Monday, 8 November 2010

News (and a pharaoh eagle owl) from Sirt

I was contacted by Les Edwards in Sirt last week. He came across a pharaoh eagle owl while working. I found this very exciting. So although I hadn't known Les before this, I immediately asked him if I could do a feature on him and the bird. The good news is that he agreed.

Pharaoh eagle owl, south of Sirt. Photo by Les Edwards

Les says that he isn't really a birder although he was a bird keeper at Chester zoo,UK back in the late 60's and did his bit for the BTO in his spare time notably on the famous UK breeding bird census.  He always have a camera and some bino's with him because of his interest in wildlife. 
He works in the oil industry in seismics, so he has some freedom to wander around the desert in whichever country he works in.  
Les says "when we deploy a seismic camp there are normally very few birds in the area, but after a while we get them coming into camp because of the food scraps and water around".
Les has worked in deserts for 13 years now, but this is the first owl he has seen.  Les says "Nearly ran over it, as it was hidden by some vegetation.  Made my day seeing a wild Eagle Owl".

Les Edwards obviously not in Sirt!

I would like to thank Les for allow me to make this post. I have asked Les to post any other birds he sees on his Libyan travels.  The birds around his seismic camps could be very interesting indeed.

If any other reader has some observations and pictures of wild birds (not caged or falconry!) I would be very keen to post them too.

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