Sunday 21 January 2018

Desert birds

Spent the weekend in Eilat. Met up with Shachar at the bird park which was quiet except for some Penduline Tits. We then headed for the date palms to see if we could connect with the Olive-backed Pipit. We did, but only by call. Most frustrating. We then decided to swap rarity for beauty, gave up on the pipit and headed for Amram's Pillars. Desert birds, especially if common, can be overlooked and underappreciated but check out the colours on these birds. Sinai Rosefinch . . .

 Ok, the females are a bit drabber but still cute.

Sand Partridge - incredible plumage!

 Plenty of Trumpeter Finches around too.
 And now for wheatears. White-crowned Black.
 Hooded - great tail pattern.
 We were watching this bird - it flew down out of sight and a second later
this Mourning Wheatear flew up and took the Hooded's place.
Same thing happened later - this Hooded replaced by a White-crowned Black. No idea where the Hooded went or where the WCB came from.

Much more unusual - Basalt Wheatear.

 And Blackstart - common but full of character.

Asian Desert Warbler - another real gem of a Sylvia - love that combination of yellow eye and cinnamon tail.

NW India - 9th to 22nd February 2020 (Kosi River, Corbett NP, Haripur Dam, Pangot, Sattal, Chopta, Walterre)

If you look through the Birds of the Indian Subcontinent (Grimmett, Inskipp and Inskipp, 2011) you cannot help noticing the huge range of s...