Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Late July, Early August obs.

Our street (betw centre and top left) overlooking valley. Valley road can be clearly seen just to the right of and down from the buildings, and pumping station just visible at near end. From there a dirt road loops around to the right and away again towards north gazelle field, (top right)

Pic. taken from 'villa' hill just to the south of windsurfer hill. (out of sight to the right)

Tuesday 27th July

sunbird : song in Bauhinia early/mid afternoon

bee-eaters: calls about 6 a.m. but not heard on walk

Syrian woodpecker:
call in pines south side of north valley watercourse.

Hooded crows and jackdaws: about , flying over, calls

gazelle: 6 in view (1) in ploughed area behind almond row, north gazelle field, rest beyond grazing amongst the dry grasses and oats.

Hobby: calls from shaft/owl glade pines area

Turtle doves:
not noticed today

s: 'Moon line' blackbird (? or close neighbour) in song in tree by east watercourse dirt road approaching bridge.

Graceful warblers
: calls

Collared doves: some coos and activity by north valley dirt road, betw. trees.

Stone curlew
heard on our later walk, about 10.30 pm

Wednesday 28th July

Bulbul started up about 5.20 a.m.

Last few mornings release of powerful fragrance just after 6 a.m. Only thing blooming in the gardens nearby right now is jasmine. Could it be that?

sunbird : squeak calls shortly after dawn. song in Bauhinia again mid afternoon, calls also heard various places along dirt roads last few days.

bee-eaters: calls about 6 a.m.

Syrian woodpecker:
calls in pines

gazelle: 2 in view in ploughed area behind almond row, north gazelle field and dry grass just beyond. 3 more north windsurfer hill, near fence.

Hobby: 2 falcons in air above east field, territorial dispute, one from Hizmeh being 'headed off' by another coming from Mir forest. First seemed to have rufous tail, no bands, spread a little occasionally while wheeling about.. also quite a bit of brown in plumage, and dark top. Couldn't find a match so I'm thinking it was a juvenile.

Turtle doves:
not noticed today

s: 'tzeet' alarm call
great tits: calls, scolds heard various parts of woods .. several times in last week or so.
Graceful warblers : calls heard on walk and from house.

Collared doves: some coos and activity around cistern area.
Stone curlew: today?

Thursday 29th July- Wednesday 4 August

gazelle: August 3rd: at least 8 by north valley watercourse betw. euc grove near bat cave and ploughed area, small groups. One consisted of two adult males and a younger individual, young male I think. Prob the same two males that have often been seen in the woods near the bat cave. Then female and young seen farther east more out in the open , another small group in ploughed area. 1 buck following another individual along watercourse but not clear if it was one of first bucks we saw earlier.
August 4th: 5 on open west slopes windsurfer hill - two together and three a little farther south. Just up from them a small group of hooded crows were busy doing their windsurfer thing, the breezes were quite brisk up there and perfect for their sport.

Bulbul started up between 5.20 a.m. to 5.45 a.m. over last few days, mostly within five minutes of 5.20, sky dark/just beginning to get light.

sunbird : some squeak calls in Bauhinia and cape honeysuckle, some song or subsong in Bauhinia some days various times of afternoon.

bee-eaters: calls about 6 a.m. or shortly after most days but not seen in valley so much last few days.

Syrian woodpecker:
calls in pines, various parts of woods most days.

Hobby: Some high multi-note calls various parts of woods, brief views.

Turtle doves:
not heard or seen much lately but probably still about, quiet.

s: 'some alarm calls, some brief song heard.

Graceful warblers : calls heard esp by valley road and down near look out corner.

Collared doves: some coos and activity along east valley dirt road, trees.

Period till 10 August:

Occasional sightings of up to about half a dozen gazelle on west slopes of windsurfer hill and north gazelle field, adult buck when seen, in gazelle field.

nursing out on a rock- tolerated two nursing but became a little aggressive when another two also wanted to nurse. She would make low pitch grunting sounds and snap at them. The youngsters weren't the smallest I've seen, must have been out and about for a couple of weeks at least. They made occasional low volume squeaking noises as they nursed. The young one in front kept switching from front to back on left sides, perhaps mother is getting dry. She was quite shaggy blonde which showed me that these more mature looking individuals can still nurse.
Bee-eaters regularly heard from house at about 6 a.m.
Bulbuls now starting around 5.30 a.m.
Sunbirds: occasional song/subsong from Bauhinia
House sparrows and Laughing doves, still cooing, about house and gardens as usual
Hooded crows and jackdaws heard.

Afternoon temps between 30- 38 degrees C.

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