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Monday, October 10, 2011

Pectoral Sandpiper 4th Record in the UAE

News this week was of a Pectoral Sandpiper seen at Mirfa Water Treatment Plant in the Western Region of the UAE. It was reported on Thursday last week but it was Sunday before I could get out there. Mirfa is about a 2.5 hour drive from Dubai towards the Saudi Border. As this was a lifer for me I was not going to miss out and decided to put the effort in. So Sunday I awoke at 04:00am and set off on my 220km drive to Mirfa. The journey was uneventful and eventually arrived at 07:00am.

The very first bird I saw was the Sandpiper feeding on a small patch of grass. Unfortunately I was soon to learn that it was a very shy bird and it flushed before I could get any shots.  As there is only desert around the plant I knew it would be back so I patiently waited.  I was eventually rewarded soon after when the bird happened re-appear to land on some grass where there was cover for me to approach slowly and out of sight.

Some images I managed during those few minutes are below.

Pectoral Sandpiper (Calidris melanotos)

Pectoral Sandpiper (Calidris melanotos)

Pectoral Sandpiper (Calidris melanotos)

Pectoral Sandpiper (Calidris melanotos)

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Safa Park in search of Honey

Safa Park, UAE 06.10.11

Ok so got myself a lifer this morning in the shape of a European Honey Buzzard, my main objective of course was to get good images of the bird. This proved to be impossible as each time I flushed the bird it just flew between dense wooded areas, no chance of an aerial photograph. Will give it another go tomorrow !

However whilst wandering around I did come across a nice Wood Warbler, not too many records for the UAE, or at least a reasonable rarity. Having said that though this is the 2nd bird I have seen in just over a week.

Some images from my early morning walk.

 Immature Striated Heron  (Butorides striata)

 Common Greenshank (Tringa nebularia)

 Wood Warbler (Phylloscopus sibilatrix)

Wood Warbler (Phylloscopus sibilatrix)

Wood Warbler (Phylloscopus sibilatrix)

 Spotted Flycatcher (Muscicapa striata)

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Warsen Lakes , Dubai, UAE

First Blog for sometime. For one reason or another I have not had the time or inclination. However hopefully things are now back to normal and will hopefully post regularly again :-) Sat hidden in the heat this afternoon in the hope of getting a shot of a rather shy Spotted Crake. My patience and "numb" legs (as I was knelt down) finally paid off with a brief appearence of this very shy bird. A bonus whilst waiting was great views of a lovely Common Snipe that was very relaxed whilst feeding.


 Spotted Crake, (Porzana porzana)

 Spotted Crake, (Porzana porzana)

 Citrine Wagtail (Motacilla citreola)

Common Snipe, (Gallinago gallinago)

 Common Snipe, (Gallinago gallinago)