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.

Allen’s Gallinule at Tachektent, Dakhla-Aousserd road

Allen’s Gallinule / Talève d’Allen (Porphyrio alleni), Tachektent, Oued Dahab, 18 Feb. 2016 (Mohamed Mediani)

Allen’s Gallinule (Porphyrio alleni) found at Tachektent on the Dakhla-Aousserd road yesterday (18 February 2016) by Mohamed Mediani. This is the 11th record for Morocco. The bird photographed by Ali Irizi at Oued Massa on 28 December 2014 and found three days later by Daniel Vrauwdeunt at the same site should be counted as one record in my opinion. …

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Golden Nightjar at Aousserd: first Western Palearctic record

Golden Nightjar / Engoulevent doré (Caprimulgus eximius), Aousserd, Western Sahara, Morocco; 3 May 2015 (Jurek Dyczkowski)

A Golden Nightjar (Caprimulgus eximius) was observed crossing the road between Dakhla and Aousserd and hit by the observers’ car and died on 3 May 2015 (J. Dyczkowski & R. Smykala). This is the first confirmed record for Morocco and the Western Palearctic. This interesting record confirms once more that the Aousserd region is one of the best birding …

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Sudan Golden Sparrows at Bir Anzarane, Western Sahara

Sudan Golden Sparrow (Passer luteus) and Desert Sparrow (Passer simplex), Bir Anzarane, southern Morocco, 30 Jan. 2015 (Abdeljebbar Qninba).

A male Sudan Golden Sparrow (Passer luteus) was photographed yesterday at a drinking site near Bir Anzarane, about 140 Km north-east of Dakhla, southern Morocco. The species was recorded during a scientific trip coordinated by the Association Nature Initiative (A.N.I). Abdeljebbar Qninba first saw and identified the species, Abdelaziz Benhoussa, Mohamed Ibn Tattou, Mohamed Laghdaf Khayya, Hicham El …

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First record of American Purple Gallinule for Morocco

American Purple Gallinule / Talève violacée (Porphyrio martinicus), Kenitra, Morocco, 15 Nov. 2014 (Antoine Rougeron / Surfbirds).

An American Purple Gallinule (Porphyrio martinicus) found at Kenitra, northwest Morocco on 15 November 2014. This is the first record for Morocco and Northwest Africa. Thomas S. Lahlafi, who reported the news, commented: “The bird found very weak in the city of Kenitra three days ago by my uncle, and was collected to his garden. …

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First White-backed Vulture for Morocco and North Africa

White-backed Vulture (Gyps africanus) and Griffon Vulture (Gyps fulvus) on the right, Tétouan, northern Morocco, 25 May 2014

A mega Western Palearctic rarity! Yesterday, we reported the observation of 3 Rüppell’s Vultures at a carcass near Tétouan, northern Morocco. Today, we went back to the site and to our great pleasure we found a White-backed Vulture (Gyps africanus) with the other birds that roosted locally the previous night. At our arrival at the …

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Rüppell’s Vultures at Tétouan, northern Morocco

Rüppell’s Vulture (Gyps rueppelli) with a Griffon Vulture (Gyps fulvus), Tétouan, northern Morocco, 24 May 2014

It seems like these Rüppell’s Vultures are following our footsteps. This time, we didn’t even go to see them. They literally crossed our path! Early morning today, we went to Smir wetland for our usual birding and also to survey the local heronry to see the progression of the breeding season of the Eurasian Spoonbill …

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7 Rüppell’s Vultures in northern Morocco in 2 days

After the observation of 3 Rüppell’s Vultures (Gyps rueppellii) at Jbel Bouhachem in the afternoon of 10 May. Next day (11 May) we went to Jbel Moussa on the Strait of Gibraltar to observe bird migration with the hope of seeing the Rüppell’s again (we literally wanted to intercept them at the Strait, because we …

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