Wednesday, 2 February 2011

Ain Kaam - a "river"

Ain Kaam is the name of the lowest part of Wadi Kaam where it reaches the sea. It is the longest permanent "river" in Tripolitania albeit less than  2 kilometres long.

The reeds are known to have resident reed warbler (and because they are resident they are probably African reed warbler) and zitting cisticola though they were not visited by me on Saturday because of a lack of time.

I only had time to see the river itself and a short stretch of one bank towards the estuary.

It was a fruitful time though.

cormorant drying its wings at Ain Kaam

On the bank I saw my first bluethroat in Tripolitania. Both the north west and north east coast have significant numbers of this bird wintering. There were also hoopoe, white wagtail and stonechat readily seen.

Each time I have visited Ain Kaam in winter I have seen cormorant - including one (not the same one) every time on the same rock!

great crested grebe

There were a couple of great crested grebe present this time. This grebe is the second most common wintering grebe on the northern Libyan coast after black necked grebe. Unlike the latter it's Libyan haunts are not on the distribution map of the best selling bird guide for Britain and Europe (which covers this area). 

common sandpiper

Four common sandpiper were on a second near-by rock. This was a good omen for the estuary but we didn't have time to visit it because I had to race back to the airport for my flight back to Benghazi. 

cormorant with escaped domestic duck

Finally I can report there were two (escaped) domestic ducks on the water. They are two of the luckiest domestic ducks in Libya. First it would appear they had escaped and second they managed to find a river!

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