha 40 on two days in suitable breeding habitat although this individual was more likely to have been a migrant as no song was heard.