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Sandstorms

Posted: Sun Mar 11, 2012 5:26 am
by Lesser Spot Finder
This has been a quiet week, largely due to the fact that I have been unable to get out of the JOC (ops room). Monday started with a female Variable Wheatear flushed (not literally) at the Portaloos –effectively now a bird on my garden list. Tuesday and, in fact, most of the rest of the week saw sandstorms which limited Support Helicopter (SH) Movement and any chance of a bird passage. Subsequently that day I only saw a lone Laughing Dove over the JOC.

On Wednesday I found what I suspect was another Variable Wheatear but this bird had a whole black tail – any ideas? The remainder of the week was rather repetitive with Crested Larks and Tree Sparrows omni-present. A male Pied Bushchat brightened things up on Friday and a Swallow south on Saturday was the only bird of note.

As I type we are in the middle of another sandstorm with SH grounded and we were mortored last night; I remained in bed. The jury is out as to whether there was a false reading on the detection systems or whether there was in fact an explosion adjacent to the airfield. Either way it wasn’t enough to get me out of my scratcher.

Variable wheatear?

Posted: Sun Mar 11, 2012 1:46 pm
by Larus
Have you considered Blackstart?

It would, I think be a little further east than normal, seems the closest known breeding range is eastern Iraq.

Many of the illustrations show the Blackstart to be much more blue/grey but a google of some images shows this to be variable.

Just a thought!

Neil

Re: Variable wheatear?

Posted: Sun Mar 11, 2012 1:57 pm
by Lesser Spot Finder
Larus wrote:Have you considered Blackstart?

It would, I think be a little further east than normal, seems the closest known breeding range is eastern Iraq.

Many of the illustrations show the Blackstart to be much more blue/grey but a google of some images shows this to be variable.

Just a thought!

Neil
It's a Wheater (black and white) but the tail just doesn't fit. I suppose that's why it's called Variable.

Re: Variable wheatear

Posted: Sun Mar 11, 2012 3:00 pm
by Larus
My bad,

I assumed the mystery was a female. A male, as you say, would be nothing like blackstart.

Neil