For the Global Big Day I checked my two patches - Nir Oz and
Besor Reservoir. Started off in the wee hours with Scops Owl, Barn Owl and Stone Curlew calling
followed by the dawn chorus of Blackbirds, Olivaceous Warblers, Sunbirds and
various members of the pigeon family. At first light Syrian Woodpeckers started
drumming and a young Great Spotted Cuckoo began pestering its Hooded Crow
'parents' for food. I met up with Aviv and Neta and we drove to Besor
Reservoir picking up Black-winged Kite
on the way.
The Besor Reservoir was fairly productive but with some notable
exceptions from yesterday (no swifts, Rufous Bush Robin, Feruginous Duck,
Garganey, Black-winged Stilt, Redstart or Lesser Whitethroat!!!) but also a notable patch tick
(Little Bittern). Cetti's, Clamarous Reed, Reed and Sedge Warblers were in
abundance, as were Little and Cattle Egrets along with Squacco and Night Herons.
Purple Heron numbers dropped to two.
The Little Owl was on its favourite bank
the Rollers were doing their usual best to keep out of (decent) view - always
flying or against the light.
A single Spotted Flycatcher,
a couple of Masked Shrikes, Blackcaps and Willow Warblers increased the passerine list. Swallows and Sand Martins were the only hirundines. Bird of the day came in the form of aLittle Bittern
that flew a short distance over the reeds before
dropping out of sight. Very pleased to have seen that here. A couple of Honey
Buzzards, a Long-legged Buzzard, Buzzards,
Marsh Harrier, Sparrowhawk and Kestrel completed a rather
disappointing raptor list. A Purple Swamp-hen made a typically brief appearance
before disappearing back into the reeds. As we headed back to the car a flock of
a couple of hundred Pelicans took off from the not-worth-checking upper reservoir.
final stop at Reim Reservior yielded Little Stint and Common Sandpiper and the
Pelican flock from Besor bringing the total to 60 species seen by ~09.30. As mentioned above, there are some glaring and strange omissions in the species list (how is possible not to see Lesser Whitethroat?) but Little Bittern and Black-winged Kite made up for it.