Birding News

Index of birding news that are of interest to Western Palearctic birders. These include, among others, ‘mega rarities’ found in Northwest African, potential vagrants to the WP from adjacent areas, and other interesting articles.

Other birding news and national rarities (including many “first national records”) are filed under their respective country.

Breeding of Golden Nightjar in Western Sahara confirmed

Golden Nightjar / Engoulevent doré (Caprimulgus eximius) protecting its two young, Aousserd, Western Sahara, southern Morocco, 18 March 2019.

Breeding of Golden Nightjar in the Aousserd region, southern Morocco finally confirmed. An adult protecting two young were found at Oued Chiaf located some 55 km NW of Aousserd. La reproduction de l’Engoulevent doré dans la region d’Aousserd au sud du Maroc est enfin confirmée. Un adulte protégeant deux jeunes ont été observés à Oued …

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Tawny Eagle (Aquila rapax) in north-west Algeria

There were no documented breeding of the Tawny Eagle (Aquila rapax) anywhere in Northwest Africa since many years. In Morocco and Algeria for example, the last known breeding pairs date back to the early 1990s. Despite this lack of observations, the species may still breeds in some isolated places. And the recent observations in Algeria …

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First Wahlberg’s Eagle for Tunisia and 3rd for WP

An adult Wahlberg’s Eagle photographed in spring 2018 at El Haouaria, northern Tunisia. This is the first record for the country and third for the Western Palearctic. Un Aigle de Wahlberg adulte photographié en avril 2018 à El Haouaria dans le nord de la Tunisie. Il s’agit de la première observation pour le pays et …

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African Silverbills at Tamanrasset, southern Algeria

The African Silverbill (Euodice cantans) is distributed mainly across the Sahel region, East Africa and in the south and south-west of the Arabian Peninsula. There are also some isolated populations on both sides of the Sahel. In the Western Palearctic, the species breeds only in southern Algeria but its status is poorly known. For example, …

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Horus Swift: a potential Western Palearctic vagrant

As in the case of the Kordofan Lark, this blog-post deals also with another potential vagrant to the Western Palearctic region: the Horus Swift (Apus horus). In January 2018, Frédéric Bacuez and Bram Piot discovered about 18 Horus Swifts at the Doué river, located in northernmost Senegal. The identification, however, was not easy at the …

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First record of Blue-naped Mousebird for Algeria

Blue-naped Mousebird (Urocolius macrourus) photographed in the Tamanrasset region is the first record for Algeria. Première observation du Coliou huppé en Algérie (en français voir au dessous de la vidéo). The Blue-naped Mousebird was photographed and filmed at a village in the Tin-Zaouten district, located in the south of Tamanghasset province on 29 July 2018 …

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Big flock of Sudan Golden Sparrow at Tamanrasset, Algeria

A big flock of Sudan Golden Sparrow (Passer luteus) was photographed a few days ago in the Tamanrasset region, southern Algeria (Soufyane Bekkouche). A Blue-naped Mousebird (Urocolius macrourus) was also photographed in the same area. The birds were photographed at a village in the Tin-Zaouten district, located in the south of Tamanghasset province. The village …

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Tawny Eagle (Aquila rapax) in north-east Algeria

This large eagle was photographed this week in north-east Algeria by Mourad Harzallah (a very good naturalist and a local ecotourism guide). The photographer said the eagle was much bigger than the Bonelli’s Eagle (Aquila fasciata), and some of the photos below also attest this. Several people in a FB group suggested that it’s a …

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The Algerian Nuthatch twitch: easier than you think

The Algerian Nuthatch (Sitta ledanti) is a dream species for every Western Palearctic birder, especially so since the 1990s with the start of what they call in Algeria the “Black Decade”. However, although the security situation in the whole country has improved greatly since many years now, many WP birders still hesitating to visit Algeria …

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ID of Kordofan Lark: a potential Western Palearctic vagrant

Kordofan Lark (Mirafra cordofanica). The name sounds familiar to Western Palearctic birders because until recently the species was included in the WP list. However, Crochet & Haas (2013) suggested that the species should be deleted. Here is a (slightly edited) quote from this article: The distribution of Kordofan Lark as shown in Snow & Perrins …

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