Thursday, 4 December 2014

Common cuckoo at the farm

On Monday evening I went to the western perimeter of Sawnout farm. It's out of bounds inside for disease control reasons. 

I had less than an hour and the primary reason was to look over to see if any sociable lapwing have arrived. In this I failed.

Nevertheless I came across a rather confiding common cuckoo.

This first winter bird is late leaving Oman for even more southern climes. However I searched some records and this species has been seen occasionally as late as the first week in December before in the Salalah area.

common cuckoo

It is improbable that any common cuckoo stay the winter.

second view of common cuckoo

It very conveniently spent time either on the perimeter fence or in the grass just over the other side.

cuckoo in the grass

I visit the western perimeter because the sun is behind me and so I can get the best views inside at this time of day. It is also the side with the most cover around the farm and arguably the birding in that area is better than other outside area. It is at its best when a pivot bar spraying water is near-by too.

rose ringed pararkeet

Apart from the cuckoo several rose ringed parakeet and common myna were in the area.

This section of fencing is the best place in Salalah to see house sparrow which is a rare bird in the city.

desert wheatear

Desert wheatear numbers were very high on Monday.

shining sunbird

There is little doubt that shining sunbird are heading towards a breeding season. The males are now in full breeding plumage.

red wattled lapwing

Although I saw no sociable lapwing, a flock of six red-wattled lapwing dropped in on me. They could be some of the same group I saw days before at West Khawr.

I am beginning to see patterns of movements between the lush areas in Salalah. While I was next to the farm, 65 glossy ibis flew in next to 40 or so cattle egret already on the farm. The ibis are usually found at East Khawr which is less than 2 kilometres away.

Eurasian curlew

More surprisingly a flock of about 12 Eurasian curlew flew over the farm.

I had just seen a few in a mixed flock at east Khawr in a quick stop there before going onto the farm.

whimbrel with a curlew at East Khawr

The Eurasian curlew at the farm were certainly flying in the direction of the Khawr.

On Tuesday evening I had a little bit more time and so I called in on Ayn Hamran. That is the subject of the next blog.

No comments:

Post a Comment