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Showing posts from December, 2012

The Eastern Shore of Rawal Lake & The Marsh

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On Sunday 9 December 2012 we ventured onto the eastern shoreline of Rawal Lake to look for wintering duck, waders and gulls. As we made our way through the grasses and reeds towards the lake several ZITTING CISTICOLA were present. This diminutive but smart little Warbler has a distinctive call that gives it the name. Closer towards the lake were half a dozen LITTLE RINGED PLOVER and as many PIED KINGFISHER hovered over the shallows in the distance. There were numerous BLACK-HEADED GULL and several PALLAS’S (or GREAT BLACK-HEADED GULL); these are striking birds and a couple of the adults amongst them were sporting the black head and yellow bill of the summer plumage. 
A few GREY HERON were around the margin of the lake and at least one GREAT EGRET. Other than the Little Ringed Plovers waders consisted of a COMMON SANDPIPER, some TEMINCK’S STINT, a few NORTHERN LAPWING and several GREENSHANK. There were some EURASIAN COOT occupying the shallow and seven POCHARD in slightly deeper wate…

ISLBIRDER Bounces Back with Two Ticks

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Saturday 8 December 2012 was a memorable day for many reasons; not least because ISLBIRDER added two more species to his Pakistan List. However, we were lucky in other ways and by experiencing a huge concentration of species in a very small area of deciduous woodland that consisted of mature trees; sadly, a dwindling asset to the country’s population and wildlife.
We began with a brisk walk to the Margalla Hills Trail 5 Spring, the scene of recent successes (and dips for some). The usual cast of regular species were present but there were large numbers of one in particular, the LEMON-RUMPED WARBLER. At one time the whole dell was full of them and we searched through all to see if we could find a similarly sized Brooks’s Leaf Warbler but to no avail. The beautiful Lemon-rumped Warblers are a joy to behold with their long and bright supercilium, the yellowish crown stripe, their double wing-bar and the lemon rump that provides their name. However, it is their tiny size and arboreal acr…

Plumbeous Redstart A Life Tick

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Saturday 1 December 2012 found us deep into the Margalla Hills National Park on a cold and frosty morning. We visited three beautiful and different valleys and thereby guaranteed ourselves a greater variety of birds. As you will note from this and previous blogs Islbirder is extremely fortunate to have as friends and companions some very talented wildlife photographers who, very kindly, allow me to use their photographs to illustrate our recorded birding adventures.
When we arrived at our first valley the ground was very icy and it had to be Islbirder who slipped and landed heavily on his backside. Fortunately, natural padding sustained most of the impact but a huge black bruise covering one buttock bears testimony to the combination of an overweight birder and a very hard rock.
The sight of the fast-flowing crystal clear stream with mist above the water indicated that it was warmer that the surrounding air soon dispelled the pain in the bum and we began looking for birds. The first …