QBRC Decisions

Long-Legged Buzzard in flight against a blue sky

This page includes details of all sightings ratified by the Qatar Birds Records Committee (QBRC).

The committee assesses which species – and which observations – are eligible to be admitted to the Qatar List, thereby ensuring a validated, up-to-date record of the country’s wild birds.

The Qatar Bird Records Committee is a voluntary organisation established in 1996. Membership is currently Richard Porter (Honorary President), Gavin Farnell (Recorder), Neil Morris, Andrea Dogliero and Simon Tull.

QBRC assesses claims bi-annually. When applicable, QBRC seeks independent expertise to help in their assessment. All claimants are informed of the committee’s decisions directly. Successful claims are published on this website and in Sandgrouse, the journal of the Ornithological Society of the Middle East (OSME).

Records of sightings can be submitted to QBRC here.

Records for H2, 2020 and H1, 2021

The following records were ratified by QBRC for the period 1 June 2020 to 30 June 2021. Highlights included first records of Horned Lark Eremophila alpestris, and ‘White-headed Wagtail’ Motacilla (flava) leucocephala as well as a historic record of Dusky Thrush Turdus eunomus from 2015.

White-fronted Goose Anser albifrons. 14 birds off Umm Bab, 14 November 2020 (anon). 12th record.

Red-crested Pochard Netta rufina. Up to 12 birds, Irkayya Farm Lagoons, 9 January-12, February 2021 (Z AbdulRahman, G Farnell). Fourth record.

Great Spotted Cuckoo Clamator glandarius. A first summer bird, Irkayya Farm, 6 July 2020 (Z AbdulRahman, S Al Seeri). Sixth record.

Grey-headed Swamphen Porphyrio poliocephalus. One Irkayya Farm Lagoons, 22 April 2021 (A Viechec); Two Abu Naklah, 13 May 2021 (G Farnell). Sixth and seventh records.

Spur-winged Lapwing Vanellus spinosus. Six Saliya STP, 15-24 March 2021 (S Al Seeri, S Tull); one Irkayya Farm, 27 March 2021 (M Al Baker). 12th-13th records.

Spur-winged Lapwing Vanellus spinosus, © Simon Tull

Sociable Lapwing Vanellus gregarius. Three Irkayya Farm, 25-26 October 2020 (S Odeh, S Tull); One Saliya STP 25-26 October 2020 (H Al Khulaifi, Simon Tull); One Irkayya Farm, 12 December 2020 to 2 January 2021 (G Farnell, Sheikh M Al Thani); Two Saliya STP, 9 December 2020 (Z AbdulRahman); One Irkayya Farm, 13 March 2021 (Sheikh M Al Thani, M Al Baker, G Farnell). 12th-16th records.

Sociable Lapwing Vanellus gregarius, © Simon Tull

White-tailed Lapwing Vanellus leucurus. One Abu Naklah, 21 October 2020 (Z AbdulRahman); One North Al Khor, 20 November 2020 (H Al Khulaifi). 20th-21st records.

Pin-tailed Snipe Gallinago stenura. One Sealine Beach Resort, 17 October 2020 (S Odeh, Sheikh M Al Thani). Second record.

Eurasian Bittern Botaurus stellaris. One Saliya STP, 17 October 2020 (M Kariyil). Tenth record.

Black-winged Kite Elanus caeruleus. One ssp vociferus, Irkayya Farm, 30 October 2020 (S Tull, Sheikh M Al Thani); One Saliya STP, 16 January 2021 (M Al Baker). 12th-13th records.

Black-winged Kite Elanus caeruleus vociferus, © Simon Tull

Crested Honey Buzzard Pernis ptilorhynchus. Irkayya Farm records: one dark morph 23-26 October 2020 (Sheikh M Al Thani); One trapped and now in a private collection 30 October 2020; one male 4 December 2020 (anon); one pale morph 3-4 January 2021 (Z AbdulRahman), one dark morph 4 January 2021 (Sheikh M Al Thani), one pale morph 7 January 2021 (Sheikh M Al Thani), one dark morph 18-24 January 2021 (Sheikh M Al Thani); two Doha Golf Club, 3 March-28 April 2021 (L Farnell). 11th-19th records.

Steppe Eagle Aquila nipalensis. A juvenile south of Umm Bab, 28 April 2021. Sixth record.

Eastern Imperial Eagle Aquila heliaca. A subadult, Abu Naklah, 1 January 2021 (S Al Seeri). Seventh record.

Northern Steppe Buzzard Buteo buteo vulpinus. One Irkayya Farm, 27 March 2021 (S Tull); one at a private farm, North Qatar, 11 May 2021 (H Al Khulaifi). Ninth and tenth records.

Amur Falcon Falco amurensis. All records Irkayya Farm and all by Sheikh M Al Thani: a juvenile/female bird, 11 November 2020; three juvenile/female birds, 29 November 2020; one juvenile/female, 2-15 December 2020 (Plate 7); one adult male, 23 March 2021; one juvenile/female, 27 March-3 April 2021. 8th-12th records.

Amur Falcon Falco amurensis ,© Sh. M Al Thani

Merlin Falco columbarius. A male Irkayya Farm 21 November 2020 (Sheikh M Al Thani); A male same location 19 March 2021 (G Farnell). 10th-11th records.

Merlin Falco columbarius, © Sh. M Al Thani

Horned Lark Eremophila alpestris. One juvenile/female bird, Irkayya Farm, 17-18 January 2021 (Sheikh M Al Thani, H Al Khulaifi, J van Duffelen). First record.

Horned Lark Eremophila alpestris, © H Al Khulaifi

Bimaculated lark Melanocorypha bimaculata, Up to 40 Irkayya Farm, 17 November 2020-5 March 2021 (Sheikh M Al Thani et al). Fifth record.

Calandra Lark, Melanocorypha calandra. Up to ten Irkayya Farm, 3 December 2020-5 March 2021 (G Farnell et al). Third record.

Eurasian Crag Martin, Ptyonoprogne rupestris. Six Doha Golf Club, 30 March 2020 (G Farnell); Five Ras Al Shindwee, 19 April 2021 (G Farnell, J van Duffelen). 15th-16th records.

Plain Leaf Warbler Phylloscopus neglectus. Two Rawdat, near Al Jumailiya, 22 January-6 February 2021 (G Farnell, S Tull et al. Fourth record.

Plain Leaf Warbler Phylloscopus neglectus, © Simon Tull

Grasshopper Warbler Locustella naevia. One heard calling Irkayya Lagoons, 26 March 2021 (G Farnell). Fourth record.

Common Blackbird Turdus merula. A female Irkayya Farm, 23 November 2020 (Sheikh M Al Thani). Fourth record.

Dusky Thrush Turdus eunomus. A first winter bird Bahwa City, 27 November 2015 (U Pandiyan). First record.

Dusky Thrush Turdus eunomus, © Uma Pandiyan

Black Bush Robin Cercotrichas podobe. One Rawdat near Al Jumailiya, 21-24 January 2021 (H Al Khulaifi, J van Duffelen). 13th record.

European Robin Erithacus rubecula. Two Shamal Park, 8 December 2020-15 January 2021 (J van Duffelen, Z AbdulRahman). Tenth record.

Thrush Nightingale Luscinia luscinia. One Sheraton Hotel, 25 September 2020 (C Pollard). 19th record.

White-crowned Wheatear Oenanthe leucopya. One juvenile shot Fuwairit, October 2020; a juvenile west coast, north of Umm Bab, 28 November 2020-6 February 2021 (S Tull, H Al Khulaifi, Sheikh M Al Thani, G Farnell; Third and fourth records.

White-crowned Wheatear (Oenanthe leucopya), © Gavin Farnell

Finsch’s Wheatear Oenanthe finschii. A male Azwair West Coast, 8 January 2021 (H Al Khulaifi); a female same location 16 January 2021 (H Al Khulaifi, Sheikh M Al Thani). Fifth-sixth records.

Caspian Stonechat Saxicola maurus hemprichii. One Irkayya Farm, 23 December 2020-5 January 2021 (Sheikh M Al Thani, M Al Baker). Tenth record.

Byzantine Stonechat Saxicola maurus variegatus. One Irkayya Farm, 16 February 2021 (Sheikh M Al Thani, M Al Baker). Fifth record.

Yellow-throated Sparrow Gymnoris xanthocollis. A male Shamal Park, 21 April 2021 (J van Duffelen). 14th record.

‘White-headed Wagtail’ Motacilla (flava) leucocephala. One Irkayya Farm, 19 March 2021 (G Farnell). First record.

‘White-headed Wagtail’ Motacilla (flava) leucocephala, © Gavin Farnell

Black-headed Bunting Emberiza melanocephala. One male Shamal Park, 10 April 2021 (G Farnell; Plate 14). Seventh record.

lack-headed Bunting Emberiza melanocephala, © Gavin Farnell

Records for H1, 2020

Crested Honey Buzzard Pernis ptilorhyncus  Both dark and pale forms, representing 5 individuals, were at Irkayya Farm between 21 December 2019 and 26 January 2020 (G Farnell, S Tull, Sh. M al Thani, H al Kulaifi, J van Duffelen). Another individual was at Education City, Doha on 26 January 2020 (P Domingos, Marco Halonen). A pale individual was at a residential compound in West Bay, Doha on 9 April 2020 (L Cross, D Cross). Fifth to eleventh records.

Black-Winged Kite Elanus caeruleus. Up to two birds were at Irkayya Farm 24-26 January 2020 (H al Kulaifi, J van Duffelen). One was confirmed as belonging to the race vociferous. Eleventh record.

Eurasian Griffon Vulture Gyps fulvus. A juvenile was found at Shamal after being brought down during a storm and was acquired by a private zoo. The bird was seen there by G Farnell and H al Kulaifi 13 April 2020. First record.

Hen Harrier Circus cyaneus A male at Irkayya Farm 30 January 2020 (S Hussain). Fourth record.

“Northern” Shikra Accipter (badius) conchroides One Shamal Park 17 April 2020 (G Farnell). Third record.

Steppe Buzzard Buteo Buteo vulpinus One Irkayya Farm 2 February 2020 (H al Kulaifi) Eighth record.

Steppe Eagle Aquila nipalensis. One discovered at the zoo holding the Griffon Vulture (G Farnell and H al Kulaifi) 17 April 2020. Fifth record.

Grey-Headed Swamphen Porphyrio porphyrio poliocephalus. One West Saliya, 14 March 2016 (S Tull).One Irkayya Lagoons, 4 April 2016 (J Van Duffelen). Fourth and fifth records.

Spur-Winged Lapwing Vanellus spinosus One at West Saliyaon 17 March2020(Sh. M al Thani) , with three at the same location on 10 April (G Farnell) Two were on the Shamal Coast 17 April (G Farnell). Ninth record.

Caspian Plover Charadrius asiaticus A summer plumage bird, injured, Irkayya Farm 2 to 21 May 2020 (Sh. M al Thani, J van Duffelen, G Farnell, S Tull). Twentieth record.

Greater-Spotted Cuckoo Clamador glandarius. An individual was shot by hunters near Messaieed, 10 March 2020. Fifth record.

Ashy/Black Drongo. Edolius macrocercus  / E. leucophaeus. Juvenile. Probably Ashy Drongo although identification under discussion. Residential compound backing onto Doha Golf Course, 19-20 February (G Farnell).

Black-Throated Thrush Turdus atrogularis Sub-adult male Shamal Park 17 February 2020 (G Farnell). Fourth record.

European Robin Erithacus rubecula Single bird caught in mist nets Irkayya Lagoons 21 February 2020 (B Cramer) Ninth record.

Semi-Collared Flycatcher Ficedula semitorquata Two males farm near Rawdat al Ajuz 24 March 2020 (G Farnell). One male Doha Golf Course 31 March 2020 (G Farnell). Two males and one female, farm near Abu Thaylah 1 April 2020 (G Farnell, H al Kulaifi). One female Wakra 2 April 2020 (J van Duffelen). One male farm near Al Numan 5 April 2020 (G Farnell).  One Male 17 April 2020 Shamal Park (G Farnell). Seventeenth record.

Richard’s Pipit Anthus richardi Up to three birds Irkayya Farm 21 to 29 February 2020 (G Farnell, S Tull). Ninth record.

Wood Warbler Phylloscopus sibilatrix A single bird Irkayya Farm 29 April 2017 (J Hardacre, G Saunders). First record

Purple Sunbird Cinnyris asiaticus  One male Al Meshaf 31 January 2020 (A Thomas). A male was at Doha North Sewage Farm 8 February 2020 (H al Kulaifi). First record.

Records for H2, 2019

Greater White-Fronted Goose Anser albifrons. Three at an undisclosed location, 17 November 2019. Tenth record. 

Pied Cuckoo Oxylophus jacobinus. A male and female Irrikaya farm, 6 November-late December 2019 (H Al Khulaifi, Sh. M Al Thani, S Tull, G Farnell et al). Second record. 

Stock Dove Columba oenas. One Irrikaya farm, 3 December 2019 (Sh. M Al Thani). First record

Lesser Flamingo Phoeniconaias minor. A single bird Al Shamal, 3 December 2013. (Only recently brought to the attention of QBRC) First record

Spur-winged Lapwing Vanellus spinosus. Four (including one juvenile) West Saliya lagoons, 27 September 2019 with two birds at nearby Abu Nakhla the following day (D Adams, D Sanders). Eighth record. 

White-tailed Lapwing Vanellus leucurus. One at Al Khor mangroves, 1 November 2019 (M Halonen). Twentieth record. 

Eurasian Bittern Botaurus stellaris. A single bird Irrikaya farm lagoons, 1 November 2019 (J Mohanen). Ninth record. 

European Honey Buzzard Pernis apivorus. A single pale form bird Irrikaya farm, 24 November 2019 (Sh. Mohamed Al Thani). Eighth record. 

Crested Honey Buzzard Pernis ptilorhyncus. Two birds Al Aamriya, 9 December 2019 (H Al Khulaifi); an adult male Irrikaya farm, 31 December 2019 (Z Abdul Rahman). Sixth and seventh records. 

Short-toed Snake Eagle Circaetus gallicus. Single birds various locations, mid- October to mid-December 2019 (Sh. M Al Thani, H Al Khulaifi). Rare but regular visitor. 

Black-eared Kite Milvus (migrans) lineatus. A juvenile Irrikaya farm, 12 October 2019 (S Tull). Twenty first record. 

Northern Steppe Buzzard Buteo b. vulpinus. Two Irrikaya farm, 2 November-late December (G Farnell, S Tull, Sh. M Al Thani). Eighth and ninth records. 

Amur Falcon Falco amurensis. A single female/1cy bird Irrikaya farm, 26 November 2019 (Sh. M Al Thani). Seventh record. 

Yellow-browed Warbler Phylloscopus inornatus. One Al Shamal park, 11 October 2019 (S Tull, G Farnell). Fourth record. 

Black-throated Thrush Turdus atrogularis. An adult male Irrikaya farm, 14 November 2019 (S Abdullah). Fifth record. 

White-crowned Wheatear Oenanthe (leucopyga) leucopyga. One Irrikaya farm, 22 December 2019 (Z AbdulRahman). Third record. 

Masked Wagtail Motacilla (alba) personata. One Al Shamal park, 11 October 2019 (G Farnell, S Tull). Fifth record. 

Richard’s Pipit Anthus richardi. One Irrikaya farm, 9 Noveember 2019 (G Farnell). Eighth record. 

Yellow-Throated Sparrow Gymnoris xanthocollis.Two Abu Dhalouf park, 6 September 2019 (G Farnell). Twelfth record.

Records for H1, 2019

Intermediate Egret Egretta intermedia. A single bird was at West Saliya lagoons on 8th March 2019 (S Tull, G Farnell). Second record, last recorded 2014. 

European Honey Buzzard Pernis apivorus. A sub-adult male with some characteristics suggesting a hybrid European-Crested Honey Buzzard was seen at Shahiniya on 30 April 2019 (Sk. M al Thani). Seventh record.

Black-winged Kite Elanus caerulus. An individual belonging to subsp. vociferous was observed at Irkayya Farm on 18th May 2019 (D Adams). Eleventh record.

Black Kite Milvus migrans. Single bird seen at Shamal Park 17th May 2019 (G Farnell). Twentieth record.

Little Crake Porzana parva. Up to three individuals were at West Saliya lagoons from 9th March to 5 April (G Farnell, S Tull, J van Duffelen, Sk M al Thani and others). Sixth record, last recorded 2013.

Baillon’s Crake Porzana pusilla. A single bird was at West Saliya lagoons 10th to 12th March 2019 (G Farnell, J van Duffelen, Sk . M al Thani). Fourth record.

Grey-Headed Swamphen Porphyrio porphyrio poliocephalus. A single bird was at Irkayya Lagoons on 22nd May (J van Duffelen). Fourth record.

Greater Painted-Snipe Rostratula benghalensis. An adult female was discovered at Irkayya Lagoons 3th May and was still present on 10th May (D Adams, S Tull, G Farnell, J van Duffelen). First record

Spur-Winged Lapwing Vanellus spinosus. Two birds were found together at West Saliya Lagoons on 1 March (G Farnell, S Tull). Seventh record. 

White-Tailed Lapwing Vanellus leucurus. A single bird was at Irkayya Farm on 1 Feb (J Mohanen).

Caspian Plover Charadrius asiaticus. A summer plumage bird was at Irkayya Farm on 30th April (S Parappanangadi). Nineteenth record.

Pied Kingfisher Ceryle rudis. A single bird was at al Khor on 23 March (G Saunders). Fifteenth record.

Calandra Lark Melanocorypha calandra. A flock of at least 40 birds was at Irkayya Farm from 16-22 February 2019 (G Farnell, S Tull). Second record. 

European Robin Erithacus rubecula. The species was present at Irkayya Farm (D Saunders, G Saunders, Vishnu). 1st-29th March. Seventh record.

Black Scrub Robin Cercotrichas podobe.  An individual was at Irkayya Farm on 10th May (Sk . M al Thani). Twelfth record.

Thrush Nightingale Luscinia luscinia. A single bird was at al Shamal Park on 26 April (G Farnell). Seventeenth record.

Semi-collared Flycatcher Ficedula semitorquata. A female was at al Shamal Park on 26 April (G Farnell). Sixteenth record.

Yellow-Throated Sparrow Gymnoris xanthocollis. Two birds were at Abu Dhalouf Park 22-29 March (G Farnell). Eleventh record.