Kiryl is finally on the move – on the 10th of October he left his breeding grounds near Zhanteke in Kazakhstan, and after flying almost 1900 km in four days, crossing the Caspian Sea on his way, he is now in southern Russia.
It’s great news that we have not lost him, and he is rapidly catching up with the other birds taking the western route. Canan, Nikoo and Ajaz are just north of Lake Van, on the Muş-Bulanık plains in Turkey – a region that evidently needs more investigation at some point in the future – while Shirin is in the Ceylanpınar area on the Turkey/Syria border, with Vyan heading that way. Colleagues from Doğa Derneği, the BirdLife Partner in Turkey, have been working with volunteers to check for birds at the State Farm at Ceylanpınar. The first flock of 6 birds was sighted on the 4th of October.
Sanjar is near pivot fields in Tabuk, Saudi Arabia, the first bird to reach a wintering area (on the 11th October), and one where Sociable Lapwings have been recorded before. In the east, Maysa remains in Turkmenistan, the site of the amazing discovery of such concentrations of birds this autumn. Tesfaye has moved on, and is in Afghanistan, getting ready for the big effort required to cross the high mountains.
Now that our field team is back, we will be able to report soon on the surveys carried out in Turkmenistan/Uzbekistan.