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IRAN

Sunday 30th April - Saturday 13th May 2017

Mark Beaman

The endemic Pleske's Ground Jay is definitely Iran's star bird. A great character, and noisy to boot!  (Mark Beaman)

The endemic Pleske's Ground Jay is definitely Iran's star bird. A great character, and noisy to boot! (Mark Beaman)

It was great to get back to Iran again. What a brilliant country this is for birding, and so varied and scenic as well, never mind the hospitality of the Iranians, a much misunderstood people (so many of us conflate Iranians with their government of course). This was definitely our most successful Iran tour ever in terms of the number of specialities recorded, among a grand total of 251 bird species (as per current IOC taxonomy) and 13 species of mammal. Among the greatest highlights were the endemic Pleske’s Ground Jay, the near-endemic Caspian Tit and the restricted-range Sind Woodpecker, Mesopotamian Crow, Grey Hypocolius, Black-headed Penduline Tit, Basra Reed Warbler, Hume’s Whitethroat, Hume’s Wheatear, Red-tailed Wheatear, Iraq Babbler and Afghan Babbler, as well as Caspian Snowcock, See-see Partridge, Macqueen’s Bustard, White-cheeked Tern, Pallid Scops Owl, Egyptian Nightjar, Steppe Grey Shrike, Plain Leaf Warbler, Radde’s Accentor, Dead Sea Sparrow, Pale Rockfinch, Asian Crimson-winged Finch and Grey-necked Bunting, not to mention Indo-Pacific Hump-backed Dolphin, Persian Ibex, Goitred Gazelle and Onager (Asiatic Wild Ass).