Norfolk Birders

Norfolk Birdwatching and beyond!

 

                                      Trip Report to Kazakhstan

                                                May 2012

              

                   

 

Introduction

 

This was a birding holiday organised by Naturetrek www.naturetrek.co.uk that I was meant to take part in 1998 but due to illness had to cancel at the last minute. Since then I have tried to visit Kazakhstan but due to timing I was always teaching. However I made a promise to Paul that I would not see my target bird of Ibisbill without him and so now that I am free to choose the timing of my holidays, I finally made it to Kazakhstan with Paul.

 

Itinerary

 

11th May        Heathrow  – Frankfurt - Almaty

 

12th May        Almaty - Bayseit - Charyn Gorge.

 

13th May        Bayseit.  Charyn Valley (Sogaty Plain- Bartogai Lake – Kokpek Valley)

 

14th May        Bayseit – Nurley – Nurley Marshes – Almaty Space Observatory

 

15th May        Almaty Space Observatory – Cosmos Station- Big Almaty Lake

 

16th May        Almaty Space Observatory – Almaty –Temboli –Konshengal

 

17th May        Konshengal – Topar Lake – Turanga Forest – Konshengal

 

18th May        Konshengal – Sobulak Lake – Almaty

 

19th May         Frankfurt - Heathrow

 

Flights

 

International flights to Almaty via Frankfurt with Lufthansa.

 

Money

 

As this was a ‘package tour’ (cost £1895 each) with all accommodation and food provided we only took about $300 US Dollars each with us. However I exchanged about $100 US Dollars to Kazakhstan Tenge at Almaty airport when we arrived, with which I bought a couple of fizzy drinks at Konshengal. Naturetrek provided free bottles of water throughout the tour but this does get a bit boring after 4 or 5 days. Other than an early morning walk in Almaty on the first day, we were in remote areas without any shops. We had a few free bottles of wine offered at some meal times but there was no opportunity of buying any beers except at the space observatory. We would have needed about £5 worth of money if we had been lucky enough to have had ‘use’ of the space observatory telescope. I exchanged most of my Tenge back to US Dollars at Almaty airport before we flew home.

 

Climate

 

The weather was hot (30°+ C) and sunny in the deserts but cold and sunny at the space observatory when we were at an altitude of 9 000 – 11 000 feet high. We had some sleet at night in the mountains.

 

Habitat

 

The steppes and deserts were a mixture of dry stony ground with scattered bushes of small scrub. Artesian wells at some places acted as good spots to lure thirsty birds. The Kokpek Pass of Charyn consisted of rock outcrops with rocky side valleys. The space observatory was accessed in a 4x4 bus up a steep mountainous tarmaced road to a height of 11 00 feet where snow still lingered on the tops of the Tien Shan Mountains.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                  The Steppes of Charyn                                                     Charyn Gorge

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

                     

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sogaty Plain                                             Big Almaty Lake in the Tien Shan Mountains

 

 

Konshengal

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Daily Log

 

11th May

 

Paul and I drove through the night to arrive at Heathrow at 5am for our 8am flight to Almaty via Frankfurt.

 

12th May

 

We arrived at Almaty airport at 12.30am where we collected our luggage, exchanged some US Dollars into Kazakhstan Tenge and boarded a minibus to take us to our city hotel for what remained of the night. We arrived at the hotel around 2am and after completing formalities went to bed.

 

Paul and I met up with the tour guide (Reg Thorpe) before breakfast and walked to a local city-centre park where we were surprised by the lack of birds. We had brief views of Nightingale and Lesser Whitethroat but better views of Common Myna and Oriental Crow. A perched Hobby at the hotel added to our list before our 7am breakfast.

 

We had a long drive to Bayseit and the group of 11 participants, Reg, local guide and driver all watched for birds sitting on the almost continuous wires through never-ending villages along the route. Our minibus was far too small for the number of people and birding gear and we felt crammed in. With scopes and camera equipment we certainly needed more space. We added European Bee-eater, Long-tailed Shrike, Lesser Grey Shrike, and other common birds to our list before arriving at our guest house where a rather large lady blocked the doorway. There was certainly no welcome or drinks as we removed our boots and trundled our luggage up stairs to various bedrooms.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                          

  Masked Wagtail

 

 

               Lesser Grey Shrike

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After depositing our luggage, we waited for the luggage trailer to be detached from the minibus that meant that we had time to admire a Masked Wagtail feeding in the vegetation as well as a Russian Jackdaw and Eurasian Hoopoe flying around.

 

 

Russian Jackdaw

 

Soon we were on our way through a gorge to the Charyn area. We stopped to watch the first of many Isabelline Wheatear and a pair of Rock Sparrows that had taken a liking to a sign. Black-eared Kite and European Roller were added to the list as we made our way to the top of the gorge before setting off across the plain on a trackway where we eventually stopped for lunch.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lunch on the plain

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We admired a mixed group of vultures that included: Himalayan Griffon Vulture, Black Vulture and Egyptian Vulture that eventually settled on the ground for us to admire through the telescopes. Black-bellied Sandgrouse took flight as we drove across the plain to an area where we admired a party of Lesser Kestrel. Paul located a Turkestan Shrike sitting on a bush in a valley whilst lunch was being prepared for us. A couple of Long-legged Buzzard were also in flight here. 

                                                                                                               

Calandra Lark flew over us whilst Skylark and a Shore Lark ran around in the grass. A Tawny Pipit graced the side of us as we left to head back to the road.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

          

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                              Turkestan Shrike                                                                       Isabelline Wheatear 

 

 

Black-bellied Sandgrouse

 

 

Back on the road we stopped to admire two distant Demoiselle Crane that Paul and I were pleased to see, as this was a tick for us. We headed back down the gorge stopping en route where we saw Grey-necked Bunting.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                  Demoiselle Cranes

 

Grey-necked Bunting 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Back at the guest house we enjoyed an evening meal together. The fact that the courses all arrived together was a feature we would get used to! After the checklist was completed everyone disappeared to bed. Paul was disappointed at the lack of any beer to buy!

 

13th May

 

Rose-coloured Starling

 

Most of us rose early to wander the gardens before breakfast. Here we admired White-crowned Penduline Tit, Golden Oriole, Rose-coloured Starling and White-winged Woodpecker. After a bowl of porridge and two fried eggs (another feature we would get used to) we set off for the Sogaty Plain into the Charyn Valley again. In a side valley we saw a distant Mongolian Finch as well as Linnet and Crimson-winged Finch. En-route to the plain we saw a Little Owl sitting out before we searched the plain for Desert Warbler. It took some time before I spotted a pair nesting, bringing food to a small bush. We stood well back for a short while before leaving them in peace. We also saw Short-toed Lark here too.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                      Desert Warbler                                                                 Bartogai Lake  

 

It was now very hot and we drove to Bartogai Lake where we birded whilst the driver set up lunch for us at the side of the lake. Northern Lapwing, Temminck’s Stint, Little Ringed Plover, Little Tern, Black-necked Grebe and Great Crested Grebe were all trip ticks but we added no life birds here.

 

Back down through Kokpek Valley we stopped for a while to see White-capped Bunting singing from a high perch on a rock, Hume’s Lesser Whitethroat and Rock Bunting; but the best sight was all the Black-veined White Butterflies present.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                 

 

 

       

 

 

 

                                     Black-veined White Butterflies                                        White-capped Bunting

 

14th May

 

After surviving another night of hard springs coming through the mattress and some interesting mis-understanding between our guides (i.e. the local guide was sticking to his plans no matter what our guide decided) we headed out towards Nurley but not before I had shouted to Paul that I was watching an Azure Tit. This was one of our ‘wanted ticks’. Paul was quick to join me as we admired this little beauty.

 

As we approached Nurley we drove off-road and headed up yet another track where an artesian well surfaced providing a small pool where birds were landing to drink. Pallas’s Sandgrouse pleased Paul and I amongst Black-bellied Sandgrouse. We also saw Desert Finch and Common Rosefinch but because of being in a group we were unable to obtain any photos. Crested Lark also sang before we moved to another pool over a railway line that afforded views of Black-winged Stilt, Temminck’s Stint, Common Sandpiper as well as Red-backed Shrike, Syke’s Warbler and a Rufous-tailed Bush Robin in the bushes. Sand Martin was added to the ever-growing trip list.

 

Stopping at Nurley Marshes we added some more species that included Great Reed Warbler, Black-headed Yellow Wagtail, Savi’s Warbler, Reed Bunting, Hume’s Yellow-browed Warbler, Marsh Harrier and Spanish Sparrow to the list.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                   Azure Tit                                                         Savi's Warbler     

 

 

Brown Dipper

 

We drove back to the guest house where the departing procedures were no more convivial than the welcome we had received and loaded the luggage into the trailer to drive back to Almaty. Here we exchanged vehicles part-way up the mountainside for a 4x4 bus which was much more acceptable as we had more room. We also had lunch at a picnic spot whilst we watched Greenish Warbler and Mistle Thrush. A little later we watched Blue Whistling Thrush too as it responded to a tape. After lunch the bus climbed up the now-tarmaced mountain road heading for the space observatory in the Tien Shan Mountains. However we stopped at the side of the fast-flowing mountain stream to look for Brown Dipper. This was the last one of the world’s dipper family for us and we were keen to see it. One was soon located and was joined by a second bird further up. A Booted Eagle was a good find by one of the group.

 

 

 

 

 

We proceeded further on up the mountain and stopped at Big Almaty Lake. Our pulses we now racing as this was the purpose of our trip. We searched the slopes of the lake with our scopes until finally we had our target species; not one but three Ibisbill all at the edge of the lake. It was such a shame that the birds were far too distant for a photograph. Paul and I celebrated as the others also enjoyed the views. The scenery was certainly to be admired here.

 

Big Almaty Lake

 

As soon as we had had our fill of the Ibisbill we wandered along a footpath overlooking the lake where a Himalayan Rubythroat gave us good views. A Black-throated Accentor sang from well above us too. A Grey Wagtail danced around in a little stream feeding into the lake.

 

We continued up to the space observatory where we were to spend two nights. Confusion reigned as we organised rooms with many swops being done as other groups arrived. The shared facilities were basic and ‘us’ women had to sing loudly whilst visiting the toilet with a non-closing door. I was one of the lucky ones to have a warm shower before the option was freezing cold water or get scalded! However the meal was taken with bottles of wine and Paul enjoyed a few beers, which made him a happy man. He slept on the floor at night though as he could not cope with the springs in the mattress.

 

 

 

 

 

 

15th May

 

Before breakfast the group set off behind the space observatory for some early-morning birding. We enjoyed views of White-winged Grosbeak and more Himalayan Rubythroat before locating a Sulphur-bellied Warbler.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

   

 

 

 

 

                               Himalayan Rubythroat                                                          White-winged Grosbeak

 

A Red-mantled Rosefinch was enjoyed by all before Brown Accentor was added to the list. A Bluethroat was also seen before we returned to have breakfast. Breakfast consisted of porridge and once again this was followed by yet more fried eggs.

 

 

 

Almaty Space Observatory

 

Once breakfast was over we boarded the bus and proceed higher up the mountain to 11 000 feet to the Cosmos Station. En route we stopped to look at Plain Mountain Finch at the side of the road. At the final barrier, where we left the bus, we were assaulted with birds instantly. Water Pipit in their pink breeding plumage was fantastic to see as was Himalayan Accentor.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                                                                       Paul at the Cosmos Station

                                                         

                                                                    

We looked for and found Güldenstadt’s Redstart on top of one of the buildings. It was a shame that it was just too spooky to photograph. Overhead Red-billed Chough and Alpine Chough soared above us in the wonderful sunny weather. A Northern Wheatear graced us with its presence before we started the long search for the snowcock.

                                                         

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                           Himalayan Accentor                                                                   Alpine Chough

 

It proved to be a very long search as we walked around the side of the mountain. By now, some of the group were suffering from the effects of altitude and walking was proving difficult in the thin air. I was suffering from tingles in my feet and hands. However I joined the search for the snowcock. We searched the scree and mountainside in vain before finally giving up and re-boarded the bus. Luckily the driver stopped on our descent to give us another chance of searching another part of the mountain. After a short while I spotted a Himalayan Snowcock, but before I could get the group onto it, it promptly disappeared behind a rock. A tense few minutes ensued before it re-appeared as not one Himalayan Snowcock but two Himalayan Snowcock. I was very relieved to say the least as the group got out of the bus and enjoyed scope views of them!                        

 

I was now suffering from altitude sickness as was relieved when we lost a few thousand feet and descended back down to the space observatory for lunch. After taking some medication I was a bit slow for the birding back down by Big Almaty Lake in the afternoon but after an hour or so felt a bit better. A Red-fronted Serin showed well, a bird I had missed the day before, was soon joined by Eversmann’s Redstart and Blue-capped Redstart within a few minutes. We wandered on and enjoyed distant views of Ibisbill once again. A Turkestan Red Pika hid behind some rocks as I was looking for a bird.

 

The next bird to be added to the list proved to be a bit of a challenge as the local guide had disappeared up the mountainside. He returned saying that he had heard it calling. In my weakened state I soon scrambled up the mountainside after him followed by a few others who thought they could make it. It certainly tested our fitness. I then had a brief view of a White-browed Tit Warbler. We kept a close eye on where I had seen it and it gave some more brief views before sitting out in the open before finally disappearing.

 

 Turkestan Red Pika

 

We added Tree Pipit to our list before returning to the space observatory for our evening meal. We negotiated with the local guide to arrange observing the stars through the space observatory telescope for a small fee. However, the temperature had plummeted and sleet had started to fall, completely obscuring the sky and so one of the events I had been looking forward to, did not take place. Grrrrr……

 

 

 

 

 

16th May

 

The group had a brief walk around the space observatory before breakfast taking some photos and adding Common Redstart to the list. Breakfast was eaten (more fried eggs) and we loaded up the bus and began our journey down the mountain. It was a glorious morning in the sun. We stopped at several places to search for birds. A Black-throated Accentor sat on the wires as we searched in the trees.

 

Black-throated Accentor

 

It was not until the second or third stop that we eventually found a singing Songar Tit. Our luck was out though for Nutcracker and we did not see one on our trip. Several Grey Wagtail entertained us as we walked by the fast-flowing mountain stream and admired the Spring flowers. We stopped once again to watch Brown Dipper and I heard a Grasshopper Warbler reeling but did not see it.

 

Lower down the mountain we switched back into the cramped minibus and set off through the city traffic for the long drive to Konshengal. We stopped just off the road by some trees where we admired a summer-plumaged Barred Warbler, a pair of Shrika, some Rufous Turtle Dove and a Red-headed Bunting whilst lunch was being prepared. It was now very hot and we sought the shade of the bus whilst we ate.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                   Temboli                                                                                    Red-headed Bunting

 

After many miles the thunder clouds were gathering and we watched lightning in the distance. We arrived at Temboli where we were advised not to take cameras as the authorities do not allow the taking of photographs of the rock carvings that are present here. This proved to be a mis-understanding and I bitterly regretted having left my camera in the minibus. We walked about half a mile across stony desert where Bimaculated Lark were present as well as good numbers of Red-headed Bunting. Once we reached a marshy area Red-rumped Swallow were amongst the hirundines. Lesser Whitethroat were also plentiful.

 

I was a bit under-whelmed by the rock carvings having been spoilt by aboriginal rock carvings two years ago in Australia and left those that were interested looking at them whilst I searched for birds. At one of the rock outcrops an Eastern Rock Nuthatch had made a nest out of mud and I cursed at my camera being back in the bus. We watched as the adult birds fed the chicks in the nest. Spotted Flycatcher flew around and posed for those that had brought cameras.

 

Our return walk produced Siberian Chiffchaff. We made it back to the bus just in time as the heavens opened and rain fell. This was to have dire consequences for us, as the spot for White-winged Lark was only given a minute or so as the guide assured us he know of a better spot later on in the trip, when he hoped the weather would be better. Unfortunately I had developed a bad migraine and only had one tablet left, which I wanted to save for the flight home. I was very relieved to arrive at the tented camp and went straight to bed, missing the evening meal, which I was told was the best meal of the trip yet.

 

17th May

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                         Konshengal Campsite                                                     Restaurant and Cookhouse!

 

Unfortunately I had suffered in pain from my migraine all night and was not fit enough for the early morning birding at first light. I decided to take my last tablet, as I could see that otherwise, I would miss the whole day’s birding. By the time the group returned from their travels to see Caspian Plover and McQueen’s Bustard I felt a bit better. Although I was disappointed not to have seen the birds I have been fortunate enough to have seen both species well in Israel. I noted Grey-headed Yellow Wagtail and White Wagtail at the campsite.                        

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                              Paul using the washing facilities                            The landscape at the campsite

 

After a good breakfast we set off on a long drive to Topar Lakes. En-route we saw Short-toed Eagle and Steppe Grey Shrike. The landscape was barren but every so often there were ridges of sand which we climbed to give is better views. On one of the ridges we explored we saw a Long-legged Buzzard’s nest clinging to a small tree. For such a big bird it seemed bizarre. Spotted Flycatcher was also flitting around here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                      

 

 

 

 

 

 

Long-legged Buzzard nest

 

 

Spotted Flycatcher

 

 

 

 

 

 

The water of the lakes at Topar gave a refreshingly different habitat after all the blandness of the desert. We knew we would be ‘padding out’ the trip list here, with little in the way of ‘lifers’ but still nice to see, especially in Summer plumage. Tufted Duck, Ferruginous Duck, Little Grebe, Black-headed Gull, Common Tern, Coot, Moorhen, Gadwall all seemed common but Black Tern were good to see in all their finery. Dalmatian Pelican and White Pelican were soaring around on the thermals as Great White Egret and Black-crowned Night Heron flew by. Bearded Tit called but I was the only one to see them. Paul and I enjoyed good views again of Azure Tit as they collected nesting material.

 

 

Azure Tit

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Paddyfield Warbler sang in the reeds as a Common Kingfisher flew by rather quickly. Red-crested Pochard was added to the list as was Garden Warbler. We were surprised by a Common Pheasant as it strolled over the road.

 

Black-crowned Night Heron

 

Back in the minibus once again we were all complaining that we were hungry and we motored on to Turanga Forest where a picnic table was set up, whilst we explored the scattered trees for Turkestan Tit, which gave itself up rather easily. After lunch Yellow-eyed Stock Dove needed a co-ordinated walk through the trees which we then admired through the telescope. Saxaul Sparrow was found by the local guide and we all watched a couple of birds as they tried to hide themselves in a denser part of the tree.

 

   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

Saxaul Sparrow                                                          Temminck’s Stint

 

It was a long drive back to the camp-site but we stopped en-route at a bus stop where we admired a pair Saxaul Sparrow again. We stopped at an artesian well near the camp-site where we had good views of Temminck’s Stint and Little Ringed Plover. I felt much better now and enjoyed a hearty meal back at the camp site all washed down with a nice glass of wine!

 

18th May

 

 

A wander around the camp-site at first light gave us some good views of Black-bellied Sandgrouse at the artesian well. Getting a good photograph of them was another matter. Paul and I felt a bit frustrated with our photography as we prefer to have our own time-scale and be on our own. However we appreciated that the remoteness and birding so much off road, local knowledge was always going to be necessary here and so Naturetrek’s trip to Kazakhstan seemed a good option. A Citrine Wagtail gave good views and I left Paul on his own whilst I went for breakfast. Paul was oblivious to the fact that we were all enjoying breakfast whilst he was having stunning views of Demoiselle Cranes and Pallas’s Sandgrouse at the watering hole.

 

 

Black-bellied Sandgrouse

 

                                                 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                            

 

 

 

 

 

 

European Nightjar

 

 

Ortolan Bunting

 

 

 

 

 

 

After breakfast we drove 30km west of Konshengal to a spot where the local guide thought he could show us White-winged Lark. It was already very hot and I was glad I had the sense to put a bottle of water into my pocket of my ‘zip-off’ trousers. The local guide was a man on a mission and soon disappeared into the distance across the desert. Some of us attempted to follow him, but as a group we were soon ‘strung-out’ a huge distance apart. Reg, Geoff, Paul and I were within shouting distance of one another as we examined hundreds of Calandra Lark. After a fruitless search Reg, Geoff, Paul and myself decided to return up through a wadi where there were a few bushes holding a few birds. Here we enjoyed views of European Nightjar, Ortolan Bunting, Blyth’s Reed Warbler and several Red-headed Bunting. Lesser Whitethroats and a Rufous-tailed Bush-robin also added to the scene.

 

 

Rufous-tailed Bush Robin

 

 

 

 

 

Once the group were re-assembled back in the bus and the local guide was back from his luck-less mission, we were resigned to the fact the White-winged Lark had evaded all our attempts to see it. Quenching all thirsts we settled down to the long drive back towards Almaty.

 

We stopped briefly at a spot known as the ‘wishing tree’ where a lone tree is packed with birds as it is the only tree for miles around. Here we saw many Hume’s Yellow-browed Warbler and Greenish Warbler as well as a Nightingale. A Pied Wheatear put in a brief appearance too.

 

Lunch was taken at Sobulak Lake where we added many more trip ticks that ‘padded out’ the list. There were many Rose-coloured Starling here.

 

 

Greenshank, Spotted Redshank, Whooper Swan, Wood Sandpiper, Mallard, Garganey, Common Redshank, Oystercatcher were soon spotted until I found a White-headed Duck. After we had eaten we wandered over to the other side of the road where there was another big pool. Storm clouds were gathering and we quickly saw as many species as we could muster. Gull-billed Tern, Terek Sandpiper, and White-winged Terns were stunning in their summer plumage. Paul found a Lesser Sandplover that we all admired, just before a halt was called and we made it back to the bus just as the first few spots of rain fell. It turned out to be quite a storm.

 

Rose-coloured Starling

 

 

We motored on back to Almaty where we got caught up in the ‘rush-hour’. We were deposited back to the hotel where after a shower and a meal we grabbed two hours sleep before heading to the airport where I exchanged most of my Kazakhstan Tenge back to US Dollars.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I would like to thank Reg and Naturetrek for a very enjoyable trip.

  

Species List

 

  1. Little Grebe      Tachybaptus ruficollis    17/05/2012      Topar Lake     
  2. Great Crested Grebe    Podiceps cristatus         13/05/2012      Bartogai Lake  
  3. Black-necked Grebe    Podiceps nigricollis       13/05/2012      Bartogai Lake  
  4. Great Cormorant          Phalacrocorax carbo carbo       17/05/2012      Topar Lake     
  5. White Pelican   Pelecanus onocrotalus   17/05/2012      Topar Lake     
  6. Dalmatian Pelican         Pelecanus crispus          17/05/2012      Topar Lake     
  7. Grey Heron      Ardea cinerea   13/05/2012      Bayseit
  8. Great White Egret         Egretta alba      17/05/2012      Topar Lake     
  9. Black-crowned Night-heron     Nycticorax nycticorax   17/05/2012      Topar Lake     
  10. White-headed Duck     Oxyura leucocephala    18/05/2012      Sobulak Lake  
  11. Whooper Swan            Cygnus cygnus  18/05/2012      Sobulak Lake  
  12. Ruddy Shelduck           Tadorna ferruginea        13/05/2012      Bartogai Lake  
  13. Gadwall            Anas strepera   17/05/2012      Topar Lake     
  14. Mallard            Anas platyrhynchos platyrhynchos         18/05/2012      Sobulak Lake  
  15. Garganey          Anas querquedula         18/05/2012      Sobulak Lake  
  16. Red-crested Pochard    Netta rufina      17/05/2012      Topar Lake     
  17. Ferruginous Duck         Aythya nyroca  17/05/2012      Topar Lake     
  18. Tufted Duck     Aythya fuligula  17/05/2012      Topar Lake     
  19. Black-eared Kite          Milvus lineatus [migrans]           12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  20. Egyptian Vulture           Neophron percnopterus            12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  21. Himalayan Griffon-vulture         Gyps himalayensis         12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  22. Eurasian Black Vulture  Aegypius monachus      12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  23. Short-toed Eagle          Circaetus gallicus gallicus          17/05/2012      Konshengal     
  24. Western Marsh-harrier Circus aeruginosus        14/05/2012      Nurley Marshes           
  25. Shikra  Accipiter badius            16/05/2012      Temboli Road  
  26. Eurasian Sparrowhawk Accipiter nisus  12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  27. Long-legged Buzzard    Buteo rufinus    12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  28. Golden Eagle    Aquila chrysaetos         13/05/2012      Sogaty Plain    
  29. Booted Eagle    Hieraaetus pennatus      14/05/2012      Big Almaty Lake          
  30. Lesser Kestrel  Falco naumanni 12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  31. Common Kestrel          Falco tinnunculus          12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  32. Eurasian Hobby            Falco subbuteo 12/05/2012      Almaty
  33. Himalayan Snowcock   Tetraogallus himalayensis          15/05/2012      Cosmos Station (Almaty)         
  34. Chukar Alectoris chukar           12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  35. Common Pheasant        Phasianus colchicus       17/05/2012      Topar Lake     
  36. Common Moorhen       Gallinula chloropus        17/05/2012      Topar Lake     
  37. Eurasian Coot   Fulica atra        17/05/2012      Topar Lake     
  38. Demoiselle Crane         Grus virgo        12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  39. Ibisbill  Ibidorhyncha struthersii 14/05/2012      Big Almaty Lake          
  40. Black-winged Stilt        Himantopus himantopus            14/05/2012      Nurley 
  41. Little Ringed Plover      Charadrius dubius         13/05/2012      Bartogai Lake  
  42. Lesser Sand Plover       Charadrius mongolus    18/05/2012      Sobulak Lake  
  43. Northern Lapwing        Vanellus vanellus           13/05/2012      Bartogai Lake  
  44. Spotted Redshank        Tringa erythropus          18/05/2012      Sobulak Lake  
  45. Common Redshank      Tringa totanus   18/05/2012      Sobulak Lake  
  46. Common Greenshank   Tringa nebularia            18/05/2012      Sobulak Lake  
  47. Wood Sandpiper          Tringa glareola  18/05/2012      Sobulak Lake  
  48. Terek Sandpiper           Tringa cinerea   18/05/2012      Sobulak Lake  
  49. Common Sandpiper      Tringa hypoleucos         13/05/2012      Bayseit
  50. Temminck's Stint          Calidris temminckii        13/05/2012      Bartogai Lake  
  51. Steppe Gull      Larus Cachinnans (barabensis)  17/05/2012      Topar Lake     
  52. Black-headed Gull        Larus ridibundus           17/05/2012      Topar Lake     
  53. Gull-billed Tern Sterna nilotica   18/05/2012      Sobulak Lake  
  54. Common Tern  Sterna hirundo  17/05/2012      Topar Lake     
  55. Little Tern         Sterna albifrons 13/05/2012      Bartogai Lake  
  56. White-winged Tern       Chlidonias leucopterus  17/05/2012      Topar Lake     
  57. Black Tern       Chlidonias niger niger    17/05/2012      Topar Lake     
  58. Pallas's Sandgrouse      Syrrhaptes paradoxus   14/05/2012      Nurley 
  59. Black-bellied Sandgrouse         Pterocles orientalis        12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  60. Rock Dove       Columba livia    12/05/2012      Almaty
  61. Yellow-eyed Stock Dove         Columba eversmanni     17/05/2012      Turanga Forest
  62. Wood Pigeon   Columba palumbus       12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  63. Oriental Turtle-dove     Streptopelia orientalis    16/05/2012      Temboli Road  
  64. Eurasian Collared-dove            Streptopelia decaocto   12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  65. Common Cuckoo         Cuculus canorus           12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  66. Little Owl         Athene noctua  13/05/2012      Sogaty Plain    
  67. European Nightjar        Caprimulgus europaeus 18/05/2012      Konshengal     
  68. Common Swift Apus apus        12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  69. Common Kingfisher      Alcedo atthis    17/05/2012      Topar Lake     
  70. European Bee-eater      Merops apiaster           12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  71. European Roller            Coracias garrulus          12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  72. Eurasian Hoopoe          Upupa epops    12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  73. White-winged Woodpecker      Dendrocopos leucopterus         13/05/2012      Bayseit
  74. Calandra Lark  Melanocorypha calandra           12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  75. Bimaculated Lark         Melanocorypha bimaculata       16/05/2012      Temboli           
  76. Short-toed Lark           Calandrella brachydactyla [cinerea]       13/05/2012      Sogaty Plain    
  77. Lesser Short-toed Lark            Calandrella rufescens    18/05/2012      Sobulak Lake  
  78. Crested Lark    Galerida cristata            14/05/2012      Nurley 
  79. Eurasian Skylark           Alauda arvensis            12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  80. Horned Lark    Eremophila alpestris      12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  81. Sand Martin     Riparia riparia   14/05/2012      Nurley 
  82. Barn Swallow   Hirundo rustica 12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  83. Red-rumped Swallow   Hirundo daurica            16/05/2012      Temboli           
  84. House Martin   Delichon urbica 12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  85. Tawny Pipit      Anthus campestris         12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  86. Tree Pipit         Anthus trivialis  15/05/2012      Big Almaty Lake          
  87. Water Pipit       Anthus spinoletta          15/05/2012      Cosmos Station (Almaty)         
  88. White Wagtail   Motacilla alba alba        17/05/2012      Konshengal     
  89. Pied Wagtail     Motacilla alba yarrelli    12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  90. Citrine Wagtail  Motacilla citreola          18/05/2012      Konshengal     
  91. Black-headed Wagtail  Motacilla flava feldegg  14/05/2012      Nurley Marshes           
  92. Grey-headed Wagtail    Motacilla flava thunbergi           17/05/2012      Konshengal     
  93. Grey Wagtail    Motacilla cinerea          14/05/2012      Big Almaty Lake          
  94. Brown Dipper  Cinclus pallasii  14/05/2012      Big Almaty Lake          
  95. Himalayan Accentor     Prunella himalayana       15/05/2012      Cosmos Station (Almaty)         
  96. Brown Accentor           Prunella fulvescens        15/05/2012      Almaty Space Observatory      
  97. Black-throated Accentor          Prunella atrogularis        14/05/2012      Big Almaty Lake          
  98. Greyish Scrub-robin     Cercotrichas galactotes familiaris           14/05/2012      Nurley 
  99. Common Nightingale    Luscinia megarhynchos 12/05/2012      Almaty
  100. White-tailed Rubythroat            Luscinia pectoralis        14/05/2012      Big Almaty Lake          
  101. Bluethroat         Luscinia svecica            15/05/2012      Almaty Space Observatory      
  102. Eversmann's Redstart    Phoenicurus erythronota            15/05/2012      Big Almaty Lake          
  103. Blue-capped Redstart   Phoenicurus caeruleocephalus   15/05/2012      Big Almaty Lake          
  104. Common Redstart        Phoenicurus phoenicurus phoenicurus    16/05/2012      Almaty Space Observatory           
  105. Guldenstadt's Redstart  Phoenicurus erythrogaster         15/05/2012      Cosmos Station (Almaty)         
  106. Northern Wheatear       Oenanthe oenanthe       15/05/2012      Cosmos Station (Almaty)         
  107. Pied Wheatear  Oenanthe pleschanka    12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  108. Isabelline Wheatear      Oenanthe isabellina       12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  109. Rufous-tailed Rock-thrush        Monticola saxatilis        12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  110. Blue Whistling-thrush [sp]         Myiophonus caeruleus  14/05/2012      Big Almaty Lake          
  111. Eurasian Blackbird        Turdus merula   12/05/2012      Almaty
  112. Mistle Thrush    Turdus viscivorus          14/05/2012      Big Almaty Lake          
  113. Savi's Warbler  Locustella luscinioides   14/05/2012      Nurley Marshes           
  114. Paddyfield Warbler       Acrocephalus agricola agricola  17/05/2012      Topar Lake     
  115. Blyth's Reed-warbler    Acrocephalus dumetorum         18/05/2012      Konshengal     
  116. Great Reed-warbler      Acrocephalus arundinaceus       14/05/2012      Nurley Marshes           
  117. Sykes' Warbler Hippolais rama [caligata]           14/05/2012      Nurley 
  118. Garden Warbler           Sylvia borin      17/05/2012      Topar Lake     
  119. Common Whitethroat   Sylvia communis           16/05/2012      Almaty Space Observatory      
  120. Lesser Whitethroat       Sylvia curruca   12/05/2012      Almaty
  121. Hume's Lesser Whitethroat       Sylvia althaea [curruca] 13/05/2012      Kokpek Valley
  122. Desert Warbler Sylvia nana       13/05/2012      Sogaty Plain    
  123. Barred Warbler            Sylvia nisoria    16/05/2012      Temboli Road  
  124. Siberian Chiffchaff        Phylloscopus collybita tristis      16/05/2012      Temboli           
  125. Sulphur-bellied Warbler            Phylloscopus griseolus  15/05/2012      Almaty Space Observatory      
  126. Hume's Yellow-browed Warbler          Phylloscopus inornatus humei    14/05/2012      Nurley Marshes           
  127. Greenish Warbler         Phylloscopus trochiloides trochiloides    14/05/2012      Big Almaty Lake          
  128. White-browed Tit-warbler        Leptopoecile sophiae    15/05/2012      Big Almaty Lake          
  129. Spotted Flycatcher       Muscicapa striata          16/05/2012      Temboli           
  130. Songar Tit        Poecile montanus songarus        16/05/2012      Almaty Space Observatory      
  131. Great Tit           Parus major major        12/05/2012      Almaty
  132. Turkestan Tit    Parus bokharensis         17/05/2012      Turanga Forest
  133. Azure Tit          Parus cyanus    14/05/2012      Bayseit
  134. Eastern Rock Nuthatch Sitta tephronota            16/05/2012      Temboli           
  135. White-crowned Penduline-tit     Remiz coronatus [pendulinus]    13/05/2012      Bayseit
  136. Golden Oriole   Oriolus oriolus  13/05/2012      Bayseit
  137. Red-backed Shrike      Lanius collurio [cristatus]           14/05/2012      Nurley 
  138. Isabelline Shrike           Lanius isabellinus [cristatus]       12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  139. Long-tailed Shrike        Lanius schach   12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  140. Lesser Grey Shrike       Lanius minor     12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  141. Steppe Shrike   Lanius excubitor pallidirostris    17/05/2012      Konshengal     
  142. Black-billed Magpie     Pica pica          12/05/2012      Almaty
  143. Red-billed Chough        Pyrrhocorax pyrrhocorax          15/05/2012      Cosmos Station (Almaty)         
  144. Yellow-billed Chough   Pyrrhocorax graculus    15/05/2012      Cosmos Station (Almaty)         
  145. Eurasian Jackdaw         Corvus monedula          12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  146. Rook    Corvus frugilegus          12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  147. Carrion Crow   Corvus corone corone  12/05/2012      Almaty
  148. Hooded Crow  Corvus corone cornix   18/05/2012      Sobulak Lake  
  149. Brown-necked Raven   Corvus ruficollis            18/05/2012      Konshengal     
  150. Rose-coloured Starling Sturnus roseus  12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  151. Common Starling          Sturnus vulgaris 13/05/2012      Bartogai Lake  
  152. Common Myna            Acridotheres tristis        12/05/2012      Almaty
  153. Saxaul Sparrow            Passer ammodendri      17/05/2012      Turanga Forest
  154. House Sparrow            Passer domesticus        12/05/2012      Almaty
  155. Spanish Sparrow          Passer hispaniolensis [domesticus]         14/05/2012      Nurley Marshes           
  156. Eurasian Tree Sparrow Passer montanus           13/05/2012      Bayseit
  157. Rock Sparrow  Petronia petronia          12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  158. Red-fronted Serin         Serinus pusillus 15/05/2012      Big Almaty Lake          
  159. European Greenfinch    Carduelis chloris           12/05/2012      Almaty
  160. Grey-crowned Goldfinch          Carduelis carduelis caniceps      12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  161. Eurasian Linnet Carduelis cannabina      13/05/2012      Sogaty Plain    
  162. Plain Mountain-finch     Leucosticte nemoricola 15/05/2012      Cosmos Station (Almaty)         
  163. Crimson-winged Finch  Rhodopechys sanguinea            13/05/2012      Sogaty Plain    
  164. Mongolian Finch           Rhodopechys mongolica           13/05/2012      Sogaty Plain    
  165. Desert Finch     Rhodopechys obsoleta  14/05/2012      Nurley 
  166. Common Rosefinch      Carpodacus erythrinus  14/05/2012      Nurley 
  167. Red-mantled Rosefinch Carpodacus rhodochlamys        15/05/2012      Almaty Space Observatory      
  168. White-winged Grosbeak           Mycerobas carnipes     15/05/2012      Almaty Space Observatory      
  169. Chestnut-breasted Bunting        Emberiza stewarti         13/05/2012      Kokpek Valley
  170. Rock Bunting    Emberiza cia     13/05/2012      Kokpek Valley
  171. Grey-necked Bunting    Emberiza buchanani      12/05/2012      Bayseit Road   
  172. Ortolan Bunting            Emberiza hortulana       18/05/2012      Konshengal     
  173. Red-headed Bunting     Emberiza bruniceps [melanocephala]     16/05/2012      Temboli Road  
  174. Reed Bunting    Emberiza schoeniclus    14/05/2012      Nurley Marshes           

 

Mammals

 

1.      Turkestan Red Pika Ochotona rutila 15/05/2012 Big Almaty Lake

2.      Grey Marmot Marmotta baibacina  14/05/2012 Big Almaty Lake

3.      Desert Hare Lepus Tolai   14/05/2012 Nurley

4.      Corsac Fox Vulpus corsac 14/05/2012 Nurley

5.      Giant Gerbil Rhombomys opimus 13/05/2012 Sogaty Plain

6.      Eurasian Red Squirrel Sciurus vulgaris 16/05/2012 road to Almaty Space Observatory

7.      Stoat Mustella erminea 15/05/2012 Almaty Space Observatory

 

 

                                                                                                      

 

 

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