01 April 2021

Short-eared Owl - Turaif

Whilst birding the far northwest of Saudi Arabia, near Turaif, in January 2021 I found a Short-eared Owl in the basalt lava area near the Jordan boarder This is a scarce to uncommon winter visitor to all areas north of Jeddah, Riyadh and Hofuf. Two birds have been seen on occasion including two on Bisaita plain in the north of the Kingdom on 13 February 2009. In the Riyadh area it is a rare or scarce winter visitor. The Eastern Province has had records of multiple birds with a minimum of eight near Wari’ah, Diddibah 12-13 February 1987 and six Al Asfar Lake Jnauary to February 2018. This is only the second time I have seen the species in Saudi Arabia after seeing four at Al Asfar lake in February 2018.