27 May 2021

Streaked Weavers nesting – Al Hair

A trip to the Al Hair river outside of Riyadh in late May resulted in us finding a nice colony of breeding Streaked Weavers. Freshly made nests were located with adult birds busy adding to them, with at least twenty nests found in a short visible area in the reed beds with up to 200 birds located. Streaked Weaver owe their origin to released or escaped captive birds with young heard in nests in July near Riyadh previously. This is one of the few areas where the species can be seen in Saudi Arabia and is the first time I have seen and photographed them in breeding plumage. It is very hot at this time of year, in this area, so arriving at sunrise is advisable to get the best light for photography as well as cooler temperatures is advisable. Breeding birds have been seen in the Eastern Province at the sewage lagoon of the King Fahd International Airport, 29 April 1989. Birds build nests here until they were destroyed by reed cutting machines and as far as I am aware have not nested again in the Eastern Province.