Tomorrow I'm off to the Eilat Festival. This fantastic event, taking place this year for the 6th time, is one of my personal highlights of the birding year. I always work very hard, guiding the whole week, but I always have a great time. For me, nothing gets better than eilat in spring, and this year seems to be even better than normal; migration is massive, with numbers of common migrants reaching the levels of the good old days (at least according to Hadoram). I can't wait to get down there tomorrow.
Every year we get to find or see very good birds. Some are regular rarities, and sometimes we have real megas. But also the good, regular migrants offer lots of taste and colour to birding there.
This year we will be honoured to host some leading birders and writers, including Martin Garner and Laura Kammermeier. It will be great to meet them and bird with them, and I am sure they will have exciting material posted on their blogs during the week.
I hope I will have enough time and energy to write daily updates during the festival. Jonathan will be updating the IOC Facebook page daily, so even if you're not with us in Eilat, you can feel the spirit during the week.
Black Bush Robin, 2008 festival
Caspian Plover, 2009 festival
Lesser Sand-plover, 2010 festival (this bird has not been accepted YET by the IRDC...)
Pied Wheatear, 2010 festival
Siberian Buff-bellied Pipit, 2011 festival
Common, sexy migrants:
Little Crake, 2011 festival
Pallid Harrier, 2011 festival
Exciting local stuff:
Sinai Rosefinch, 2009 festival
Striated Heron, 2011 festival
And of course my babies: