uaetripf

United Arab Emirates
and Sultanate of Oman

Trip Report
25 March to 15 April 2002

Participants

Friedrich Mueller (Frankfurt a.M.), Johannes Vermehren

(Freiburg), Falk Wicker (Rostock)

1. Itinerary
25.-28.03. Dubai area, Gulf coast – Northern Emirates, Al Wathba camel racetrack, Hatta road, Al Ain area, UAE east coast
border crossing at Hatmat Malahat border post on evening of 28.03.
29.-30.03. Al Batinah Coast (Oman), Capital Area (Muscat)
31.03.-01.04. Southeast Coast Oman, Central Desert
02.-07.04. Salalah area
08.04. Al Batinah Coast
border crossing at Hatmat Malahat border post on evening of 08.04.
09.-15.04. East Coast (UAE), Dubai, Abu Dhabi area, Ras al Khaimah area, East Coast, Dubai

2. Introduction
This was our first birding trip to the region. Therefore our main intention was to see as many resident and migrant bird species as possible which can not (or only with difficulty) be found further west.
Three weeks is not quite an appropriate amount of time to fully explore both countries. Yet time and money was as usual the restricting factor. We hope You will find this report both interesting and useful. If there are any questions please feel free to contact us: jvermehren@gmx.de.

3. Useful information

Flight
Two of us took a Kuwait Airways flight for about € 490,- from Frankfurt via Kuwait City to Dubai. This flight is not exactly recommended as our outward flight had a massive delay and on our day of return we were told that our tickets had been cancelled because we had not confirmed the flight. This we thought to be rather unusual for normal schedule flights. Besides we had no such information on our tickets. Complains did not help and we had to stay another two days in Dubai.
The other flight was a Turkish Airlines flight via Istanbul, beeing even cheaper but including a 6 hour stop at Istanbul Airport.

Car hire
We hired our car via internet from Holiday Cars (Price: € 760 for 20 days). We fetched the car at Dubai International Airport, the counter is open 24 hours per day. It was a Nissan Sunny with air-con. Notice: An international driving permit is required for the Sultanate of Oman. Some birding sites could not be visited as our car was not a 4WD. Yet driving the car even on rough tracks never was a serious problem. To cross the border into Oman requires a seperate “Oman Insurance” which can only be bought by weeks. As we wanted to stay in Oman for about 10 days, we had to pay the overblown amount of € 165 for two weeks.
There are plenty of petrol stations throughout both countries. Petrol is very cheap compared to european standards, costing between RO 3-4 in Oman and Dir 30-40 in the UAE per tank (~ € 10,-).
It is almost impossible to go birdwatching without a car, as most of the birding sites are too remote to be sufficently frequented by public transport.

Roads
Roads are in very good condition throughout the region. Most of the main roads are high-quality highways. In the UAE you can get almost anywhere on blacktop roads. In Oman there are well paved motorways throughout the “Capital Region” and along the Al Batinah coast. Even the long road from Muscat to Salalah (distance: 1040 km) is paved and can thus be worked by saloon car. Yet there are still some regions in the far Northeast, along the East Coast (including Masirah Island) and even in the Salalah area where a 4WD is absolutely essential.

Money
Exchanging money is nowhere a problem. All major cities including Salalah have plenty of exchange offices as well as ATM’s at major banks.
At the time of visit, exchange rates were: 3,20 Dirhams for 1 Euro in the UAE and 0,220 (1 RO = 1000! Baizas) Riyal for 1 Euro in Oman.

Visas
No visas are required for EU citizens in the UAE. To visit the Sultanate of Oman you need to get a visa, which is best obtained at the embassy in your home country. We bought our 3 weeks single entry visa at the Oman Consulate in Frankfurt about 5 weeks in advance (Costs: € 25).

Accomodation
Hotel standards are very high in both countries. Not surprisingly, cheap accomodation is very hard if not impossible to find. Having only a very tight budget, we decided to camp during our whole stay. There was never a problem finding a camp site. Sleeping out in the tent also gave us the opportunity to locate calling owls at night and to be at the good birding sites very early in the morning.

Food
There are many western-style supermarkets in the major cities and small “Food Stuff” stores in remoter areas. Thus plenty of opportunity to buy food. Particularly good were the relatively cheap sandwiches at UAE’s petrol stations, “shwarmas” at Omani street restaurants and the small tasty bananas at fruit stands in Salalah.

Weather
It was pretty hot on most days with temperatures rising well above 30° C. Humidity in coastal areas can be stifling. I n the desert it was even hotter but quite chilly at night. Sunrise was at about 6.00 a.m. and sunset at 6.30 p.m. It is important to check tides before visiting coastal mudflats (such as Khor al Beidah) in the UAE.

Literature
• C. Richardson & S. Aspinall: The Shell Birdwatching Guide to the UAE, Dubai 1998
• H. & J. Eriksen, P. & D. Sargeant: Birdwatching guide to Oman, Muscat 2001

Both birdwatching guides are absolutely essential! Both are pretty new and therefore up to date and contain a great amount of useful information as well as checklists, photographs and detailed maps. Five star rating for both of them! For up to date information on UAE birding sites please contact Colin Richardson via email, he is very helpful! You can also contact Hanne and Jens Eriksen via email for more information on birdwatching in Oman. Email-addresses to be found on the internet pages (s.b.). Both books can be bought at local bookshops. But you can also obtain the “Shell Guide” via www.wildlifebooks.com and the “Oman Guide” via www.nhbs.com.

• R.F. Porter et al.: Field Guide to the Birds of the Middle East, London 1996
• L. Svensson et al.: Der neue Kosmos Vogelführer, Stuttgart 1999
• A. Harris et al.: The Macmillan Birder’s Guide to European and Middle Eastern Birds, London 1996
• Lonely Planet Guide: Oman and the UAE, Hawthorn 2000
• Reise Know How: Oman, Hohenthann 1999
• Hildebrand’s Road Map: UAE/Oman, Scale: 1:1500 000 – not very useful, as many roads had allready been changed and others didn’t appear at all. Yet using the birdwatching guides we had no difficulties finding any of the sites.

Internet Resources
Each country has an absolutely recommended site on birdwatching. For the UAE it is the weekly updated “Twitcher’s Guide” on the website of the Ministry of Information: www.uaeinteract.com which provides plenty information on recent sightings. For Oman it is www.birdsoman.com, which also provides recent sightings as well as some stunning photographs. The homepage of the Ornithological Society of the Middle East (OSME) offers some useful trip reports: www.osme.org.

Bird Records Committees
• Emirates Bird Records Committee, P.O. Box 50394, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Fax: +9714 472276
• Oman Bird Records Committee, P. O. Box 246, Muscat 113, Sultanate of Oman

4. Birdlist

This list only contains species which are not or less familiar with middle-european birdwatchers. A copy of the full list can be sent via email on request. Total number of species seen: 241.
All birding sites mentioned are well described in the two guides. Therefore we don’t specify where exactly they are and how they are reached.

Jouanin’s Petrel (Bulweria fallax) – Jouaninsturmvogel
2 off Ras Mirbat (O) on 05.04.

Persian Shearwater (Puffinus persicus) – Persischer Sturmtaucher
30+ off Ras Mirbat on 05.04.
5 off Kalba Beach (UAE) on 12.04.

Pale-footed Shearwater (Puffinus carneipes) – Blaßfuß-Sturmtaucher
3 off Ras Mirbat on 05.04.

Sooty Shearwater (Puffinus griseus) – Dunkler Sturmtaucher
1 at beach southeast of Ayn Hamran (O) on 02.04.
1 at Kalba Beach on 12.04.

Red-billed Tropicbird (Phaeton aethereus) – Rotschnabel-Tropikvogel
15+ at cliffs (nesting site) southeast of Ayn Hamran on 03.04.

Masked Booby (Sula dactylatra) – Maskentölpel
3 off Al Mughsail (O) on 01.04.
3 at beach southeast of Ayn Hamran on 02.04.
6 off Ras Mirbat on 05.04.

Brown Booby (Sula leucogaster) – Weißbauchtölpel
3 at beach southeast of Ayn Hamran on 02.04.
1 at cliffs southeast of Ayn Hamran on 03.04.
1 off Al Mughsail on 07.04.

Socotra Cormorant (Phalacrocorax nigrogularis) – Sokotrascharbe
several seen in both countries

Striated Heron (Butorides striatus) – Mangrovereiher
many seen in both countries, mainly in parks and mangroves

Western Reef Heron (Egretta gularis) – Küstenreiher
many seen of both dark and white phase in both countries, maximum of 100+ at Barr al Hikman on 31.03.

Intermediate Egret (Egretta intermedia) – Mittelreiher
1 at Salalah Nature Reserve (O) on 02.04.
2 at East Khawr (O) on 02.04.
3 at Khawr Rawri (O) on 04.04.
1 at East Khawr on 05.04.

Sacred Ibis (Threskiornis aethiopicus) – Heiliger Ibis
1 at Qurm Park (O) on 29.03.

Cotton Teal (Nettapus coromandelianus) – Koromandel-Zwergente
1 at Al Mughsail on 01.04., still present on 07.04.
7 ar Khawr Sawli on 02.04., still present on 06.04.
2 at Khawr Rawri on 04.04.

Egyptian Vulture (Neophron percnopterus) – Schmutzgeier
10+ at Sunub Waste Disposal (O) on 30.04.
several other sightings in Oman deserts

Griffon Vulture (Gyps fulvus) – Gänsegeier
1 in Dhofar Mountains (O) on 01.04.

Lappet-faced Vulture (Torgos tracheliotos) – Ohrengeier
2 at Sunub Waste Disposal on 30.04.

Pallid Harrier (Circus macrourus) – Steppenweihe
several seen in both countries, mainly over farmlands and Camel racetrack in UAE

Shikra (Accipiter badius) – Schikrasperber
1 at Ayn Sahnawt (O) on 05.04.

Greater Spotted Eagle (Aquila clanga) - Schelladler
several seen in both countries, most at farmlands around Salalah (O)

Steppe Eagle (Aquila nipalensis) – Steppenadler
3 at Sunub Waste Disposal on 30.04.

Imperial Eagle (Aquila heliaca) – Kaiseradler
1 immat. at Sahnawt Farm (O) on 06.04.

Golden Eagle (Aquila chrysaetos) – Steinadler
1 in Dhofar Mountains on 01.04.

Verreaux’s Eagle (Aquila verreauxii) – Kaffernadler
a pair at Ayn Hamran (O) on 02.04.

Bonelli’s Eagle (Hieraaetus fasciatus) – Habichtsadler
2 at Ayn Hamran on 02.04.
2 at Wadi Hanna (O) on 03.04.
1 at cliff southeast of Ayn Hamran on 03.04.

Lesser Kestrel (Falco naumanni) – Rötelfalke
several individuals at various places in UAE (less than 5 records)

Grey Francolin (Francolinus pondicerianus) – Wachtelfrankolin
fairly common in urban areas such as Mushrif National Park (UAE)

Arabian Partridge (Alectoris melanocephala) – Schwarzkopf-Steinhuhn
6+ in Dhofar Mountains on 01.04.
3 at Ayn Hamran on 02.04.
4 at Ayn Sahnawt on 05.04.

Sand Partridge (Ammoperdix heyi) – Arabisches Wüstenhuhn
1 at Jebel Hafeet on 27.03.

Crab Plover (Dromas ardeola) – Reiherläufer
10+ at Khor al Beidah (UAE) on 28.03.
2 at beach southeast of Ayn Hamran on 02.04.

Collared Pratincole (Glareola pratincola) – Rotflügel-Brachschwalbe
1 at Al Wathba Camel racetrack (UAE) on 11.04.

Lesser Sand Plover (Charadrius mongolus) – Mongolenregenpfeifer
many seen in both countries, most at Khor al Beidah (UAE)

Greater Sandplover (Charadrius leschenaultii) – Wüstenregenpfeifer
some at Khor al Beidah and Barr al Hikman

Pacific Golden Plover (Pluvialis fulva) – Pazifischer Goldregenpfeifer
4 at Khor al Beidah on 26.03.
16 at Qurm Park (O) on 29.03.
48 at Al Wathba Camel racetrack on 10.04.

Red-wattled Plover (Hoplopterus indicus) – Rotlappenkiebitz
many seen at various places, not in south Oman

Sociable Plover (Chettusia gregaria) – Steppenkiebitz
1 at Al Wathba Camel racetrack on 10.04.

Great Knot (Calidris tenuirostris) – Großer Knutt
30+ at Barr al Hikman on 31.03.

Broad-billed Sandpiper (Limicola falcinellus) – Sumpfläufer
8+ at Khor Dubai (UAE) on 26.03.

Pintail Snipe (Gallinago stenura) – Spießbekassine
2 at Emirates golf course (UAE) on 26.03.
1 at Ayn Hamran on 02.04.

Marsh Sandpiper (Tringa stagnatilis) – Teichwasserläufer
several seen in wetlands throughout the region

Terek Sandpiper (Xenus cinereus) – Terekwasserläufer
many seen with maximum numbers at Khor al Beidah and Liwa (O)

Arctic Skua (Stercorarius parasiticus) – Schmarotzerraubmöwe
several individuals off various coasts, with a maximum of 6 at Kalba beach on 12.04.

Sooty Gull (Larus hemprichii) – Hemprichmöwe
huge flocks at UAE’s east coast and Oman coasts

Slender-billed Gull (Larus genei) – Dünnschnabelmöwe
abundant in coastal areas

Siberian Gull (Larus heuglini) – Tundramöwe
several seen at UAE’s east coast and along Oman coasts among Baltic and Pontic Gulls

Swift Tern (Sterna bergii) – Eilseeschwalbe
some at UAE’s east coast, many off south coast Oman with maximum of 150+ at Ras as Sawadi (north O) on 08.04.

Lesser Crested Tern (Sterna bengalensis) – Rüppelseeschwalbe
abundant in coastal areas

White-cheeked Tern (Sterna repressa) – Weißwangenseeschwalbe
many off south coast Oman and at Kalba beach on 10.04.

Saunders’s Tern (Sterna saundersi) – Orientseeschwalbe
common in coastal areas

Lichtenstein’s Sandgrouse (Pterocles lichtensteinii) – Wellenflughuhn
30+ coming to drink at dusk at Al Ansab Lagoons (O) on 30.04.
1 Wadi Ashawq (O) on 04.04.

Crowned Sandgrouse (Pterocles coronatus) – Kronenflughuhn
50+ coming to drink at Muntasar (O) on 01.04.

Spotted Sandgrouse (Pterocles senegallus) – Tropfenflughuhn
100+ coming to drink at Muntasar on 01.04.

Chestnut-bellied Sandgrouse (Pterocles exustus) – Braunbauchflughuhn
50+ coming to drink at Al Ansab Lagoons on 30.04.
some at Muntasar on 01.04.
15 at Al Wathba Camel racetrack on 11.04.
4 at Emirates Golf Course on 13.04.

Laughing Dove (Streptopelia senegalensis) – Palmtaube
very common breeding resident over much of the region

Namaqua Dove (Oena capensis) – Kaptäubchen
1 male at Al Wathba Camel racetrack on 27.03.

Bruce’s Green Pigeon (Treron waalia) – Waaliataube
6+ at Ayn Hamran on 02.04.
8 at Wadi Hanna on 03.04.

Ring-necked Parakeet (Psittacula krameri) – Halsbandsittich
common resident in urban areas

Alexandrine Parakeet (Psittacula eupatria) – Alexandersittich
4 at Al Mamzar Park (UAE) on 15.04.

Striated Scops Owl (Otus brucei) – Streifenohreule
2 at Mushrif National Park (UAE) on 25.03.
4 at Mushrif National Park on 09.04.

African Scops Owl (Otus senegalensis) – Senegaleule
at least 3 calling at night at Shir-road (O) on 04.04.

Spotted Eagle Owl (Bubo africanus) – Fleckenuhu
1 heard calling and seen at Ayn Sahnawt on 05.04.

Pallid Swift (Apus pallidus) – Fahlsegler
common migrant breeder over much of the region

White-collared Kingfisher (Halcyon chloris, endemic ssp. kalbaensis) – Halsbandliest
2 at Khor Kalba (UAE) on 28.04.
2 at Liwa (O) on 08.04.

Little-green Bee-eater (Merops orientalis) – Smaragdspint
common breeding resident in both countries

Blue-cheeked Bee-eater (Merops superciliosus) – Blauwangenspint
about 300 gathering at dusk over Liwa mangroves on 08.04.

Indian Roller (Coracias benghalensis) – Hinduracke
common resident in UAE and northeast Oman

Singing Bush Lark (Mirafra cantillans) – Buschlerche
common migrant breeder to farmland around Salalah

Black-crowned Finch Lark (Eremopterix nigriceps) – Weißstirnlerche
seen in both countries, most numerous at Al Wathba Camel racetrack

Desert Lark (Ammomanes deserti) – Steinlerche
seen at Jebel Hafeet on 27.03. and at various places throughout Oman

Hoopoe Lark (Alaemon alaudipes) – Wüstenläuferlerche
seen in both countries, most reliable spot: Al Wathba Camel racetrack, where it breeds

Short-toed Lark (Calandrella brachydactyla) – Kurzzehenlerche
several seen at various places, but nowhere common

Lesser Short-toed Lark (Calandrella rufescens) – Stummellerche
also recorded at various places, more common than Short-toed Lark

African Rock Martin* (Ptyonoprogne fuligula) – Steinschwalbe
common breeding resident of mountain areas in both countries

Richard’s Pipit (Anthus richardi) – Spornpieper
12 at Al Wathba Camel racetrack on 27.03.
1 at Al Wathba Camel racetrack on 10.04.

Tawny Pipit (Anthus campestris) – Brachpieper
singles seen in both countries

Long-billed Pipit (Anthus similis) – Langschnabelpieper
3 at Wadi Masafi (UAE) on 12.04.

Red-throated Pipit (Anthus cervinus) – Rotkehlpieper
only recorded in UAE with maximum of 100+ birds at Al Wathba Camel racetrack on 10.04.

Blyth’s Pipit (Anthus godlewskii) – Steppenpieper
3-4 at Fujairah National Dairy Farm (UAE) on 28.03.

Citrine Wagtail (Motacilla citreola) – Zitronenstelze
only 1 male seen at Fujairah National Dairy Farm on 28.03.

White-cheeked Bulbul (Pycnonotus leucogenys) – Weißohrbülbül
common breeding resident in UAE, some also found at Qurm Park (O)

Yellow-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus xanthopygos) – Gelbsteißbülbül
common breeding resident in both Oman and UAE

Red-whiskered Bulbul (Pycnonotus jocosus) – Rotohrbülbül
up to 5 birds seen at Mushrif Palace Gardens (UAE) on 10.04.

Red-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus cafer) – Rußbülbül
common in urban areas, UAE

Grey Hypocolius (Hypocolius ampelinus) – Seidenwürger
up to 40 birds seen at Ghantoot (UAE) on 25.03.

Rufous Bush Robin (Cercotrichas galactotes) – Heckensänger
recorded at various places, only in April

White-throated Robin (Irania gutturalis) – Weißkehlsänger
2 at Al Mamzar Park on 15.04.

“Ehrenberg’s Redstart” (Phoenicurus p. samamisicus) – Östl. Gartenrotschwanz
1 at Al Mamazar Park on 15.04.

Blackstart (Cercomela melanura) – Schwarzschwanz
only recorded in south Oman, where quite common

Isabelline Wheatear (Oenanthe isabellina) – Isabellsteinschmätzer
common passage migrant

Pied Wheatear (Oenanthe pleschanka) – Nonnensteinschmätzer
very common passage migrant

Desert Wheatear (Oenanthe deserti) – Wüstensteinschmätzer
common passage migrant

South Arabian Wheatear (Oenanthe lugentoides) – Südarabien-Steinschmätzer
at least 5 birds seen at Tawi Atayr on 04.04.

Hooded Wheatear (Oenanthe monacha) – Kappensteinschmätzer
1 male in Dhofar Mountains on 01.04.
1 female at Tawi Atayr

Hume’s Wheatear (Oenanthe alboniger) – Schwarzkopf-Steinschmätzer
1 at Jebel Hafeet on 27.03.
1 at Sunub Waste Disposal on 30.03.

Rock Thrush (Monticola saxatilis) – Steinrötel
1 male at Wadi Masafi on 09.04.
1 male at Hamraniyah Fields (UAE) on 11.04.

Graceful Prinia (Prinia gracilis) – Streifenprinie
common breeding resident

Scrub Warbler (Scotocerca inquieta) – Wüstenprinie
2 at Wadi Masafi on 28.03.
2 at Wadi Masafi on 08.04.

Clamorous Reed Warbler (Acrocephalus stentoreus) – Stentorrohrsänger
recorded in both countries, mainly in coastal mongroves, breeding pair at Khawr Rawri

Olivaceous Warbler (Hippolais pallida) – Blaßspötter
singles seen in both Oman and UAE

Sykes’s Warbler (Hippolais rama) – Steppenspötter
some individuals of the breeding population seen at Liwa mangroves on 08.04.

Upcher’s Warbler (Hippolais languida) – Dornspötter
several birds seen at various places, most at Wadi Masafi

Icterine Warbler (Hippolais icterina) – Gelbspötter
1 at Wadi Rabkut (O) on 07.04.

Arabian Warbler (Sylvia leucomelaena) – Akaziengrasmücke
2-3 birds seen at Ayn Hamran on two occasions

Desert Lesser Whitethroat (Sylvia curruca minula) – Klappergrasmücke
1 at Wadi Masafi on 28.03.

White-breasted White-eye (Zosterops abyssinica) – Somali-Brillenvogel
common breeding resident in wooded areas in south Oman

African Paradise Flycatcher (Terpsiphone viridis) – Graubrust-Paradiesschnäpper
many birds seen at springs in Dhofar mountains, most at Ayn Hamran

Arabian Babbler (Turdoides squamiceps) – Graudrossling
common breeding resident over much of the region, most often in dry wadis

Purple Sunbird (Nectarinia asiatica) – Purpurnektarvogel
common in both UAE and north Oman

Shining Sunbird (Nectarinia habessinica) – Glanznektarvogel
5+ at Ayn Hamran on 03.04.
2 at Wadi Hanna on 03.04.

Palestine Sunbird (Nectarinia osea) – Jerichonektarvogel
1 at Ayn Hamran on 03.04.
4+ at Ayn Sahnawt on 05.04.

Black-crowned Tchagra (Tchagra senegala) – Senegaltschagra
2 at Ayn Hamran on 03.04.

Isabelline Shrike (Lanius isabellinus) – Isabellwürger
very common passage migrant, both subspecies isabellinus (“Daurian Shrike”) and phoenicuroides (“Turkestan Shrike”) were seen

Southern Grey Shrike (Lanius meridonalis) – Südlicher Raubwürger
common breeding resident, ssp. pallidirostris (“Steppe Grey Shrike”) was also recorded

Masked Shrike (Lanius nubicus) – Maskenwürger
rather uncommon passage migrant (less than 5 records), not seen in Oman

House Crow (Corvus splendens) – Glanzkrähe
common and widespread but not seen in south Oman

Brown-necked Raven (Corvus ruficollis) – Wüstenrabe
common and widespread breeding resident

Fan-tailed Raven (Corvus rhipidurus) – Borstenrabe
many birds seen in Dhofar Mountains (O)

Tristram’s Grackle (Onychognathus tristramii) – Tristramstar
common breeding resident in south Oman, many nesting birds seen at Tawi Atayr sinkhole on 04.04.

Rose-coloured Starling (Sturnus roseus) – Rosenstar
40+ at Hamraniyah fields (UAE) on 11.04.
12 at Hamraniyah fields on 12.04.

Pied Mynah (Sturnus contra) – Elsterstar
recorded at Zabeel fishponds (UAE) and Al Mamzar park

Bank Mynah (Acridotheres ginginianus) – Ufermaina
20+ at Hamraniyah fields on 11.04.

Common Mynah (Acridotheres tristis) – Hirtenmaina
very common breeding resident in urban areas in both UAE and north Oman

Spanish Sparrow (Passer hispaniolensis) – Weidensperling
10+ at Hamraniyah fields on 12.04.

Yellow-throated Sparrow (Petronia xanthocollis) – Gelbkehlsperling
1 at Hamraniyah fields on 25.03.
2 at Mushrif National Park on 09.04.

Rueppell’s Weaver (Ploceus galbula) – Pirolweber
very common resident breeder to scrubs and woodlands in south Oman

Golden-backed Weaver (Ploceus jacksoni) – Jacksonweber
introduced species, recorded only at Zabeel fishponds

Indian Silverbill (Euodice malabarica) – Indisches Silberschnäbelchen
common and widespread breeding resident in UAE

African Silverbill (Euodice cantans) – Afrikanisches Silberschnäbelchen
common breeding resident in south Oman

Yemen Serin (Serinus menachensis) – Jemengirlitz
4 at Tawi Atayr (only known breeding site in Oman) on 04.04.

House Bunting (Emberiza striolata) – Hausammer
only recorded in Dhofar Mountains

African Rock Bunting (Emberiza tahapisi) – Bergammer
very common breeding resident in Dhofar mountains

Cinereous Bunting (Emberiza cineracea) – Türkenammer
1 at Al Wathba Camel racetrack on 10.04.
1 at same place (probably same bird) on 11.04.

Ortolan Bunting (Emberiza hortulana) – Ortolan
5+ at Al Wathba Camel racetrack on 10.04.

Red-headed Bunting (Emberiza bruniceps) – Braunkopfammer
1 female at Hamraniyah fields on 12.04.

Black-headed Bunting (Emberiza melanocephala) – Kappenammer
6 at Hamraniyah fields on 12.04.
1 at Al Mamzar Park on 15.04.

* the local form “Pale Crag Martin” (Hirundo obsoleta) – Wüstenschwalbe is now also recognised as a seperate species.

5. Other animals
Green Turtle (Chelonia mydas) – Suppenschildkröte
several seen off Ras Mirbat (O) and Al Mughsail (O)

Dorcas Gazelle (Gazella gazella) – Dorcas-Gazelle
at least 5 were seen at Ad Duqm-Hayma road (O) on 31.03.

Rueppell’s Fox (Vulpes rueppelli) – Sandfuchs
several seen along Muscat-Salalah road at night

Common Dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) – Großer Tümmler
common at south coast Oman

Chinese Dolphin (Sousa chinensis) – Chinesischer Weißdelphin
some seen off Al Mughsail on 01.04.

Rock Hyrax (Procavia syriaca) – Klippschliefer
2 at Ayn Sahnawt on 05.04