birdwatching blogs

Sorbulak. White-headed Duck.

2012-07-28 | Askar Isabekov

Trip with Gennady Dyakin and Andrei Kovalenko. The main event of a trip to Sorbulak was the watching of White-headed Ducks. Andrei guesses the nesting of this Ducks on one of the overgrown with reeds lakes of Sorbulak system. We watched several white-headed adult males (two of whom were still with blue bills), and about 20 juvenile Ducks which were quite non-timid but even curious. Juvenile Ducks not hid from us but circling between cane islands floated us closer and closer, therefore we made as good photos as it was possible. Ducks floated together with different ages Black-necked Grebes which were at least two dozen birds. In addition to White-headed Ducks need to note the large flocks of Great White Pelicans, rare Curlew Sandpipers still with parts of old rusty feathers, even more rare Sanderlings, and Ruddy Turnstones. [...... read more ]

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Kimasar gorge. Ile Alatau National Park.

2012-07-22 | Askar Isabekov

On river’s cascades I observed the Blue Whistling Thrush , but in spruce forest the Songar Tit. [...... read more ]

Kimasar gorge. Ile Alatau National Park.

2012-07-15 | Askar Isabekov

The weather at the bottom of the gorge was sunny but Furmanovka peak all day was in the clouds, so almost total of our climbing was in the fog and accordingly in the cold and damp. In after-dinner time the wind dispersed the clouds; the sun came out and the air immediately warmed up. At first only Nutcrackers were visible (Kimasar is the place where Nutcrackers are guaranteed observed in Almaty vicinity). At the foot of Furmanovka I watched soaring and rolling Ravens, and the flock (10-15 birds) of loud screaming Red Crossbills in the spruce forest. At Furmanovka in the fog I watched the somewhat Brown Accentors and Tree Pipits, the Wren (which I always notice at the same little spruce-tree), the pair of White-winged Grosbeaks, and family of Stoats. Pipits and Accentors were bringing the insects to somewhere over the rock. Also two Red-billed Choughs flew back and forth in the fog. After fog dispersion I noticed Carrion Crows, Golden Eagle, and the flock of Snowcocks. I hurried down to [...... read more ]

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Almaty, Samal.

2012-07-09 | Askar Isabekov

Fledgling Scops Owl all day perched in the crown of chestnut-tree near my door. [...... read more ]

Summer house. Karasai region, Almaty oblast.

2012-07-08 | Askar Isabekov

The mass raids of Rosy Starlings to summer houses began. In roadside elm thickets I noticed the singing Golden Oriole. [...... read more ]

Almaty, Samal.

2012-07-07 | Askar Isabekov

At night I saw fledgling Scops Owl fed by the adult male. [...... read more ]

Kimasar gorge. Ile-Alatau National park.

2012-07-06 | Askar Isabekov

In the bottom inhabited part of gorge I ran into the Blue Whistling Thrush what means the lucky day. But I didn’t see other birds excepting several Common Rosefinches and one Mistle Thrush. [...... read more ]

rare birds records

Greater Scaup (Aythya marila)

© Askar Isabekov
Sorbulak lake system. Almaty oblast.

First photo of rare wintering species in Sorbulak, and generelly in SE Kazakhstan. Before this record male and female were observed in flock of Tufted Ducks at February 2nd, 2003; and single bird at Jabuary 18th, February 21st, and March 13th of 2004 (Belyalov, Karpov 2012).

Dunnock (Prunella modularis)

© Alexandr Belyaev
Almaty region, g. Taldykorgan

Second record of Dunncock in South-Easten Kazkahstan. Only one record for region was known before: at January 10, 1993 in northern foothills of Zailisky Alatau ridge, in sandthorn thickets of Chilik river four Dunncocks were recorded (Губин, 2002).

Pygmy Cormorant (Phalacrocorax pygmaeus)

© Askar Isabekov
Sorbulak lake system. Almaty oblast.

First winter record in Sorbulak lakes. Only spring records are known before this one: May 30, 1995 (Erokhov, 2002), April 11, 1999 (Grachev, 2002), and April 23, 2017 (Dyakin, In winter time Pygmy Cormorant is not rare in Chardara reservoir (Erokhov et al, 2006; Kovalenko, Kravchenko, 2007; Kovalenko, Karpov, 2008); recent years was observed in Taraz (Kolbintsev, 2009; M.Nukusbekov,; A.Balykin,, in foothill part of Chu river valley (Belyalov, Karpov, 2009), one specimen was photographed at December 23, 2017 in Taldykurgan vicinity (A.Belyaev,

Black Kite (Milvus migrans)

© Malik Nukusbekov
Ertai. Zhambyl oblast.

Rare observation of Black Kite in Kazakhstan in winter time. Previously in winter time recorded in Almaty oblast (Karpov, Belyalov, 2009; Berezovikov, 2014; S.Shmygalev,; in Mangyshlak (Yasko, 2017); and in Chardara (A.Kovalenko,

Березовиков Н.Н. 2014. Зимняя встреча черноухого коршуна Milvus migrans lineatus в городе Алматы // Рус. орнитол. журн. 23 (1082): 3957.
Карпов Ф.Ф., Белялов О.В. 2009. О зимней встрече чёрного коршуна в Алматинской области // Selevinia: 234.
Ясько А.О. 2017. Орнитологические наблюдения в городе Актау // Рус. орнитол. журн. 26 (1399): 382-394.

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Big Year 2018

supported by

1. Askar Isabekov (123)
2. Boris Gubin (101)
3. Alexandr Belyaev (76)
4. Alexandr Katuncev (71)
5. Anna Yasko (64)


unidentified birds


Сергей Л. Волков: Да я и не признал барбарис. Спасибо.


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Сергей Силантьев: Даже визуальное сравнение с большим крохалем на снимке говорит о том, что птица не маленькая...Кряква.


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more unidentified birds...