12 November 2022

Red-breasted Flycatcher - Hanidh

Whilst birding the area between Judah and Al Wannan area on 4 November Phil Roberts and I came across a Red-breasted Flycatcher along the edge of fenced off area of farmland including a large pivot irrigation field. The area was fenced with a set off trees growing along a couple of sides and the Red-breasted Flycatcher was mainly spending its time along the barbed wire fence line. The bird was very active and it was not easy trying to get close to it for photographs with the below photos the best I managed. This was only the third one I had seen so was a very nice surprise, with the last one also in November in Jubail on 19 November 2021. Red-breasted Flycatcher is a rare passage migrant and winter visitor to Saudi Arabia with records scattered around the Kingdom with a number from the northwest, particularly Yanbu mainly in November. A number of records have occurred in the Riyadh area from October to January, but mainly in November. Birds from the Eastern Province have occurred from September to March with most in October and November and the best areas Dhahran and Abqaiq. This record from Hanidh fits nicely the pattern of occurrence of late autumn early winter.