Tuesday 17 March 2015

HaBesor Reservior update

A hour's walk around HaBesor Reservoir was well worth it. Lots of common migrants around, most notable of which was a big passage of Cretzschmar's Buntings - the first of the year for me. It was all about fences today - the one around the upper reservoir was jumping with buntings.

Also on the fence - a Wryneck,

and continuing the fence theme, a white spotted Bluethroat
 with a red spotted cousin on the fence across from it.

The fence motif continued with a pair of Little-green Bee-eaters, one of which posed well for me. LGBs appeared here last year too - perhaps this is a newly established northern extension to their range?

Other migrants were Lesser Whitethroats and Chiffchaff by the bucket, a few acros in the reeds and a Reed Warbler in the flowers close to the fence. The Pied Kingfisher is still around but otherwise the reservoir itself was quiet.

I sometimes forget just how handsome some of the commoner birds here are - a very well turned out male Spanish Sparrow

and a Chukar near the kibbutz. Apparently Chukars used to be common around here and then disappeared for a long time. Good to see they're making a comeback.

Finally, an Arabian Babbler at Nachal Besor on Route 222 - not a rare bird at all except for location. This is the furthest NW I've seen them.

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