Saturday, September 28, 2013

Israel: Day 19

I had my weekly day off from the raptor count, so joined local birder Tuvia Kahn for a morning visit to Kfar Baruch Reservoir. The first view of the reservoir after topping the high concrete sides was breathtaking, it just looked tailor made for birds. The water levels were low, leaving just a shallow horseshoe of water, fringed neatly with mud, short grass in the middle, and one corner of reedy/sedgey scrub. The whole basin was full with birds; ducks on the water, waders on the mud, and wagtails on the grass,  and a big group of Pelicans on the far side.

The first few scans revealed a single Greater Flamingo, 5 Marbled Ducks and 2 Ferrguinous Ducks, along with Red-throated Pipit, Marsh Sandpiper, Avocets, Spoonbills and Smyrna Kingfisher, with big numbers of Little Stints.

White Pelicans surrounded by ducks and waders
More Pelicans incoming
Closer checking of the mud and grassy areas revealed a 1st winter male Desert Wheatear, a good bird around here apparently. After a bit of leopard crawling I managed some lovely close views, this species always seems to be rather approachable.

Desert Whetear
And while watching that, another good scarcity, a White-tailed Plover suddenly appeared from nowhere on a small isolated pool, possibly having been pushed from cover by a group of goats that were working their way through the rushes.

White- tailed Plover
Overall, an excellent bit of birding, good numbers of birds, plus a few semi-rares, and a nice change from the usual hours of skygazing.
A nice close juvenile Honey Buzzard from a few days ago, to make up
for a lack of raptor action in this post.

No comments: