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Showing posts from 2015

New Bird Species for Pakistan

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I am honoured to announce a new addition to the Pakistan List of Birds. This amazing discovery was made and recorded on the 4 December 2015 by a skilful observer and photographer named Ahmad Kamal who is a new recruit to the growing band of Pakistani Birder/Photographers inspired by our own Swabi Birder RMK. Ahmad describes how he made this wonderful discovery below:
I have recently completed BE Mechatronics from EME NUST. I have a very strong passion for motorbikes and nature. To get a dose from nature I planned to travel from Lahore to Rawalpindi via Kashmir on a motorbike. It was an epic eight-day trip. I met my guardians in Bhimber and with them I left to visit Baghsar. We stopped for Zuhr Prayer and Lunch in Baghsar.
"I had noticed earlier that this area has attracted high concentrations of birds. Luckily I had my telephoto lens with me. I observed White-throated Fantail, Rufous Treepies, Oriental White-eyes, Crimson Sunbird, Great Barbet , Blue-throated Barbet, Great (Cinere…

Rare & Beautiful Birds Photographed near Islamabad

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There is nothing more exciting than receiving an email from my close friend RMK that has attachments as I know they will contain outstanding photographs of the beautiful birds he has seen in Pakistan.
It is now two years since we left Pakistan following our three-year residence and I miss my birding friends from Pakistan, South Africa, The Netherlands, Australia, France and the US. We shared many great times discovering the delights of birding in a country that has been in recent years, very under-watched, in ornithological terms. This makes birding in Pakistan both exciting and challenging. Exciting because of the discoveries that are being and can be made and challenging because of the security situation.
RMK is forging ahead with ambitious but achievable plans to help protect Pakistan’s wildlife and one hopes with an improving situation eco-tourism might offer the people of Pakistan opportunities that will improve their livelihoods but also provide a chance for the wildlife in a symb…

Red Avadavat Near Rawal Lake

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If ever a bird was so aptly described as a Strawberry, as was done by so by Swabi Birder, it is the male Red Avadavat (Estrilda amandava). His beautiful photograph of this stunning male bird shows it in all its glory.

This species is mostly associated with wetlands as they roost at night in large flocks using reedbeds as cover. Swabi Birder suggested that this bird might be breeding and he is probably correct. In Pakistan, Red Avadavats breed at various times throughout the year. Some breed at the onset of the first Monsoon rains and some breed up to the middle of winter. In Pakistan Roberts reported nests have been found in January, February and May as well.

The species is most common as a breeding resident in Sind and Punjab and Islamabad is at the northerly extreme of its distribution in Pakistan. In recent years the population in Pakistan had been reduced by the activities of bird trappers but it is still, fortunately, a species that the birder in Pakistan can see fairly frequentl…

Swabi Birder Visits the UK

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In August 2015 RMK (or Swabi Birder), as he will be henceforth known, visited the UK for a whistle-stop tour of birding sites wrapped around a business meeting in the North-east of England. During the trip, he visited the north Norfolk coast, the English Midlands, the North-east of England and the Scottish Highlands before ending up in London prior to his departure back to Pakistan. During the trip 102 species of birds were recorded but August is not the most productive birding month in the UK, although, obviously, waders figured prominently. The following photographs provide a flavour of the bird reserves and species Swabi Birder saw: