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Russian Greater White-fronted Goose - Saudi Arabia

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  • Russian Greater White-fronted Goose - Saudi Arabia

    A second calendar year Russian Greater White-fronted Goose was found in the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia last week with details here

    I have no experience of Russian sub-speices albifrons but this bird appears to be of this sub-species which is the one that occurs in Israel, although other eastern sub-species are fairly similar. No ages or sub-species have been noted in Saudi Arabia as far as I am aware so although the expected sub-species it is still something new for the bird records of the country.

    I am afraid the photos are not the best as they were all taken into the sun with these being the best ones of it on the ground and in flight.

    Any details of Greater White-fronted Goose in Saudi Arabia would be welcome as I only know of the following:-
    Two immature birds seen on a small treated sewage effluent pond at Dhahran Camp 14th November 1985
    Four birds at Sabkhat Al Fasl 16th November 2007 two of which were shot by a hunter
    Nine birds at Dhahran Hills percolation pond 13th to 22nd February 2008.
    One record from the Riyadh area prior to 1981.
    Attached Files
    Last edited by Jem Babbington; February 24th, 2012, 04:49 AM. Reason: Forgot Photos

  • #2
    Immature, Jedda, 24 Dec 1982 to 4 Mar 1983 (J. Saudi Arab. Nat. Hist. Soc. 2(3): 42)
    Singles, Yanbu, 1 Jan 1983, 17 Dec 1984 to 2 Feb 1985, and 25 Dec 1985 (Baldwin & Meadows 1988). Another photographed at Yanbu in Jan 1983 was plausibly ascribed to A. a. erythrops.
    First-winter, Mansouriyah near Riyadh, 21 Dec 1984 to 25 Jan 1985 (R. W. Burrough & A. J. Stagg)
    Up to 11 first-winters, Riyadh area, 8 Nov 1985 to late Feb 1986 (R. W. Burrough et al.)
    One, Mecca bypass, winter 1987/88 (P. Symens)
    Four, lower reaches of Riyadh watercourse, Nov 1990, had increased to 11 by 1 Feb 1991 (D. Middleton, J. Norton & W. Sawyer)

    All Riyadh area records are mentioned in Stagg's Birds of the Riyadh region.

    Guy M. Kirwan


    • #3

      Thanks very much for all these records - looks like I need to buy Staggs book.

      I have edited my website and added the data you have so kindly provided and acknowledged your help also.

      Thanks again for taking the time to send me the data, I really appreciate it.



      • #4
        Good find! Looks like a first winter to me, not second; the white forehead normally starts to develop towards the end of the first winter, before they migrate north in the spring.

        Unlikely to be relevant to a Saudi record, but there's been a huge influx of Eurasian Whitefronts in eastern Britain this winter, in Northumberland 4 the previous record numbers.
        Last edited by MichaelF; February 24th, 2012, 08:58 PM.


        • #5

          If I read right, it's not being claimed as a 2ndW but as 2nd calender year = 1stw after Jan 1st. Oh for the days when it was juvs, imms and sub-adults!