Aksu-Jabagly Nature Reserve,

Kazakhstan May 11 Ц June 7 2008

By Sander Bot



Common Quail Coturnix coturnix coturnix

May 12, 19: 2 and 5 birds near Dzhabagly respectively. One bird of the 12th flushed from a field, my first sighting ever after hearing 100s of birds.


Common Pheasant Phasianus colchicus mongolicus

Heard daily on the mountain slopes near Dzhabagly. However, hard to see, the only sightings were on May 24 and June 5: very light buffish wings obvious, broad white collar patches at sides of neck.


Black Stork Ciconia nigra

May 13: 1 adult circling above the mountains near Dzhabagly.


Lammergeier Gypaetus barbatus aureus

May 25, June 2: immature above the mountains near Dzhabagly.

May 29: adult above the mountains near Dzhabagly.


Egyptian Vulture Neophron percnopterus

June 6: 1 adult near the mountains at Dzhabagly. Happy to see this species just a few days before we left Dzhabagly, now we have seen 5 speciesа


Eurasian Griffon Vulture Gyps fulvus fulvus

Seen nearly daily in small numbers in the mountains near Dzhabagly. Maximum of 16 on May 28.


Himalayan Griffon Vulture Gyps himalayensis

May 25, 27, 28: 1 adult in the mountains near Dzhabagly.


Eurasian Black Vulture Aegypius monachus

Seen nearly daily in small numbers in the mountains near Dzhabagly. Maximum of 5 on May 14.


Eurasian Sparrowhawk Accipiter nisus

May 13, 24: female type near Dzhabagly.

June 2: adult male calling in forest patch near Dzhabagly.


Long-legged Buzzard Buteo rufinus rufinus

Seen nearly daily near Dzhabagly, usually 1 bird. On May 12 a dark brown morph was seen and on May 25 a bird caught a Rose-coloured Starling.


Booted Eagle Aquila pennata

A pair, both dark morph, was often seen in and around a patch of forest near Dzhabagly, suggesting breeding there.

June 6: 1 light morph near Dzhabagly.


Golden Eagle Aquila chrysaetos canadensis

May 24, June 1: adult in the mountains near Dzhabagly.


Common Kestrel Falco tinnunculus tinnunculus

Common around Dzhabagly.


Eurasian Hobby Falco subbuteo subbuteo

Common around Dzhabagly.


Little Bustard Tetrax tetrax

May 16: 1 male in the fields near Dzhabagly.


Common Sandpiper Actitis hypoleucos

Irregularly seen along streams near Dzhabagly.


Rock Pigeon Columba livia neglecta

Sometimes seen in the village of Dzhabagly, where Feral Pigeon in also common.


Common Wood Pigeon Columba palumbus casiotis

Common on the mountain slopes near Dzhabagly.


Eurasian Collared Dove Streptopelia decaocto decaocto

Common in Dzhabagly village.


European Turtle Dove Streptopelia turtur

May 12: 1 bird in Dzhabagly village was probably a migrant.


Oriental Turtle Dove Streptopelia orientalis meena

Common on the mountain slopes near Dzhabagly. Very shy, hard to get good looks.


Laughing Dove Streptopelia senegalensis

Common in Dzhabagly village.


Common Cuckoo Cuculus canorus

Fairly common around Dzhabagly. Once a brown morph female, on May 14.


European Nightjar Caprimulgus europaeus

June 1: 1 bird flushed from a dry riverbed near Dzhabagly.


Common Swift Apus apus pekinensis

May 11: few birds near Almaty train station.


European Bee-eater Merops apiaster

Dzhabagly: often heard, seldom seen.


European Roller Coracias garrulous garrulous

May 11: commonly seen from the train between Almaty and Taraz.

Common at Dzhabagly.


Eurasian Hoopoe Upupa epops epops

Common in and close to Dzhabagly village.


White-winged Woodpecker Dendrocopus leucopterus

May 13, 22, 25: 1 bird near Dzhabagly.


Eurasian Skylark Alauda arvensis

May 16, 20: singing near Dzhabagly.


Barn Swallow Hirundo rustica rustica

Common in Dzhabagly village.


Red-rumped Swallow Cecropis daurica rufula

A breeding pair was present in Dzhabagly village.


Tawny Pipit Anthus campestris

May 28 onwards: male singing in a field near Dzhabagly.


Tree Pipit Anthus trivialis trivialis

May 15: 2 birds near Dzhabagly village were probably migrants.


Citrine Wagtail Motacilla citreola calcarata

May 13: a male near the edge of Dzhabagly village was probably a migrant.


Grey Wagtail Motacilla cinerea cinerea

Fairly common along the bigger streams near Dzhabagly. During mid May common around Dzhabagly.


Masked Wagtail. Motacilla personata

Very common in Dzhabagly, juveniles from June 6 onwards.

May 21, 28, 30: A bird with a blackish back in Dzhabagly village, suggesting a hybrid origin with HodgsonТs Wagtail Motacilla alboides. The back was blackish, showing nearly now contrast with the head. The rump however was dark grey. Flanks dark grey.


Common Nightingale Luscinia megarhynchos hafizi

Common on the mountain slopes near Dzhabagly.


Bluethroat Luscinia svecica pallidogularis

May 15: male near Dzhabagly.

May 18: female near Dzhabagly.


Siberian Stonechat Saxicola maurus maurus

May 20: Female on a mountain slope near Dzhabagly.

May 26: Female near the entrance of the Aksu-Jabagly Nature Reserve.


Pied Wheatear Oenanthe pleschanka

May 30: female near Dzhabagly. The only sighting of any wheatear near Dzhabagly.


Blue Whistling Thrush Myophonus caeruleus

Irregularly seen along streams near Dzhabagly. A shy species, song heard only once.а


Common Blackbird Turdus merula intermedius

Fairly common in and around Dzhabagly. A male seen on May 16 in a forest patch appeared to me clearly bigger than the nominate subspecies.


Common Grasshopper Warbler Locustellaа naevia

May 12, 14: respectively 7 and 3 individuals flushed from the mountain slopes near Dzhabagly.


Paddyfield Warbler Acrocephalus agricola

Between mid May and early June Acrocephalus warblers were common on the mountain slopes and fields near Dzhabagly. Identification of these skulkers was difficult, but some were singing: babbling imitations, softer and less pretty than Marsh Warbler. These birds were warm brown, sometimes even recalling CettiТs Warbler in colouration, suggesting these birds were Paddyfield Warblers. However, the long pale supercilium was usually not obvious, concerning and confusing me a bit. maybe this is less obvious in adults. Once a dark tip was seen on the lower mandible, excluding Reed Warbler. After all I think that the most birds during the middle of May were Paddyfield, and European Reed Warbler took over by the end of the month.


European Reed Warbler Acrocephalus (scirpaceus) fuscus

May 29, June 6: 1 mist netted and photographed on a mountain slope near Dzhabagly. See Paddyfield Warbler.а


Sedge Warbler Acrocephalus schoenobaenus

May 14: 1 flushed from a field near Dzhabagly.


Lesser Whitethroat Sylvia curruca

Common migrant around Dzhabagly during the middle of May. Identification to (sub)species level tricky. I think these birds were not minula or althaea, but either curruca and/or halimodendri types. Short description of a typical bird, seen in an orchard on May 18: song a whistling melody. Big, structure of curruca. Flank unmarked, neither grey nor buffy. Ear-coverts clearly darker grey than crown, accentuated by pale eye-surround. Upperparts hard to judge on colour, grey-brown, not clearly greyer or lighter than nominate in Western Europe.


HumeТs Whitethroat Sylvia althaea

Fairly common on the mountain slopes near Dzhabagly, the first sighting on the 20th of May.

Song fairly similar to Common Whitethroat, usually clearer and a bit faster.

Compared to the migrants in the valley: bigger, greyer back and no clear ear-coverts. T6 completely white.


Common Whitethroat Sylvia communis

Fairly common on the mountain slopes near Dzhabagly.


Greenish Warbler Phylloscopus trochiloides viridanus

During the middle of May a common migrant around and in Dzhabagly. By the end of May less common and sometimes seen or heard on the mountain slopes.


HumeТs Leaf Warbler Phylloscopus humei humei

Common on the mountain slopes near Dzhabagly.


Common Chiffchaff Phylloscopus collybita tristis

During the middle of May subspecies tristis was a fairly common migrant on the mountain slopes near Dzhabagly. Latest sighting on the 26th of May.


Spotted Flycatcher Muscicapa striata

Very common migrant during the middle of May on the mountain slopes near Dzhabagly. Uncommon by the end of May and not seen in June.


Asian Paradise Flycatcher Terpsiphone paradisi leucogaster

May 14: a female in a patch of forest on a mountain slope near Dzhabagly. This patch was visited nearly daily during May and early June, so this single sighting suggests a migrant.

June5: about 4 female type birds near the entrance of the Aksu-Jabagly Nature Reserve.


Yellow-breasted Tit Cyanistes flavipectus

Fairly common around Dzhabagly, seen or heard daily in small numbers.

On June 1 a nest was found with at least 5 nestlings, about 10 days old. The nest was in the open top of a sign bordering the Akzu-Dzhabagly Nature Reserve. One bird of the pair was mist netted and photographed.


Turkestan Tit Parus bokharensis ferghanensis

Fairly common in and around Dzhabagly. However, by the end of May the species was very silent, and only seldom heard or seen. Thick bill compared to Great Tit.

According to Wassink (2007) hybrids with Great Tit occur in this region, but all birds seen looked like pure Turkestan Tits.


Great Tit Parus major major

May 11: 1 bird near Almaty train station.


White-crowned Penduline Tit Remiz coronatus

The nominate was our study species near Dzhabagly. 4 Small streams from mountain slopes were monitored. In this habitat the species is common, we found 25 nests.


Indian Golden Oriole Oriolus (oriolus) kundoo

Very common in and around Dzhabagly.


Red-backed Shrike Lanius collurio collurio

May 13: 1 singing male on a mountain slope near Dzhabagly was a migrant.


Long-tailed Shrike Lanius schach

Common in Dzhabagly, but not seen outside the village.


Lesser Grey Shrike Lanius minor

Common in and around Dzhabagly, also in the mountains.


Eurasian Magpie Pica pica bactriana

Common in and around Dzhabagly.


Rook Corvus frugilegus frugilegus

May 11: commonly seen from the train between Almaty and Taraz.

Not seen near Dzhabagly.


Carrion Crow Corvus corone orientalis

Common around Dzhabagly, sometimes in groups.


Common Raven Corvus corax

May 17: pair flying over head and calling on a mountain slope near Dzhabagly. Subspecies unknown.


Common Starling Sturnus vulgaris porphyronotus

Common breeding bird in Dzhabagly village.


Rose-coloured Starling Sturnis roseus Sound recorded

May 11: huge groups seen from the train between Almaty and Taraz.а

In Dzhabagly, the first sighting only on the 21st of May, abundant there from the 23rd on.

In June, at dawn (9PM) many small groups fly over Dzhabagly in western direction.


Common Myna Acridotheres tristis tristis

Very common in and around Dzhabagly. During the day they follow cattle in the fields, often sitting on the back of horses or sheep. By the end of the day they come back to the village, like the cattle. A pair was building a nest near our bed room, waking us up every morning.


House Sparrow Passer domesticus

I think the nominate subspecies is a common breeding bird in Dzhabagly. However, a House Sparrow photographed in Dzhabagly on June 6 looks like a bactrianus (Indian Sparrow).

May 12, 13 and 31: A group or respectively about 30, 20 and 10 birds migrating over the mountain slope in Southern direction. They fly very fast in a straight direction. The group of the 13th landed in a small bush and could be identified as the subspecies bactrianus. I expect the other groups to be bactrianus as well, because of their migratory behavior.


Eurasian Tree Sparrow Passer montanus dilutus

Very common in Dzhabagly.


Common Linnet Carduelis cannabina bella

A few sightings near Dzhabagly village.


Desert Finch Rhodospiza obsoleta

May 15: a pair in very fresh plumage feeding on the ground along the main street in Dzhabagly village.


Common Rosefinch Carpodacus erythrinus ferghanensis Sound recorded

Common on the higher mountain slopes near Dzhabagly. The red in males extends further on the underparts and upperparts than the nominate subspecies.

June 7: female flew in a mist net, while using it for trapping Penduline Tits. Released after photographing.


White-capped Bunting Emberiza stewarti

June 1: Song heard on a mountain slope near the entrance of the Aksu-Jabagly Nature Reserve.


Grey-necked Bunting Emberiza buchanani neobscura

May13: 2 birds at the edge of Dzhabagly village gave great views and must have been migrants.


Red-headed Bunting Emberiza bruniceps

Very common around Dzhabagly. Female seen only twice!


Corn Bunting Emberiza calandra buturlini

Abundant in the fields around Dzhabagly.



For any questions, corrections or whatsoever: feel free to email me on sanderbot@yahoo.co.uk





Hosted by uCoz