Friday, November 18, 2016

Birding Tehran, February 2016

Lying in the foothills of Tochal mountains, Tehran is providing an opportunity to see montane birds hassle-free. Also Tochal provides a wintering habitat for some interesting migrants such as Black-throated Thrush and Eversmann's Redstart.
There are several valleys that are good for birding; my favourite is Golab Darreh.

in winter Wallcreepers move to lower levels and can be seen easily 


Black-throated Thrush
every winter they can be seen in Tehran's Parks and in Tochal valleys

Another individual: a first-winter male probably? 
first winter Black-throated Thrush

undertail coverts of first winter Black-throated Thrush

Red Fox

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Shahrud, 1 July 2016

Shahrud lies on the ancient Silk Road with rich culture and rich in nature; surrounded by protected areas, desert, high mountains and not far from Hyrcanian forests.
My parents lives there and in every visit I have a opportunity to birding in one of Shahrud's parks (Abshar Park) which located at the foothills of shahrud's northern heights.
Here is a summary of my birding in there this summer:

It seems a pair of Shikra breeding in the park. However I couldn't locate the nest.

female Shikra

female Accipiter badius

Golden Oriole

I'm not sure about the id of this juv Wheatear. maybe Pied?
Alborz is a hybrid zone for Pied and Black-eared Wheatears

The last Western Siberian Crane of Iran

On 9 November, the only Siberian Crane of Iran came back to it's wintering grounds for ninth consecutive year.
Photo courtesy: Abdollah Abedpoor

It is wintering in Mazandaran province, north of Iran. Most of the time inside notorious "Damgahs" of Fereydunkenar. 

Monday, November 14, 2016

First Brown Shrike of Iran

   On 26 September 2016, Reza Sarkheil saw this beauty in Kish island, south of Iran.
   However Iran bird records committee has considered it as "doubtful record".

Brown Shrike?!

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Second record of Amur Falcon for Iran

On October 28, 2016, Shobeir Fakourian recorded the second Amur Falcon (Falco amurensis) for Iran in Bushehr province, south of Iran.

Amur Falcon

3 days later Shobeir recorded another Amur Falcon 7 km away from the first one; probably same bird:

Amur Falcon

Amur Falcon

Amur Falcon

Friday, November 11, 2016

Abr Forest, 30 June 2016

Abr Forest is one of my favorite places in Iran. Every year I guide at least one hiking tour in there. Located in north-east of Iran, is an ecotone zone between Hyrcanian forests and semi-desert plains of Shahrud.
On June 30 we went there for a one day birding and hiking.

There were 5 juvenile Lesser Grey Shrikes on a Apricot tree begging for food from parents.

Lesser Grey Shrike (Lanius minor)

Lesser Grey Shrike
There were also Linnets, Chaffinches, Tree and House Sparrows

In the heights we saw Rock Thrush, Siberian Stonechat, Red Fronted Serin and ...

Female Siberian Stonechat on a Juniperus communis