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>> Birding Reports

Southern Arava and allies 26-27/May/2006

Ido Tsurim, Asaf Mayrose, Ohad Hazofe

A Slow but enjoyable birding weekend around the south. Passerine migration was almost over, though some of the rearguard, especially Barn Swallows and Sand Martins, can still be seen around in good numbers. Of note were:

26th, afternoon:
At least one pair of Lesser Kestrels feeding 2 fledglings, and some singletons hunting around the colony near Beer Sheva. A single Hill Sparrow seen feeding on the ground along the road that crosses Halukim Ridge (near Sde Boker). Around the Officers’ sewage, near Mitzpe Ramon: 1 Barbary Falcon, a Stone Curlew, about a hundred Pallid and 20 Alpine Swifts and a few singing Rufous Bush Robins. A nice surprise were the many Desert Finches and Linnets (more than 30 each) singing all around the vineyards, probably breeding there, and a late White Wagtail.

27th, whole day:
North beach, Eilat: a single Sooty Shearwater flying behind the fish farm, a Mangrove Heron on the fish farm, a Sooty Falcon hunting above the bay, 3 ad Parasitic Skuas, about 30 Slender-billed Gulls, and White-winged, Little, Common, Sandwich, Gull-billed and Caspian Terns.

Very small numbers of waders around Km 19-20, mainly Ringed and Kentish Plovers (the latter seen with chicks), Little Stints, and Black-winged Stilts. Also of note were another Sooty Falcon, 2 adult Sanderlings, a Little Ringed Plover, a Red-necked Phalarope, and about a 100 Greater Flamingo along with the long staying Lesser Flamingo.

Along the Arava we had several Steppe Buzzards, a few Spotted Sandgrouses, a male Namaqua Dove and a single Daurian Shrike at Eliphaz’s sewage, 3 Bar-tailed Larks at Km 76-7 and quite a few Rufous Bush Robins and Dead-sea Sparrows.

Of note around Sde-Boker area: 1 Sooty Falcon, 3 Egyptian Vultures and about 40 Black-bellied Sandgrouses.

Lesser Flamingo Namaqua Dove Bar-tailed Lark Bar-tailed Lark

Greater Sand Plover
(Charadrius leschenaultii) Eilat, Mar.05

Black-winged Pratincole
(Glareola nordmanni) Kfar-Ruppin turf fields, Oct.06

Long-billed Pipit
(Anthus similis) Mt. Arbel, Feb.05
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