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Showing posts from 2014

Islamabad Birder Alert a Crested Kingfisher at Rawal Lake

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It’s big news for the birders and photographers of Islamabad. I was feeling lazy as, Islamabad had been cloudy for few days but when I heard the news of CRIMSON SUNBIRD in the city I couldn’t wait to pick my photographic gear. In search of the Crimson Sunbird, I left my home with two of my birding friends AF and ZR to seek out this amazing bird.
On Tuesday 23 December 2014 we started our search around 1300 hours as the sun started to appear. We searched around our Marsh Area, the southern side of Rawal Lake and around Bani Gala but couldn’t find anything, except this beautiful PLAIN PRINIA playing in the mustard fields.


After that I asked my friend to take a drive to western side of Rawal Lake hoping we may see something on that shoreline. We drove there and we found three SPOTTED OWLETs sun bathing.
I stopped my car and we started moving in different areas in search of the Crimson Sunbird. The area was full of Red-vented Bulbuls, Red Avadavats and Prinias and my eyes were caught by this…

New Nature Reserve at Rawal Lake Phase One Complete!

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Hello readers; I (RMK) am the happiest man around today, a dream come true at last. The Himalayan wildlife Foundation (HWF) has succeeded in placing buoys or markers around the Eastern Shoreline of Rawal Lake. This is the first phase of creating a Nature Reserve and it means that hunting and fishing will be prohibited and boats will not be allowed into the area designated for the protection of wildlife at Rawal Lake. This is truly a remarkable achievement and will become a major contribution towards the conservation of Pakistan’s incredible fauna and flora.
On 12 December 2014, an officer from the HWF accompanied me and we took boat trip over the whole area of the lake. It was a perfect moment of my life and I really missed my colleagues and friends: Shadmena, Richard and Islbirder with whose assistance the first phase is completed. This is, without doubt, a massive achievement by the HWF and huge congratulations to them.
We also selected a bird watching point and I believe that soon it…

Vultures in Islamabad

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I am feeling amazing these days, as many young guys from Islamabad and around the country are contacting me one way or another asking a simple question “R U THE ONE WRITING THE BLOG BIRDING ISLAMABAD.”Humbly, I tell them yes it’s me and Islbirder. These feelings can’t be temporary as many people are now holding their cameras and looking for birds all around Islamabad and soon a community in the Capital city will be there to raise their voice for the conservation of the Pakistan’s wonderful birdlife.
It’s been long that I wanted to go out for a full day birding but Islamabad is mostly choked these days. Anyway on Sunday 7 December 2014 my friends and me from Islamabad planned a morning trip to the Margalla Hills. The light was perfect and I was expecting large numbers of birds to show up. Kharian is my favourite place in the Margallas. Beside having some time in the middle of the nature, I also interact with a few of the villagers in the area.
We left around 0700 hrs and reached Makneyal…

Identity of Mystery Bird Solved

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Thank you for the responses we received in relation to the identity of the Bunting that RMK photographed in the D12 area of Islamabad on Saturday 8 November 2014. The bird in the photograph below is a STRIOLATED BUNTING (Embariza striolata). This species was previously known as House Bunting but, clearly, that was too easy to spell. The species is usually found much further south than Islamabad and to the west of the River Indus. As a sparse resident the Striolated Bunting does not normally stray far from its breeding areas and is not prone to irruptions or large movements. Consequently, this was an excellent find by RMK.
As Pakistan enters the best time of year to be birding I am so, so jealous not to be there. To RMK and all of my birding friends in Islamabad and Sialkot enjoy the delights that the Birding Season has to offer. Islbirder

Sorry my Friend I Found it Without You and Mystery Bird Challenge!

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On Saturday 8 November 2014, I took a serious Birder and a friend of ISLBIRDER on a birding trip near Islamabad. The light was extraordinary and I was praying to find some exclusive bird that I had not seen before.  When I am writing the blog, I was just thinking that it took Islbirder and me two years trying to photograph a Wallcreeper but we never photographed one. Islbirder did see one (at the ruins in Taxila) and I wasn’t there with him, but the mission to photograph this species was my responsibility.
This lovely morning when I started off with my friends from UK, I saw a lovely CRESTED LARK, singing and was enjoying the beautiful morning. 
I know ISLBIRDER will say a big WOW, when he sees the images below of the female WALLCREEPER that we found in the D12 Sector of Islamabad. Sorry my friend we never found that together but today I found that for you. :-)



I was very excited the whole day and kept looking for something new. Not far when we started our drive, we found EURASIAN SKYLAR…

Thank You My Friend

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On Sunday 2 November 2014 RMK kindly agreed to guide a visiting birder around some of the birding sites surrounding Islamabad. Whilst most of the winter visitors and altitudinal migrants are yet to arrive there was plenty to keep everyone happy. Some species would have been familiar to the guest but others would have confirmed he was in a foreign land with a most spectacular and exciting avifauna. How I miss living in Pakistan!
RMK was kind enough to forward me the photographs he obtained on the day. These were just opportunist shots taken on the birding trip and did not involve a hide or hours of careful planning. However, I am sure our valued readers would agree that they are impressive nonetheless.
The first photo shows evidence of birds moving around during this autumnal phase with a flight shot of a group of COMMON WOODPIGEON, This species is now a common garden bird in much of western Europe but in Pakistan it is much more difficult to find being sparsely and widely spread.
The Mar…