Saturday 30 October 2010

House buntings in southern Libya

My friends and work colleagues, Sam and Jane are based in Sebha. They occasionally provide me and this blog with information about birds in the south.

Town of Ghat Oases. Photo by Sam Dewhirst

Jane tells me that now the weather is cooler the local larks and wintering wagtails are much more active in Sebha during the day.

Ghat castle. Photo by Sam Dewhirst

Sam and Jane recently visited Ghat which is in the far south west of Libya on the border with Algeria and close to Niger. It is about 2000 kilometres from my house in Benghazi.

House in Ghat with perched house bunting. Photo by Sam Dewhirst

Sam and Jane have bird watched with me on the Jebel Nafusa near Tripoli and know what house bunting looks like. I was very happy when they reported that house bunting is a common bird in Ghat.

blown up of picture above showing a house bunting

Very few bird records are known for Ghat and as far as I can tell no one has reported house bunting never mind that it is common.

I have speculated for some time on this blog that sub-Saharan populations of house bunting should be in southern Libya. See my previous "bird of the month" feature on house bunting. It's known in Chadian Tibesti and there are some old records at Uweinat in the far south east of the country.  But this is proof positive.  My own prediction is that we will soon be seeing records elsewhere in the far south such as in Libyan Tibesti and new records in Uweinat.

Sam knew that some of his pictures of buildings featured house bunting so he sent them in in. I have blown one up and  sure enough it has a house bunting on it - albeit in the distance. This picture is shown above.

house bunting from Jebel Nafusa

Above is a picture I took of a house bunting in the Jebel Nafusa for comparison. I would love to go to Ghat and see the bird myself.

No comments:

Post a Comment