Gavin Farnell found two Nightjars in Mid-February of this year. They hung around for a couple of days before moving on. See post of 18/02/2016. Now he has found three birds resting up in the same area. He kindly guided me onto them again and I was able to take some images
The first bird was perched high up in a palm
The second bird was lower to the ground perched on a thick branch
Here it is seen from the other side of the tree giving us a better view
The third bird was perched on a branch just under the canopy of a large tree situated nearby
There was another wave of Blue-cheeked Bee-eaters passing through. As usual they were using the overhead cables to roost on and hawk insects from. This bird took some time out for a spot of preening whilst all this activity was going on around it
A good scratch
Breast feather maintenance
Simultaneous wing and tail stretch
Good to go
Early the other morning I came across this Falcon resting up on the ground. One can clearly see the jesses attached to the legs and there also signs of a leg ring visible. It was quite approachable and I managed to take these images without it showing any signs of wanting to fly off. I wonder who it belongs to?
There was some good birding to be had this morning. Several migrants were to be seen including White Wagtail, Black-necked Grebe, Barn Swallow, Ruff, Common Sandpiper, Common Redshank, White-winged Terns, and Desert Wheatear. Highlights of the morning though, were two new ticks for the patch, an Asian Desert Warbler and a Northern Shoveler.
Asian Desert Warbler
Northern Shoveler on the pond
I think this is an male eclipse bird (late summer) given the eye colour and wing markings
Note the yellow eye
I photographed this adult male bird in January 2014 on Irkaya farm. I include it here for comparative purposes
The UCI Road World Championships are being held here in Qatar. The Women's Team Time Trial event was won by the Boels-Dolmans Team in a time of 48.41.62. Here the team is seen at the starting line. Team members included Evelyn Stevens, Lizzie Deignan, Chantal Blaak, Ellen van Dijk, Christine Majerus and Karol-Ann Canuel.
My first Masked Shrike of the season. I ended up recording two on the day.
There were several White-winged Terns circling over the ponds. Here one takes a short rest on the grass
One of two Garganey ducks seen on the ponds
An Adult Black-crowned Night-heron
A juvenile Black-crowned Night-heron . Both were seen at the same pond
Eugene Roberts who I have taken out birding before, recently called me asking if I could take some more of her friends on another trip. So bright and early I picked up Eugene, Heather Oliver, and Karen Subba Row and off we set for the farm. The new ladies were interested to see the extent of the irrigation fields and the number of birds that were to be found. They were also amazed that birds like the Barn Swallow and the Grey Heron which they see in England are also to be seen passing through here. We compiled a list for the day and managed to tick off a respectable 39 species in a couple of hours(see below). Highlights of the morning included a single Flamingo, several Pied Avocets, an abundance of Marsh Harriers patrolling over the fields, three Collared Pratincoles and the brightly coloured Blue-cheeked Bee-eaters to name a few. Hopefully over time their lists will grow and get closer to the 300 odd species that have been recorded in Qatar.
Black-crowned Night Heron juvenile
Full list for the day: Barn Swallow, Black-crowned Night-heron, Black-necked Grebe, Black-winged Stilt, Blue-cheeked Bee-eater, Clamorous Reed Warbler (Indian), Collared Pratincole, Common Kestrel, Common Moorhen, Common Ringed Plover, Crested Lark, Daurian Shrike, Eurasian Collared Dove, Eurasian Hoopoe, Eurasian Teal, Eurasian Wigeon, Garganey, Great Crested Grebe, Greater Flamingo, Grey Heron, House Sparrow, Indian Silverbill, Isabelline Wheatear, Kentish Plover, Lesser Short-toed Lark, Little Egret, Little Grebe, Little Stint, Namaqua Dove, Pallid Harrier, Pied Avocet, Southern Grey shrike ( Arabian Grey Shrike), Spanish Sparrow, Squacco Heron, Western Marsh Harrier, Western Yellow Wagtail, White-winged Tern and Wood Sandpiper
Having last seen this bird in the first week of August I was keen to see if it was still here when we got back to Doha after a bit of a holiday. My initial visits to the local patch did not produce any such sightings so I just presumed it had moved on in the interim. Much to my surprise and delight the other morning there it was back on the patch going about its business. I noticed the nape feathers are no longer visible as it transitions out of its summer plumage
Portrait of an Indian Pond Heron
A good old head scratch
Poised, waiting patiently to spear a fish
Here are some additional images of birds that I have connected with whilst I have been out in the field this week
Greater Short-toed Lark.
Little Grebe. A bird now being seen in large numbers at the new ponds below the farm
A Pallid Harrier keeps a close eye on me
A Blue-cheeked Bee-eater
A European Roller perched on the overhead power lines in early morning light
A Red-vented Bulbul