MEGA: Egyptian Nightjar, new for Georgia
Volunteers from the BRC team visited Chorokhi Delta on their day off today and found an EGYPTIAN Nightjar on the beach. The bird was flushed by a shepherd dog and flew around observers, giving very close views. What a nice bird for the 10th anniversary of the BRC! And what a nice follow-up after the observation of a male Black-crowned Sparrow Lark in 2015 at the same place. Congrats to Jonas Schärer, Xu Shi and Jaime Escobar Toledo for this stunning bird...! This represents the first observation for Georgia, a new bird species on the country list!
picture of Egyptian Nightjar on the coastal strip at Chorokhi Delta, Gonio, near Batumi 26/08/2017 © Jonas Schärer
The next day(27/08/2017), another team visited the Delta today to give a try to the nightjar. The birding day was very rich, with high diversity and good birds. First, the Egyptian Nightjar was at the same place as yesterday, still sitting in the beach pebbles! We could get better pictures of the bird and enjoy close views of this more than unexpected species.
pictures of Egyptian Nightjar the next day, same place (Chorokhi Delta, Gonio, near Batumi) 27/08/2017 © Simon Cavailles
Also the Delta was literally filled with shrikes, wheatears and wagtails. Hundreds of them all over the place. Visiting this place before hunters invade the Delta is really enjoyable, it reveals the full birding potential. Some of the good species we could see were Booted Warbler (1), Rosy Starling (2), Purple Swamphen (2), Little Crake (4-8 individuals), Caspian Tern (1) and more. On the way back an Eastern Olivaceous Warbler in Batumi center was a nice cherry on top of the cake.
from left to right: Booted Warbler © Simon Cavailles; Glossy Ibis © Triin Kaasiku; Grey-headed Swamphen © Simon Cavailles
Let's hope we can get regular observators in Chorokhi Delta this season, there would be more surprises to come! We encourage everyone to register their observations on batumiraptorcount.observation.org. By doing so, we keep a fully documented list of this important area, which is of high value when discussing the future of the site.