06 February 2023

Crested Honey Buzzards wintering – Deffi Park

Whilst birding Deffi Park we came across at least three and possibly four Crested Honey Buzzard perched in the trees of the park. There was what looked like an adult male, a possible young male and a juvenile bird. The juvenile was a different bird to the juvenile I saw in the same park in October. Birds have been using this park for at least five consecutive winters with records noted until April but 2022 saw records throughout the summer months. Crested Honey Buzzard in Saudi Arabia is a scarce passage migrant and winter visitor that also occurs rarely in summer. Most records are from the Eastern province in winter and spring with additional records in the west of the country in autumn, winter and spring. Birds are also still wintering in Dhahran with two birds seen most days in recent weeks around the golf course area. Other birds in the park included the White-throated Kingfisher which is wintering there and two Lesser Whitethroat with four or five Common Chiffchaff, a single Song Thrush and two Eurasian Sparrowhawks.