Slept until 0930 and had a relaxing morning. A quick stop at the Eilat Ringing centre did not produce anything other than Marsh Sandpiper 4.Went to the Date Palm Plantation and ticked of the wintering female Crested Honey Buzzard. We flushed the bird twice before it flew off to Jordan. This seems to be the normal procedure with this bird so be sure to arrive early in the day. We met up with Rasmus Turin and Henrik Kisbye at the Ringing Centre and they informed us about two Asian Desert Warblers at KM33. A most wanted species for most of the group.
At KM33 we did not see the warblers but had fine views of Indian Silverbill 7 in the nearby date palm plantation. The silverbills can be quite difficult to find as they seem to disappear in palm trees but in the end we all had very good views.
Just south of Yotvata we saw several of the endangered Acacia Gazelle which is a subspecies of Mountain Gazelle only found in the southern part of Israel. At Yotvata we had a small lunch break at the visitor centre. The afternoon was spent birding the Northern Circular Field in Yotvata. Birds seen included Pallid Harrier 1 ♂ and Bimalculated lark 5 among the hundreds of Greater Short-toed Larks.
At dusk we had a successful encounter with the Licthenstein’s Sandgrouse at KM19. The birds (2♂♂+2♀♀) came in to drink at 1800, precisely. The evening was spent spotlighting at Yotvata but again without Egyptian Nightjar and Desert Eagle Owl. We did see Cape Hare 2, Lesser Egyptian Gerbil (easily caught by EDY) and Desert Hedgehog. Spent the night at Eilat.
|Desert Hedgehog at Yotvata|
|Acacia Gazelle which is a subspecies of Mountain Gazelle is only found in the southern part of Israel.|
|Bimalculated lark at Northern Circular Field, Yotvata|
|Lesser Egyptian Gerbil (easily caught by EDY)|