White Stork nests and Humans

Unique and original nest! Seeing a White Stork nest built on a natural setting like this one is rare nowadays. Aguelmous, Middle Atlas, 4 Jan. 2019 (‎Abdellatif Al Ouardi‎).

White Stork (Ciconia ciconia) is among a few bird species that remarkably adapted to human activities. During the last decades, they started to take advantages of the rubbish dumps which provide an extra and constant food source throughout the year. This and other factors have led some birds in southern Spain and northwest Africa (Morocco …

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Breeding of Glossy Ibis at Smir heronry, northern Morocco

Breeding of Glossy Ibis (Plegadis falcinellus) at Smir heronry, northern Morocco

Glossy Ibis (Plegadis falcinellus) has finally returned to breed in northern Morocco after it has deserted the region for nearly a century. An important breeding colony of the species was discovered in the heronry installed in dune vegetation near Smir marshes (northern Morocco) by one of us, Rachid El Khamlichi, on 1st May 2011. Several …

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Andalusian Buttonquail in Morocco and the Western Palearctic

Andalusian Buttonquail (Turnix sylvaticus sylvaticus), south of Sidi Abed, September 2007 (Benoît Maire)

The Andalusian Buttonquail (Turnix sylvaticus sylvaticus) became almost extinct throughout its Mediterranean range except in Morocco where there have been more or less regular observations until 1988. Since that date, however, the species went undetected until 2000. Since the beginning of the new millennium, new sightings (including the first-ever photograph of a living wild bird …

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Status of Kelp Gull in Morocco and the Western Palearctic

Cape Gull (Larus dominicanus vetula), Khnifiss Lagoon, Morocco (Lars Andersen)

Cape Gull – the African subspecies of the widespread Kelp Gull – does not breed at Khnifiss Lagoon, Morocco, as reported earlier by Bergier et al. (2009). A thorough analysis by Olof Jönsson of the available photographs showed that the large, dark-backed gulls breeding at Khnifiss are, in fact, Great Black-backed Gulls. This is the …

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Wintering of Penduline Tits (Remiz pendulinus) in Morocco

Eurasian Penduline Tit (Remiz pendulinus) ringed at Smir marshes, northern Morocco, 13 November 2006 (Ian Thompson).

The Eurasian Penduline Tit (Remiz pendulinus) was until recently considered to be an accidental winter visitor to Morocco. Regular wintering was suspected in the north-west of the country but had been poorly documented. The ringing data collected in the Smir marshes during the period 2004–2008 indicate that Eurasian Penduline Tits regularly winter in Morocco. During …

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Allen’s Gallinule found dead at Tahaddart, Morocco

Allen’s Gallinule (Porphyrio alleni), Tahaddart estuary, northern Morocco, 16 January 2011 (Mohamed Amezian).

I found an Allen’s Gallinule (Porphyrio alleni) at Tahaddart estuary, just south of Tangier, on 16 January 2011. Unfortunately it was dead. Field work: That day, I joined a team from the Scientific Institute of Mohammed V University to participate in the annual mid-winter waterbird census in different wetlands of north-west Morocco. Before meeting the …

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White-headed Duck breeding again in Morocco

White-headed Duck / Érismature à tête blanche (Oxyura leucocephala), Sidi Boughaba (Said Lahrouz)

The White-headed Duck (Oxyura leucocephala) start breeding again in Morocco for the first time in almost a century. The endangered White-headed Duck went extinct as a breeding species in Morocco in the first half of 20th century. It also disappeared as a wintering visitor. The Spanish population has also decreased dramatically between the 1950s and …

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Breeding of Cricket Warbler at Aousserd, southern Morocco

Cricket Warbler / Prinia à front écailleux (Spiloptila clamans) with nest materials at Oued Jenna, Aousserd, 3 February 2010 (Fabian Schneider).

The Cricket Warbler or Cricket Longtail (Spiloptila clamans) is a small bird native to the Sahel region where its breeding area is restricted to a narrow band stretching from southern Mauritania and northern Senegal eastwards to Sudan and Eritrea. The species has recently been discovered in Oued Jenna some 40 Km before the village of …

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