22/11/2007, at JEO, the first confirmed record of European Golden Plover for Kuwait, was found and photographed by Rashed Al-Hajji
22/11/2007 at JEO
In his excellent book “The Birds of the State of Kuwait”, George Gregory wrote: Under the heading “European Golden Plover (Pluvialis apricaria)” the following:
All or almost all of the Kuwait records of this species probably refer to Pacific Golden Plover (P. fulva), which is now regularly recorded in all Gulf States. (The former Lesser Golden Plover (P. dominica) was recently split in two specie, and Pacific Golden Plover is the one which occurs in Kuwait. European Golden Plover was commonly called just ‘Golden Plover’ in the past).
Kuwait records of European Golden Plover include ten records in 1971, four in 1972, one in 1973 and one in 1974. On 15 December 1977 L. Corral recorded one ‘Golden or Lesser Golden Plover’ at Prison Pool. C. W. T. Pilcher wrote of European Golden Plover in Kuwait: ‘Vagrant’. I have seen Golden Plovers on two occasions only and on the first there was no doubt about their being Golden Plovers. More recently a single bird recorded as Golden Plover but could have been Lesser’ (Warr, undated). None of these records is supported by an adequate description, if indeed any was written, and it is best to regard all of them as requiring confirmation.
This morning (23/11/2007) Rashed has sent me his photographs for 22nd November. On looking at his photographs I realized that it wasn’t a Pacific Golden Plover that I thought when I briefly looked at his camera’s LCD yesterday morning. This bird is a European Golden Plover, Pluvialis apricaria the first confirmed record for Kuwait if accepted by KORC.
Bird description: Upperparts: Golden spangled on mantle, back, tail and tail coverts and wing coverts, there is a distinct white wing-bar, wing tips projecting beyond tail. Underparts: Buff breast with indistinct brown streaking spreading into flanks and are converted to barring reaching the sides of vent, whitish belly and vent. Bare parts: Bill appears slimmer, shorter and pointed downwards when compared to Pacific Golden Plover. Tibiae are short making the legs looks short. In flight: Shows the distinctive white wing-bar on upper wing typical of a Eurasian Golden Plover, white under-wing coverts and a dusky bar fringed with white formed by the under-wing greater coverts. Legs did not project beyond tail as normally seen on Pacific Golden Plover in fight.
Congratulations Rashed and well done! I must thank Rashed for submitting his photographs, without which the confirmation of occurrence of this bird in Kuwait would have been much delayed, who knows, a number of years!
The following photographs by Rashed all photographed on 22/11/2007 starting from left to right clockwise, the first two are of the first confirmed record for Kuwait, the European Golden Plover, a family of Greenshanks in winter plumage, and a juvenile Steppe Eagle.