06 April 2024

Rufous-tailed Scrub Robins – Al Uqair

Whilst birding Al Uqair at the end of March we saw at least four Rufous-tailed Scrub Robin Cercotrichas galactotes in a small date plantation. The species is an uncommon migrant and widespread breeding summer visitor throughout Saudi Arabia with birds arriving in late March and staying until October. They appear to be most common during the first week of May, with more than 10 recorded in one day. Birds of the Riyadh Region by Stagg (1994); mentions the species is a common breeding summer visitor, widespread throughout the region. Numbers 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.