Yet again the Israeli birding community has been dragged down to the deep south for another mega rarity and like his predecessors the latest star didn’t disappoint. The Red-rumped Wheatear remained all week in the same area and remained very easy going despite the number of photographers looking for photos. She bounced over to visit me while I was being mobbed by Temminck’s Larks, happily snaffling down beatles. On thursday I went looking for Basalt Wheatears in the area and while I didn’t find one today one turned up very close the Red-rumped Wheatear. My guess is we will see more of them shortly and possibly even rarer birds. The area is great with growing numbers of Temminck’s Larks, Thick-billed Larks, Hoopoe Larks Bar-tailed Larks, a couple of Richard’s Pipits, Bimaculated Larks, Cream-colored Coursers, Wheatears and Stonechats. There are still corners of Ovda that need checking out, who knows what’s hiding there?? More raptors have been on the move this week with Steppe Eagles being the most common, a few Lesser Spotted Eagles, many Booted Eagles, a Bonelli’s Eagle and Greater Spotted Eagle at Km 19 and the Imperial Samar Eagle has returned for his ninth winter here! Ringing was a bit slow most of the week but has picked up today with big numbers of Chiffchaffs and Bluethroats moving in. There have been a couple of Red-Breasted Flycatchers, a Richards Pipit, Baillon’s Crake, the first Dead Sea Sparrows, Robins, Song Thrush, Stonechats etc. Yotvata has been surprisingly quiet and apart from a Merlin and Finsch’s Wheatear not much to report. Come visit, it will be worth it!