Monday, 19 January 2015

Israel VII - flycatchers

We stayed at Kibbutz Lotan in the desert north of Eilat and in the old days this was famed as an oasis that attracted large numbers of birds. With the continued "greening" of the desert through irrigation schemes plus the fact that spring 2014 was a very wet spring which caused the desert to bloom we experienced very few migrant birds in the kibbutz grounds.

Two very smart birds though were singles each of male Semi-collared Flycatcher (balkanfluesnapper) and Collard Flycatcher (halsbåndfluesnapper). Both were 2cy males so not as smart as they could be. We did have a very smart adult male Collared Fly though in Eilat.

Semi-collared Flycatcher
here there is little to distinguish this bird from a Pied Flycatcher (svarthvit fluesnapper). Note the brown wash to the primaries indicating a young (2cy) male

this show the extent of the collar which is greater than on a Pied but still not complete as on a Collared. Note also a lot of white in the outer tail feathers
this photo shows the white tips to the median covets which is a characteristic feature but not always easy to see

the white tips to the median coverts again visible

overexposed in bright sunlight it looks like a different bird

here we can see that the white tips to the median coverts are quite broad and there is also a fairly broad white basis to the inner primaries

Collard Flycatcher

this bird was at the Birding Centre in Eilat and is an adult make. Note the full collar, the conspicuous white rump and the very broad white basis to the primaries

same bird as above, note the large white patch above the bill

This bird was a Lotan and the thin white basis to the primaries, brown primaries and indistinct white rump (obscured by an out of focus leaf) show this to be a 2cy

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