Wednesday, December 16, 2009

IOC and brief Ma'agan Michael

Yesterday we had a great event - the annual ornithological conference, held at Tel Aviv University. This event grows every year - yesterday we had over 1000 guests! It was a nice but very busy day for me, had to smile to so many people and behave myself the whole day. But it was good to catch up with many good friends.
We had some superstar guests from overseas. Here is Marco Lambertini talking about his bird life:

And this is Thomas Krumenacker presenting his stunning images. One day I will photograph like him...

I was very proud of myself with the exhibition of the bird photography contest I had organized and produced:

Today I had the honour and pleasure to spend the morning with Ian Newton. I picked him up from Tel Aviv and we drove off to Ma'agan Michael. We had little time there, and the weather was quite British - cold, grey and windy, but we did quite OK I think. Ian had a good time for sure with four lifers (Ian - you owe me four pints next time we meet).
This Citrine Wagtail was very loyal to a small grassy patch which had tons of insects sheltering from the strong wind:

I totally screwed this image up - the focus stayed locked on the tail:

We had two male Siberian Stonechat. This one is a typical variegatus - note that at least half of the length of the rectrices is white:

Didn't get any images of the second bird but it was closer to armenicus, with very little white at the base of the rectrices - perhaps 1/4 of the feather.
Other good birds we had were four Pallas's Gulls (great views), one Yellow-legged and many Slender-billed Gulls (some were really pink - almost like a ross's - I wish...), many Water Pipits, Temminck's Stints, Sanderlings, Reed Bunting and lots of other stuff.

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