Tuesday, 31 March 2009
This is where all the reintroductions happen. A project that has been guided by the Italians (especially a chap called Gianlucca Sierra). This shows how positive conservation can be. Habitat looks great and shed loads of larks and pipits about. In turn these attracted raptors including two Imperial and one Great Spotted Eagle. Stars bird wise though must have been the 5 Pallid Harriers that were continually hawking over the plains giving stunning views. Another must visit site if in Syria.
A cracking red spotted male Bluethroat followed us around by the gate at the Talila reserve following a fall of migrants (from a rain shower). PHAW!!!
Also Rock and Blue Rock Thrush, both Black eared, Pied and Cyprus Pied Wheatear, Wrynecks, Desert Finch, Tree Pipit, Menetries and Sedge Warbler, Tawny pipit, Eastern Redstart and hundreds of chiffchaffs caught up in the fall. Fantastic birding.
One hundred and fifty Arabian Oryx have also been reintroduced onto the reserve at Talila near Palmyra, along with now 600 Sand Gazelle. Cool to watch them wander about from the jeep. Very safari like. The difference in grazing each side of the fence was amazing. The sheep have grazed the steppe to buggery, but the Oryx graze differently and you get good flushes of wildflowers etc. One to be learned in certain parts of Scotland.