Friday, 24 October 2014

Raysut treated water lake revisited

Yesterday late afternoon, I visited Raysut treated water lake for the second time. The water level was higher but still incredibly clean. The treatment plant must be working to very high standards.

This does of course mean there are very few reeds which need more nutrients and less flies than most plants!

However there were still a good variety of birds and it was a pleasure to bird in such a clean environment.

I have very mixed emotions about my visit. I thought I glimpsed a long-tailed shrike which is a vagrant to these parts but never saw it long enough or got a photo. I searched very hard for it again but failed. I won't claim this sighting but I will go back as soon as I can to look again.

Blue-cheeked bee-eater

As partial compensation, I came across five blue-cheeked bee-eater.  This was the first sighting by me of them in Oman. I have yet to see a European bee-eater here.

Two blue-cheeked bee-eater

In the same tree as a blue-cheeked bee-eater at one stage were a few Tristram's starling. The lake is popular with house crow too.

Tristram's starling

Other land birds included Ruepell's weaver and African silverbill.

The lake

The African silverbill were spending much of their time preening.

African silverbill

Nearer the water's edge, several citrine wagtail were seen. The numbers have increased since last time.

citrine wagtail

Some were moulting. I assume from juvenile monochrome into brighter colours.

white stork in the sky

Large numbers of white stork spend the winter at the near-by Salalah lagoons and Raysut rubbish tip so it wasn't surprising that 45 or so passed over the far end of the lake at one stage. Three steppe eagle were with them.

black winged stilt

Waders included several black-winged stilt, grey heron, squacco heron and a single glossy ibis

green sandpiper

All of trio: wood sandpiper, common sandpiper and green sandpiper were there.

wood sandpiper

The far end looks good terrain for collared pratincole but non seen so far. Lets see what the winter brings.

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