First trip to Israel. Wife, mother, sister and brother-in-law participated and they are NOT birdwatchers.
Weather: Warm (20-25 C at daytime), sunny with some clouds. Two days (27th and 28th ) were very windy with strong winds from the south. The weather in Petra was quite cold with heavy overcast and really bad for watching vultures and other species.
Other birdwatchers: A female Finnish birdwatcher at North Beach first morning. Through IBCE (International Birdwatching Centre of Eilat) I met an American living in Brussels and an Englishman living in Frankfurt. There were also two Danish guys whom I met later and a Swedish guy who I met in Petra.
96-12-25 Cemetery 07.00-09.00
96-12-26 North Beach-Arawa Border 07.00-11.30, Water Pump Station 15.00-17.15
96-12-27 Guided Tour by International Birdwatching Centre of Eilat 07.30-13.30, North Beach 15.00-17.00
96-12-28 Km 33, Km 40 07.00-13.00, North Beach 15.00-17.00
96-12-30 North Beach-Arawa Border 07.00-10.30
96-12-31 Nahal Shahmon 09.00-10.00
Contact IBCE to see if there are any organised trips led by local birders. Very effective if you quickly wants to see the interesting species.
The interesting birds at Petra were found from the entrance and before entering the gorge. When in Petra head for the "High Place" - in nice weather an astounding good observation spot. The walk to the "High Place" is fairly easy but it takes about 45 minutes to get there. The rest of Petra is not so interesting from a birdwatching view.
E = Eilat
WPS = Water Pumping Station
NB = North Beach
SP = Salt Pans
NS = Nahal Shahmon
Cem = Cemetery
IBCE = Tour by IBCE
Podiceps ruficollis Little Grebe 1 at K18.5 Podiceps cristatus Great Crested Grebe 1 at NB Podiceps nigricollis Black-necked Grebe 2-3 at K18.5 Calonectris diomedea Cory's Shearwater 2 at NB Sula leucogaster Brown Booby 3 at NB Phalacrocorax carbo Cormorant NB Egretta gularis Western Reef Heron 15-20 at NB Egretta alba Great White Egret 1 at SP Ardea cinerea Grey Heron NB,SP Phoenicopterus ruber Flamingo Around 20 at K20 Tadorna tadorna Shelduck K20 Anas crecca Common Teal K20,K40 Anas platyrhynchos Mallard K20 Anas acuta Northern Pintail K20 Anas clypeata Northern Shoveler K18.5, K20 Accipiter nisus Sparrowhawk WPS Buteo buteo Steppe Buzzard 1 at K18.5 Buteo rufinus Long-legged Buzzard 1 at Ein Netafim Aquila nipalensis Steppe Eagle 1 at WPS, 33 at Petra Aquila heliaca Imperial Eagle 1 adult at WPS Hieraaetus pennatus Booted Eagle 1 light phase at Arawa border Falco tinnunculus Eurasian Kestrel IBCE, Petra Falco biamircus Lanner WPS, Eilat (while waiting for the jeep) Falco peregrinus Peregrine Falcon 1 adult female at K18.5 Ammoperdix heyi Sand Partridge IBCE Gallinula chloropus Moorhen K18.5 Fulica atra Eurasian Coot K18.5, K40 Himantopus himantopus Black-winged Stilt SP, K20 Recurvirostra avosetta Avocet 2 at K20 Char. leschenaultii Greater Sand Plover 24 at Oil harbour in Eilat (IBCE) Char. alexandrinus Kentish Plover 1 at K20 Calidris minuta Little Stint K20 Calidris alpina Dunlin K20 Tringa totanus Redshank NB,SP, K20 Tringa stagnatilis Marsh Sandpiper 1 at SP Tringa nebularia Greenshank SP,K20 Larus leucopthalamus White-eyed Gull Around 40-50 at the most NB Larus ichtyaetus Great Black-H. Gull 1 juv at NB Larus ridibundus Black-headed Gull NB,SP Larus genei Slender-billed Gull 2 at NB Larus cachinnans/arm. Yellow-legged Gull NB, SP Sterna caspia Caspian Tern 2 at NB, 1 at SP Pter. Lichtensteinii Lichtenstein's Sandgrouse 32 at WPS Columba livia Rock Dove IBCE, Petra Streptopelia decaocto Collared Dove Eilat,K40 Streptopelia turtur Turtle Dove Eilat Streptopelia senegalensis Laughing Dove Eilat Oena capensis Namaqua Dove 1 f at Arawa border, 2 f at K20 Otus brucei Striated Scops Owl 1 at NS on two occasions Apus pallidus Pallid Swift 2 at K33 Alcedo atthis Kingfisher 1 at SP Ceryle rudis Pied Kingfisher At least 3 at NB Merops orientalis Little Gr. Bee-eater IBCE, SP, K40, total of around 40 Upupa epops Hoopoe 1 at K40 Ammomanes cincturus Bar-tailed Desert Lark 2 at K33 Ammomanes deserti Desert Lark Ein Netafim, Cem, Petra, IBCE Alaemon alaudipes Hoopoe Lark 3 at K33 Galerida cristata Crested Lark Arawa border, K33 Ptyonoprogne fuligula Rock Martin Arawa border, K40 Anthus pratensis Meadow Pipit NB Anthus spinoletta Water Pipit NB Anthus rubescens Buff-Bellied Pipit 1 at Arawa Border Motacilla alba White Wagtail Eilat Pycnonotus xanthopygos White-spectacled Bulbyl Eilat, Cem, NB, Arawa, K40 Luscinia svecica Bluethroat Arawa border, K40 Phoenicurus ochruros Black Redstart K40, Petra Cercomela melanura Blackstart Cem, IBCE, Petra, K40, NS Oenanthe deserti Desert Wheatear Two males at K20 and a female at K33 Oenanthe lugens Mourning Wheatear 1 male at Cem, 1 male at Petra Oenanthe monacha Hooded Wheatear IBCE, 1 male 1 and 1 f. at K20 Oenanthe leucopyga Wh.-cr. Bl. Wheatear Cem, IBCE Prinia gracilis Graceful Warbler NB, IBCE, K40 Scotocerca inquieta Scrub Warbler IBCE, Petra Acrocephalus stentoreus Clam. Reed Warbler 1 singing at K18.5 Sylvia melanocephala Sardinian Warbler IBCE, Cem, K40, Arawa Border Sylvia nana Desert Warbler 3 at K33 Phylloscopus collybita Chiffchaff K40, Arawa Border Turdoides squamiceps Arabian Babbler K40 Nectarinia osea Palestine Sunbird Cem, IBCE, NS, K40 Lanius excubitor Great Grey Shrike 1 at K40 Corvus splendens Indian House Crow Eilat, NB Corvus ruficollis Brown-necked Raven IBCE, K40 Corvus rhipidurus Fan-tailed Raven Around 100 at Petra Onychognathus tristramii Tristram's Grackle Eilat, Around 3000 at K40 Passer domesticus House Sparrow Eilat, IBCE, Petra, Cem Passer hispaniolensis Spanish Sparrow NB, Arawa Border, Petra Passer moabiticus Dead Sea Sparrow K18.5 Fringilla coelebs Chaffinch 1 female at Arawa Border Carduelis chloris Greenfinch Arawa Border, Petra, K20 Carduelis carduelis Goldfinch 1 at K40 Rhodospiza obsoleta Desert Finch Around 30 at Arawa Border Bucanetes githagineus Trumpeter Finch Around 20 at ICBE Carpodacus synoicus Sinai Rosefinch Around 10 at Petra
Gavia arctica Black-throated diver 1 at New Lagoon Butorides striatus Green-backed Heron 1 at NB (in the fishfarms) Torgos tracheliotus Lappet-faced vulture 1 at Petra Sylvia leucomelaena Arabian Warbler Several around K40 Phylloscopus humei Hume's Warbler 1 at K40
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