Monday, August 1, 2011

First Week of August

Diminutive viper's bugloss (Echium) on way up out of sapling field, near pumping station

(add here also black nightshade pic * )

Monday 1st August

Akiva heard bee-eaters over neighbourhood earlier in afternoon.

Walking up windsurfer hill dirt road from cistern: saw 3 gazelle including one horn betw. road and small olive grove. Farther up, turned right at slope, group of six gazelle headed up hill ahead of us, adult male in rear. Then saw two more running by tree line, same group separated, or two of group down by olive grove.. I consider less likely.

Calls from east field, larks? or wheatears but more of tril but didn't see. More likely to be larks as male wheatears would have been much easier to spot.

Falcon over field and road, mostly dark.. hobby most likely but didn't see any white under.

Sparrowhawk earlier over north watercourse dirt road/service road. Lots of Syrian woodpecker calls.. Eurasian jays about.

Tuesday 2nd August

Walked up to the hidden watercourse and circled around slopes north hill, back down to look-out corner and east watercourse..

bee-eaters, between 2 dozen and 30 first saw over Hizmeh or road, then headed over valley, over edge of our neighbourhood.

, 2 or 3 bucks between bat cave and hidden watercourse area. North field: another buck and at least 3 females and well grown young. As we got down to hoopoe corner, another adult male ran into pines.

a fox, up by hidden watercourse chukars, at least two on open ground, hoopoe, north field, flat area where chukars, flew down to pines. Collared and turtle doves, former various open places, latter, cooing in trees, greenfinches some twitters in pines look out corner area, black eared wheatear male bunker ruins as the other day, and nearby field. Akiva tried to get pics, Syrian woodpeckers calls in Eucs, circling hobby over cistern area and north fields.

Jackdaw flock, calling, coming down from Ar Ram upper slopes, hooded crows about, house sparrow flock working edge of neighbourhood where garbage. Young or female sunbird brief visit to bougainvillea near edge of neighbourhood.

Wednesday 3rd August

hyraxes, by valley road, saw a number of gazelle.. 9- 1 by fence favoured area, 2 by olives, 4 betw olives and road, 2 more in centre woods east valley. One was standing repeatedly on its hindlegs to nibble at olive branches.. the olives are ripe enough now! Also hobby, stone curlew, calls black eared wheatear at bunker rubble, several bedraggled looking jays cistern area, jackdaws flock north of windsurfer, collared doves cistern area, great tit off valley road.

Thursday 4th August

4 gazelle in the Pistacia orchard, 1 adult male in company of three others including 1 horn, as seen before in that area, from there to small olive orchard.. though yesterday more gazelle there, looked like members of the larger horned gazelle's herd also using that area. chukars, (somewhere near north watercourse) stone curlew, calls from north field; hobbies, as dusk approached.. much fuss over east watercourse.. short calls and repeated high calls.. sounded alarm. Another raptor call amongst them, not sure what.
hoopoes, at least 4 around hoopoe corner, foraging on dirt road and/or flying into pines. Prinia calls. Prinia calls around fore part of gazelle field, Jays active, Looked for black eared wheater but not around rubble, perhaps we just got there too late, already sunset, same considerations as with the black redstart.. gets too late for them to hawk for insects there. bee-eaters, flock heard, didn't get count, quite high over Pistacia orchard area, ring neck parakeets around street on and off all day, bulbul, in ours or next door's garden.

Saturday 6th August

1 gazelle, buck, amongst saplings just across northwatercourse near shortcut from valley road to dirt road

From house: ring neck parakeets a few times, bulbul melodic calls now and again, laughing doves through the day pretty much, simplest coos, brief Prinia call, jackdaw flock

On walk: flock 9 bee-eaters, several hoopoes in region of hoopoe corner but not together, nice view hobby perched near top of pine.. Syrian woodpecker a couple of feet down from it apparently frozen in place.. Eurasian jays seen flying, 2 , jackdaw flock 30-40 plus, graceful warbler by stone wall forepart north gazelle field, greenfinches twittering bunker pines, collared doves, cistern area

stone curlew calls dusk, bats , several flitting close to us over valley road and around pines on bank.

Black nightshade Solanum nigrum growing in many places in the garden, cropped up by itself.

Sunday 7th August

Canid in pines to west of dirt road ascending from cistern to windsurfer hill, dark saddle like markings, taller, more dog like than fox, higher off ground though very pale tail tip (which I did not think jackals had) and solitary, not such a bushy tail as fox.. a jackal?? But solitary? Do they hybridize with foxes? Every time we've seen these ''dark foxes'' they have been *solitary* but different look from the red/grey foxes. We have also not heard howling typical of jackals.

bee-eater calls, Eurasian jays active, collared dove brief coo near cistern, Syrian woodpecker calls, graceful warbler calls, ring neck parakeets heard earlier,

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