Weekly English Update 11/3/2017

Weekly English Update: Another busy weekend in the southern tip of Israel despite some strong southerly winds and even a little more rain with dust storms to follow tomorrow. This isn’t going to deter the birds or the many visiting birders now enjoying some great birding here now. On thursday a group of Belgian birders found Israels fifth Red-necked Grebe at the KM20 salt ponds which could have been very good news for those Israeli birders who missed the last bird which visited here 2 years ago. Unfortunately the bird didn’t stick around, but who knows, maybe he will reappear as the last bird did a number of times. Ringing at the IBRCE was slower during the week but picked up over the weekend with 90 birds ringed this morning. After the dust storm I expect a big wave of migrants will arrive, something worth aiming for. Today we had our first Cretzschmars Bunting ringed, Black-eared Wheatears have arrived and a Pharaoh’s Eagle Owl is active in the park. Anita lake is still crawling with Crakes, I had an incredible 2 Baillons Crakes, 5 Little Crakes and two Rails all together in the reed hide at 6am. A Great Bittern was seen the evening before and Little Bitterns are also moving through. The salt ponds have the first Wood Sandpipers arriving, Pelicans and Storks are moving through and a couple of Pallas’s Gulls were also popular. The South field of Yotvata is bouncing with pipits, the first groups of Greater Short-toed Larks and growing numbers of Yellow Wagtails. A pair of Pallid Harriers is also worth checking out there. Meanwhile the Seyafim Plain is warming up with a Dunn’s Lark and a pair of Hoopoe Larks and Ovda still has good numbers of birds. Raptor migration has been very slow because of the southerly winds but that will change very shorlty. North Beach was pretty quiet but at the south beach the Brown Booby is still showing nicely. Have a great week!