Wednesday 22 August 2012

Wet season reports from Terry Barry

I recently returned from two months visiting my family in the UK, which is why there have been no blog reports for a while. I was very interested to know what goes on throughout the rainy season, because last year I returned from my vacation in August to find a very different mix of birds to those I had left in June. I was therefore very happy to receive regular reports from Terry Barry about his sightings. I would liked to have posted them immediately, but I only had internet access through my iPad and it would have proven difficult. Many thanks to Terry for these:

June 9th. I went over to Tuti by myself this morning 9/6/2012.  Just kept along the other side of bridge opposite Nile Street. Black-headed Herons and Abdim's storks were back and forth collecting nesting material on Tuti  for their nests on Nile Street - no Grey Herons around. Sacred Ibisis flying overhead a lot too. And a few Great White Egrets still around and  quite a few Whiskered Terns. One Speckled Pigeon by bridge. A White-rumped Seed-eater and a Rufous Scrub-Robin. Later went to check out 3 trees on Nile st where Abdim's are nesting, also a colony of Village Weavers nesting right opposite Grand Holiday Villa with Abdim's nest in same tree. No sign of any starlings yet but from above wet season nesting seems to be well underway. Also quite a lot of Egyptian Plovers around - one appeared to have an injured leg - so I am presuming it was feigning to attract me way from nearby chicks. Only resident Little Bee-eaters around.

June 17th. George and myself went over to Tuti this morning - other side of bridge and then over to fort area. George was happy to see his 5 new species – White-headed Babblers, Black Scrub-Robin, Egyptian Plovers, a group of 4 White-rumped Seedeaters and Sudan Golden Sparrows. Also of note was an Osprey flying near bridge (my first in Khartoum), my first Blue-eared Starling of year near fort, just the one  - we presumed it was Lesser because of size, one presumed Little Tern judging by size and colour in same area, some Whiskered Terns still around and also Great Egrets. Also about 5 Hoopoes on both parts of island (migrating north still?), about 6 Glossy Ibis, 1 Purple Heron, one Rufous Scrub-Robin.  

June 21st. Today midday was down on the exact spot of confluence between Blue/white Nile - two trees on riverbank with lots of Cattle Egrets nesting, one tree also had two pairs of Sacred Ibis nesting among egrets. Quite a few Great Egrets around as well as Whiskered Terns. One Striated Heron, and two small very white terns with black heads flew near - again pretty sure Little Terns (only other option would be Saunder's Tern). No starlings around.

June 24th. Popped over to Tuti - just on other side of bridge near sunset - not too much of note - lots of flocks of Sudan Golden Sparrows, many Ethiopian Swallows, Abdim's storks around and one other - only saw briefly but pretty sure Yellow-billed Stork, White-faced Whistling-Ducks, only a few Great Egrets. One pale tern, with some black on head. No starlings.

June 27th. Just down by Blue Nile sailing club at sunset - two Striated Herons, one African Pied Wagtail (a 'dirty' individual like I have seen before - so pretty sure always the same one - so presuming must be spending all wet season there) - a Sacred Ibis flew over. Lots of Cattle Egrets flying west to nests/roost (seem to be more around in wet season). From top floors of Burj Al Fateh last Tuesday - good views down on Little Egrets and Black-headed Herons sitting on nests in treetops below.

June 29th. Popped over to Tuti - other side of bridge at sunset. Of note - a pair of White-throated Bee-eaters, 5 White-rumped Seed-eaters, one Rufous Bush-Chat, a few young Little Bee-eaters, and the starlings are back - a few groups of 6/7 - think they were mainly Lesser Blue-eared but may have seen a few Greater too - have trouble distinguishing. There were a few Whiskered Terns and one Little Tern, plus the usual Black-headed Herons, Little Egrets and Great Egrets (most now with breeding black bills and one carrying nesting material to trees by Burj where obviously nesting).

July 14th. Latest update on Tuti - there today at sunset just opposite bridge - plenty of starlings around (Lesser and Greater Blue-eared - saw a lot of them yesterday near British embassy too), one Squacco Heron, 2 Striated Herons, the usual Black-headed Herons, Abdim's Storks, and Great Egrets still in impressive black bill/green-blue lores breeding plumage ( I don't recall this type of bill/lores colour change at any time in South America), a big flock of Sudan Golden Sparrows, 1 Pink-backed Pelican.

Latest report on Tuti yesterday 20 July in late afternoon - water levels are now up considerably and beaches now half submerged - I was on the eastern side of the island. Of note: 1 Striated Heron, 2 Grey Herons, 1 Hoopoe (migrant or would it be resident?), 1 Masked Shrike, 6 Speckled Pigeons on beach, a few Senegal Thick-knees, and 2 Long-tailed Nightjars (my first) about 6.00 pm - got close views as 1 startled them and one then settled close by after it flew up.

Today 21 July I went on bus to Wad Medani and walked along banks of Blue Nile for a few hours - Of note: lots of Black-headed Herons nesting in trees on banks of river, 2 Abyssinian Rollers, 2 Yellow-billed Storks, 1 Whiskered Tern, 2 White-throated Bee-eaters, and two firsts for me - a pair of Ruppell's Starlings, and a pair of Cinnamon Weavers (I watched male for about 30 mins - was engaged in courtship display hanging upside down and flapping wings, joined for some of time by female - at times male seemed to be  trying to nestbuild, pity I didn't have camera).

No comments:

Post a Comment