Friday, 5 December 2014

Two wintering birds at Ayn Hamran

On Tuesday afternoon, I visited Ayn Hamran for the first time in about a week. It always gives me a chance of new birds and Tuesday was no exception.

song thrush

I actually added two more to my country list. The first was a song thrush which was found in the middle section of the area. It was in a tree in one of the most shaded parts next to the stream.

second view of song thrush

It wouldn't give me good views but at least it was settled. The picture below is the best I managed on first pass.  However I returned to the spot about 20 minutes later having searched the top end of the Ayn. This time it was in a more exposed position and allowed prolonged and excellent views. The two pictures above are from then.

earlier look at song thrush

While I was looking at the song thrush on the way back, I realised there was a red-breasted flycatcher in the same area.

record shot

Unfortunately I lost track of it all too quickly and managed only one poor record shot due to it being into the sun.

Even in this you can see it characteristically dropping its wings.

Both species winter in Oman though in both cases they aren't common in Dhofar.

African paradise flycatcher

The common flycatcher here is, of course, the African paradise flycatcher. This one was a female but a handsome male was near by with an even longer tail than on my last visit.

Abyssinian white-eye

I wonder just how large the population of Abyssinian white-eye is in the Dhofar hills? It is the probably the common bird of all. Surely there must be many tens of thousands.

citrine wagtail

Citrine wagtail is the most common wagtail directly at water and Ayn Hamran has had about ten scattered along the course of the stream all winter.

Blue-cheeked bee-eater

An common sight now was a single blue-cheeked bee-eater. It is a late migrant. it has been the last one  I have seen and I probably won't see any more until spring.

I went west on Wednesday afternoon and was with two visiting birders from the UAE part of the time. I will blog about this next.


  1. Andy,

    They are Simon Lloyd and Oscar Campbell. We did one session together on Wednesday. Rob