Monday, November 24, 2008

Long legged buzzard and others

Nice shot perching by Jan Sevcik. If I find a shot comparable to the beautiful view I had, I'll post it but you can also see it in a guide.. adult intermediate morph. In the past I've only had a view of these Buteos from underneath as they were soaring high but great to see view of the top of the bird in flight for a change

Nicest sighting of the day was a rather dramatic and brilliant view of a long legged buzzard, Buteo rufinus, low over north valley. For the previous few minutes we'd heard quite a bit of bird excitement.. chukar partridges clucking repeatedly from somewhere on the hillside to our north, not high up, and Eurasian jays screeching behind us in the pines up the slopes to the south. The latter was explained by a brief view of a smaller raptor, from what we could make out from a glimpse, a Eurasian sparrowhawk. Then the buzzard flew into view and I had a really nice view of his almost russet brown back and wing coverts as he glided down the valley barely at canopy level, quite magnificent. He was immediately pursued by a smaller bird which I didn't get a great view of as it was so fast and happened over a matter of seconds at a tricky angle for ID but seemed to be yet another sparrowhawk.

Garden today:
House sparrows, sunbird calling in the Bauhinia early afternoon but no song. A blackbird showed up just after 3 p.m. and sang a short while, also 'chak chak' and 'tzeet calls'. White wagtails heard from the street and also heard and seen flying to roof at the beginning of our walk. Have more recently arrived? Does seem that way based on the increase in calls I've been hearing over the past few days. .

Hooded crows: flying south to roost. Jackdaws heard : Feral pigeons, flock on top of building by lower Elias today
white spectacled bulbuls: some calls end of Shadiker

Weather: 13.5 -19.5 degrees C. During our walk, 18 falling to 17. Humidity, just under 30% and rising, ESE 1-2 kt.

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