First records

Articles about the first records of different bird species for Morocco, Algeria or Tunisia (and occasionally for adjacent countries as well).

First record of Western Reef Egret for Algeria

Western Reef Egret / Aigrette à gorge blanche (Egretta gularis), Mekhada marches, El Tarf, eastern Algeria (Salah Telailia).

The nearest breeding populations of the Western Reef Eegret (Egretta gularis) to Northwest Africa are located in coastal West Africa (nominate subspecies) and in the Red Sea (subspecies schistacea). On 17 July 2018, a dark-morph Western Reef Egret was observed in the Mekhada marches, a Ramsar site located in the wilaya of El Tarf, northeast …

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First Rustic Bunting for Algeria and Northwest Africa

The Rustic Bunting (Emberiza rustica) breeds from Scandinavia eastwards across Eurasia. It winters in eastern China and Japan. The species is in great trouble as its global population size has declined by a 75–87% over a period of 30 years (see: Edenius et al. 2017. The next common and widespread bunting to go? Global population …

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First record of Eastern Imperial Eagle for Tunisia and Northwest Africa

An Eastern Imperial Eagle (Aquila heliaca) was photographed in spring 2017 at El Haouaria, northern Tunisia (Mohamed El Golli). El Haouaria, located at the extreme north-east of the Cap Bon peninsula, is known as a major point for migratory raptors following the Central Mediterranean Flyway (continental Italy-Sicily-Tunisia). In our opinion, this is the first record …

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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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First record of Cinereous Vulture for The Gambia

Until recently, the Cinereous Vulture (Aegypius monachus) was considered as an accidental visitor to Morocco (and Northwest Africa in general). But now it’s actually a regular migrant and wintering species in small numbers. Movements of the species across the Sahara to West Africa are even rarer, nevertheless a few birds have reached sub-Saharan Africa since …

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First record of Cinereous Vulture for Mauritania

Cinereous Vulture (Aegypius monachus) is considered an accidental visitor in Morocco. But based on recent observations, the species should be regarded as a migrant and wintering visitor in Morocco. For example, 4 birds were counted at Jbel Moussa in spring 2017 and 6 birds in spring 2016 (including 3 birds photographed together on 7 May). …

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First records of Pectoral Sandpiper for Algeria

The Pectoral Sandpiper (Calidris melanotos) breeds in northern North America (Canada and Alaska) and northern Siberia, and winters in southern South America, southeastern Australia, Tasmania and New Zealand. It’s one of the most observed Nearctic species in Western Europe and also in parts of the west coast of Africa. For example, the species was removed …

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First record of Baird’s Sandpiper for Morocco

Yet another productive birding trip to Zemamra – located some km inland from Oualidia – this autumn. A Baird’s Sandpiper (Calidris bairdii) was photographed at this site by Benoît Maire on 28 October 2016. Three weeks earlier, an American Golden Plover (Pluvialis dominica) was photographed there by the same observer. The Baird’s Sandpiper observation would …

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