18/11/2017 at Mutla’a received text stating that Purple Sunbird was seen

Yesterday late afternoon we receivet text stating that there was Purple Sunbird at Mutla’a Ranch. However, we were too far to reach Mutla’a in good light. Therefore we deceided to go next morning. The bird was seen very early in the morning twice. When we arrived some 30 mins later irrigation was turned off and no water was available for the birds. In the afternoon, when irrigation started again, it was too late.

However, we had other good species around including Hypocolius, Hawfinch, Siskin, Wood Lark and Long-eared Owl which I saw only flying.

Hypocolius (Hypocolius ampellinus)

Hawfinch (Coccothraustes coccothraustes)

Siskin (Carduelis spinus)

Woodlark (Lullula arborea)

17/11/2017 Purple Sunbird, the 3rd for Kuwait and WP (if accepted by KORC)

Purple Sunbird Cinnyris asiaticus

Purple Sunbird Cinnyris asiaticus

Today was an exceptional day, we really had good birds. In the morning at Jahra Pools Reserve we had Moustached Warbler showed well many times allowing excellent photographing opportunities. We also had Mountain Chiffchaff and Indian Reed Warbler which also showed very well. Many participants of the Winter Tour 11-19 Nov. 2017 were very pleased with the finding of the Mountain Chiffchaff.

We then went to Liah Reserve but soon decided to leave to Mutla’a Ranch. At Mutla’a had a male Shikra, a couple of Namaqua Doves, a Woodlark which is a rare bird in Kuwait, Penduline Tits, an Olive-backed Pipit, a 12th for Kuwait (if accepted by KORC) and a two Long-eared Owls a 7th for Kuwait if accepted by KORC (found by Martin Kviesgaard).

A big surprise started when I opened the car door, put my binoculars on driving seats, and washed hand and face preparing (Wadoo’a) to do my prayer, I noticed through the door window a small bird on a Mesquite branch just 5m in front of me, I thought it was a chiffchaff, but looked smaller, could it be a Plain Leaf Warbler? I asked myself, so I grabbed my Binoculars and looked through. There it is in front my eyes a male Purple Sunbird standing in a profile showing clearly . . I shouted Purple Sunbird!! Six of the birders around managed to see it at a close range, it then went to drink from the dripping pipe by hovering under the big dripping pipe. It was a fantastic view that we all enjoyed. I soon remembered, three of the group were birding somewhere else, we called them, but the bird was not there. After half an hour all managed to see it again and were able to take good photographs. What a day!

It worth mentioning that Sven Olof Sjostedt, a participant in the Winter Tour, saw the Purple Sunbird before me but couldn’t identify as I learnt later from him. 

Purple Sunbird Cinnyris asiaticus

Purple Sunbird Cinnyris asiaticus

Jahra Pool;s Reserve:

Northern Shoveler Spatula clypeata 1, Mallard Anas platyrhynchos 4, Common Pochard Aythya ferina 4, Ferruginous Duck Aythya nyroca 2, Tufted Duck Aythya fuligula 3, Little Grebe Tachybaptus ruficollis 2, Great Crested Grebe Podiceps cristatus 1, Great Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo 6, Little Bittern Ixobrychus minutus 2, Grey Heron Ardea cinerea 2, Purple Heron Ardea purpurea 3, Great White Egret Ardea alba 28, Little Egret Egretta garzetta 15, Squacco Heron Ardeola ralloides 3, Eurasian Spoonbill Platalea leucorodia 1, Greater Spotted Eagle Clanga clanga 4, Western Marsh Harrier Circus aeruginosus 2, Black-eared Kite Milvus migrans lineatus 1, Water Rail Rallus aquaticus 2, Grey-headed Swamphen Porphyrio poliocephalus 7, Common Moorhen Gallinula chloropus 6, Eurasian Coot Fulica atra 30, Grey Plover Pluvialis squatarola 54, Lesser Sand Plover Charadrius mongolus 2, Greater Sand Plover Charadrius leschenaultii 5, Kentish Plover Charadrius alexandrinus 5, Bar-tailed Godwit Limosa lapponica 4, Curlew Sandpiper Calidris ferruginea 25, Dunlin Calidris alpina 4, Common Snipe Gallinago gallinago 4, Caspian Tern Hydroprogne caspia 5, Whiskered Tern Chlidonias hybrida 1, Common Kingfisher Alcedo atthis 1, White-throated Kingfisher Halcyon smyrnensis 4, Pied Kingfisher Ceryle rudis 1, Isabelline Shrike Lanius isabellinus 1, Sand Martin Riparia riparia 4, Eurasian Penduline Tit Remiz pendulinus 2, Common Chiffchaff Phylloscopus collybita 8, Mountain Chiffchaff Phylloscopus sindianus 3, Moustached Warbler Acrocephalus melanopogon 4, Great Reed Warbler Acrocephalus arundinaceus 2, Indian Reed Warbler Acrocephalus (stentoreus) brunnescens 3, Graceful Prinia Prinia gracilis 2, Bluethroat Luscinia svecica 1, European Stonechat Saxicola rubicola 1, Caspian Stonechat Saxicola hemprichii 1, European Starling Sturnus vulgaris 400.

Purple Sunbird Cinnyris asiaticus

Mutla’a Ranch:

Asian Shikra Accipiter (badius) cenchroides 1, Eurasian Sparrowhawk Accipiter nisus 1, Long-legged Buzzard Buteo rufinus 2, Namaqua Dove Oena capensis 2, Long-eared Owl Asio otus 2, Woodlark Lullula arborea 3, Eurasian Penduline Tit Remiz pendulinus 4, European Robin Erithacus rubecula 1, Red-breasted Flycatcher Ficedula parva 4, Western Black Redstart Phoenicurus ochruros 1, Central Asian Black Redstart Phoenicurus (ochruros) phoenicuroides 2, Purple Sunbird Cinnyris asiaticus 1, Olive-backed Pipit Anthus hodgsoni 1, Common Chaffinch Fringilla coelebs 1, Eurasian Siskin Spinus spinus 3.

15/11/2017 in Al Abraq

I have British group of four people headed by Chris Bell visiting Kuwait. Only “easy” species was Rueppel’s Weaver which we saw on Green Island yesterday. Now we are trying to find real rarities and vagrants such as Eversmann’s Redstart or Hume’s Wheatear. However, we note all birds around anyway. Today we had Yellow-browed Warbler, 5 Bramblings, Chaffinch, Mistle Thrush, two Red-breasted Flycatchers and few Common Redstarts in Al Abraq. When we add to this our two Siskins, two Woodlarks, Quail, 5 Corn Buntings and several Hypocolius in Mutla’a Ranch the day was locally excellent. Later on we got to know that AbdulRahman’s team found Indian Roller at Pivot Fields and Rashed Al Hajji photographed Hawfinch (2nd for Kuwait) near JPR. Nothing mega was seen but variety of locally good species was overwhelming.

Brambling (Fringilla montifringilla)

Mistle Thrush (Turdus viscivorus)

15/11/2017 Winter Tour Update

We had 4 day birding and the highlights are as follows:

Indian Reef Heron Egretta gularis schistacea

Greater Spotted Eagle Clanga clanga

Eastern Imperial Eagle Aquila heliacal

Pallid Harrier Circus macrourus 

Grey-headed Swamphen Porphyrio (porphyrio) poliocephalus 

Red-wattled Lapwing Vanellus indicus 

White-tailed Lapwing Vanellus leucurus 

Lesser Sand Plover Anarhynchus atrifrons 

Greater Sand Plover Anarhynchus leschenaultii 

Broad-billed Sandpiper Limicola falcinellus 

Terek Sandpiper Xenus cinereus 

Crab-plover Dromas ardeola 

Great Black-headed Gull Ichthyaetus ichthyaetus 

Armenian Gull Larus armenicus 

Caspian Tern Hydroprogne caspia 

Greater Crested Tern Thalasseus bergii 

Lesser Crested Tern Thalasseus bengalensis

White-winged Tern Chlidonias leucopterus 

White-throated Kingfisher Halcyon smyrnensis 

Pied Kingfisher Ceryle rudis 

Blue-cheeked Bee-eater Merops persicus 

Indian Roller Coracias benghalensis 

Daurian Shrike Lanius isabellinus 

Turkestan Shrike Lanius phoenicuroides 

Mauryan Grey Shrike Lanius lahotra pallidirostris 

Black-crowned Sparrow-Lark Eremopterix nigriceps 

White-eared Bulbul Pycnonotus leucotis 

Red-vented Bulbul Pycnonotus cafer

Yellow-browed Warbler Phylloscopus inornatus 

Hume’s Leaf Warbler Phylloscopus humei 

Moustached Warbler Acrocephalus melanopogon 

Eastern Olivaceous Warbler Iduna pallida 

Afghan Babbler Turdoides (caudata) huttoni 

Caspian Stonechat Saxicola maurus hemprichii 

Eastern Mourning Wheatear Oenanthe lugens persicus

Finsch’s Wheatear Oenanthe finschii 

Red-tailed Wheatear Oenanthe chrysopygia 

Common Myna Acridotheres tristis

Olive-backed Pipit Anthus hodgsoni 

Hypocolius Hypocolius ampelinus 

Desert Finch Rhodospiza obsoleta 

Rüppell’s Weaver Ploceus galbula

06/11/2017 at Kabd Reserve

At midday I went to Kabd Reserve to see who won the territory, the Desert Wheatear or Red-tailed Wheatear. They were competing on the territory and perch, I wished the Red-tailed Wheatear would win as it the scarer one. But today unfortunately the Red-tailed Wheatear has given up the territory! What a shame.

Namaqua Dove Oena capensis

Namaqua Dove Oena capensis

Namaqua Dove Oena capensis

Namaqua Dove Oena capensis the same birds as above but showing more of itself.

Birds seen at Kabd Reserve were:

Collared Dove Streptopelia decaocto 5, Namaqua Dove Oena capensis 1, Common Kestrel Falco tinnunculus 1, Daurian Shrike Lanius isabellinus 2, Mauryan Shrike Lanius meridionalis pallidirostris 1, Black-crowned Sparrow-Lark Eremopterix nigriceps 16, Crested Lark Galerida cristata 5, Asian Desert Warbler Sylvia nana 1, European Stonechat Saxicola rubicola 1, Desert Wheatear Oenanthe deserti 4, Isabelline Wheatear Oenanthe isabellina 3.

Black-crowned Sparrow-Lark Eremopterix nigriceps

Black-crowned Sparrow-Lark Eremopterix nigriceps

05/11/2017 at Al-Shallal’s Farm, Jahra Farms and Jahra Pools Reserve

As usual today Al-Shallal’s Farms was quiet, but wintering birds are arriving which included Water Pipits, Red-breasted Flycatcher. Jahra Farms had Daurian Shrikes, White Wagtails, Meadow and Water Pipits. Nothing new at Jahra Pools Reserve, but the Bonelli’s Eagle is still there.

Bank Myna Acridotheres ginginianus

Bank Myna Acridotheres ginginianus

Greater Spotted Eagle Clanga clanga

Greater Spotted Eagle Clanga clanga

Al-Shallal’s Farm:

Eurasian Sparrowhawk Accipiter nisus 1, Rock Dove Columba livia 15, Namaqua Dove Oena capensis 1, Common Chiffchaff Phylloscopus collybita 15, Red-breasted Flycatcher Ficedula parva 1, Black-eared Wheatear Oenanthe hispanica 1, White Wagtail Motacilla alba 12, Water Pipit Anthus spinoletta 10, Spanish Sparrow Passer hispaniolensis 5.

Namaqua Dove Oena capensis

Namaqua Dove Oena capensis juvenile, doves in Kuwait breed until November.

Jahra Farms:

Black-headed Gull Chroicocephalus ridibundus 8, Collared Dove Streptopelia decaocto 2, Laughing Dove Streptopelia senegalensis 2, White-throated Kingfisher Halcyon smyrnensis 1, Blue-cheeked Bee-eater Merops persicus 15, Eurasian Hobby Falco subbuteo 1, Ring-necked Parakeet Psittacula krameri 5, Daurian Shrike Lanius isabellinus 1, Barn Swallow Hirundo rustica 5, White-eared Bulbul Pycnonotus leucotis 3, Common Myna Acridotheres tristis 17, Bank Myna Acridotheres ginginianus 15, White Wagtail Motacilla alba 3, Meadow Pipit Anthus pratensis 1, House Sparrow Passer domesticus 6.

White Wagtail Motacilla alba

White Wagtail Motacilla alba

Jahra Pools Reserve:

Northern Shoveler Spatula clypeata 4, Common Pochard Aythya ferina 4, Ferruginous Duck Aythya nyroca 3, Little Grebe Tachybaptus ruficollis 4, Great Crested Grebe Podiceps cristatus 1, Grey Heron Ardea cinerea 1, Squacco Heron Ardeola ralloides 2, Greater Spotted Eagle Clanga clanga 5, Bonelli’s Eagle Aquila fasciata 1, Western Marsh Harrier Circus aeruginosus 2, Grey-headed Swamphen Porphyrio poliocephalus 5, Common Moorhen Gallinula chloropus 6, Eurasian Coot Fulica atra 48, Northern Lapwing Vanellus vanellus 8, Ruff Calidris pugnax 2, Common Snipe Gallinago gallinago 3, Common Redshank Tringa totanus 2, Black-headed Gull Chroicocephalus ridibundus 6, Collared Dove Streptopelia decaocto 75, Common Kingfisher Alcedo atthis 1, White-throated Kingfisher Halcyon smyrnensis 1, Red-tailed Shrike Lanius phoenicuroides 1, Daurian Lanius isabellinus 1, Sand Martin Riparia riparia 1.

Bonelli's Eagle Aquila fasciata

Bonelli’s Eagle Aquila fasciata

Common Chiffchaff Phylloscopus collybita

Common Chiffchaff Phylloscopus collybita

Common Chiffchaff Phylloscopus collybita

Common Chiffchaff Phylloscopus collybita

03/11/2017 at various sites

Main target today was to show to my friend Bassel Afghan Babblers. However, on the way to Abdaly farms we stopped first at Mutla’a Ranch where we had female Hypocolious, male Shikira and c. 5 Red-breasted Flycatchers. Nex stop was Rawdatain botling plant that produced 2 more Red-breasted Flycatchers and Accipiter sp. In Abdaly farms we saw first few Hypocolius before finding Afghan Babblers. We had at least 8 birds around and more Hypocolius. On the way back to Kuwait city we stopped at Sabriya farm. Over there we were able to hear call of Hume’s Leaf Warbler. This at least my best understanding. All in all quite nice birding day.

Afghan Babbler (Turdoides (caudatus) huttoni)

 

02/11/2017 at Kabd Reserve and Jal Al Zor

A short visit to Kabd Reserve produced two Black-crowned Sparrow-Larks, while that to Jal Al Zor produced a single Eastern Mourning Wheatear which were the highlights of today.

Eastern Mourning Wheatear Oenanthe lugens

Eastern Mourning Wheatear Oenanthe lugens

Jal Al-Zor:

Laughing Dove Streptopelia senegalensis 13, Peregrine Falcon Falco peregrinus 1, Eastern Mourning Wheatear Oenanthe lugens 1, House Sparrow Passer domesticus 8.

Red-tailed Wheatear Oenanthe chrysopygia

Red-tailed Wheatear Oenanthe chrysopygia

Kabd Reserve:

Short-toed Eagle Circaetus gallicus 1, Blue-cheeked Bee-eater Merops persicus 4, Mauryan Grey Shrike Lanius lahotra pallidirostris 1,

Greater Hoopoe-Lark Alaemon alaudipes

Greater Hoopoe-Lark Alaemon alaudipes

Black-crowned Sparrow-Lark Eremopterix nigriceps

Black-crowned Sparrow-Lark Eremopterix nigriceps

2, Black-crowned Sparrow-Lark Eremopterix nigriceps 2, Crested Lark Galerida cristata 3, Northern Wheatear Oenanthe oenanthe 1, Pied Wheatear Oenanthe pleschanka 2, Red-tailed Wheatear Oenanthe chrysopygia 1, Desert Wheatear Oenanthe deserti 7, Isabelline Wheatear Oenanthe isabellina 14, Tawny Pipit Anthus campestris 6, House Sparrow Passer domesticus 5.

Peregrine Falcon Falco peregrinus

Peregrine Falcon Falco peregrinus