Thursday, December 31, 2009

Special review - my best birds of 2009

I am happy to present images of the best birds I encountered during 2009. It was a good year with many exciting stuff and even a couple of Israel ticks for me!

The year began well with this beautiful male Kurdish Wheatear that took up a territory at Wadi Mishmar:
Late in January I ringed two Asian Desert Warblers together with Yosef Kiat at Hameyshar - a ringing tick for me and great little birds!

This Steppe Grey Shrike was found in February in the Hula lake:

Well, this is not a national rarity but it's my bird - and such a beautiful one. Nubian Nightjars are critically endangered in Israel, and I like this image very much. I hope that 2010 will bring good news for the conservation of the Neot Hakikar salt marsh.

I spent much of March guiding the 2009 International Bird Migration Festival at Eilat. I was busy guiding so didn't have much time for photography, but still got in touch with some good birds. This Black Bush Robin showed not-too-well inside Yotvata Hai-Bar reserve:

There were several Caspian Plovers about, including this cooperative male at KM 20 saltpans:

This male Pied Wheatear was a nice find by Barak, near Tel Arad:

See you in the 2010 festival!
This Sabine's Gull was the fourth for Israel. I saw it several times during its two-month-long stay at Ma'agan Michael:
Shorebird migration picked up in August, and this Red-necked Phalarope at Ma'agan Michael was nice to see and photograph as always:

In late August I visited Nachlieli island off the N Med coast, where a pair of Bridled Terns attempted to breed for the second year. We found only one bird among the Common Terns:

This Rueppell's Warbler I ringed at Ashdod in early September was a good autumn bird:

I successfully twitched this 4th Green Warbler for Israel at Netiv Halamed-He in early October. It wasn't too challenging - it waited for me in a bag...

I had several Red-breasted Flycatchers during late September - early October, including this one at Elifaz sewage in the S Arava:

This 9th Pectoral Sandpiper for Israel showed well during it's long stay at Ma'agan Michael:

I was happy to add Pacific Golden Plover to my Ashdod list. This bird was found in early November on the beach:

December began with another bag-twitch, this time a Paddyfield Warbler which waited in the bag for us at Ma'agan Michael (tick!):

And the year ended with another Israeli tick, this time two Red-throated Divers that showed well at Acre:
Today I am working from home. In the past such days ended up in a twitch several times, so who knows what happens today... But if nothing happens, this is the end of 2009 birding for me. All the very best wishes for 2010 - and many good birds for everyone!


  1. Beacuse of you (and the birds), I'm Becoming a fan!!!
    Gilad Mor

  2. Congratulations for so beautiful pictures!