Birds playing in the water
Birds playing in the water in the UAE. Abu Dhabi Golf Club is documenting all birdlife spotted on the course. Image Credit: Virendra Saklani/Gulf News

An official report has been published detailing all the bird sightings since August 2020 during regular monthly visits at and around Abu Dhabi Golf Club.

A total of 169 bird species have been recorded and logged on the resort in this report covering the period August 2020 — June 2021. Six of the species spotted are of conservation concern.

Special mention has been made to the Socotra cormorant, which is classified as ‘vulnerable’ and the Eurasian wigeon, bar-tailed godwit, black-tailed godwit, curlew sandpiper and Alexandrine parakeet, which are on the ‘near threatened’ list.

Others of interest that have been spotted which can be scarce in the UAE, either seasonally or at any of the time of the year, include the greater flamingo, little swift, common moorhen, black-necked grebe, Pacific golden plover, Eurasian curlew, pallas gull, whiskered tern, shikra, Indian roller, common kestrel, corn bunting and rose-coloured starling.

Andrea Faldella, Club Operations Manager at Abu Dhabi Golf Club, said: “We are very grateful to both Oscar Campbell and Simon Lloyd for compiling these reports and coordinating and recording all these bird species sightings. It is a responsibility for us all at Abu Dhabi Golf Club to appreciate the nature in and around our golf course and to have a culture of working alongside nature. This is just part of our Abu Dhabi Golf Club that we are working on, as we strive to receive official certification, that is acknowledged and recognised by the golf and sporting industry as well as all the government of Abu Dhabi authorities. We are excited and proud to see that over the last year or so, there has been an increase of seven new species of bird sightings on the list and we are informed by both Oscar and Simon that this number is likely to increase in time, albeit at a slow pace.”

All the sightings of birds are identified, counted and all records are submitted to the UAE Bird Database alongside other similar reports of sightings which are all linked to the global database eBird.