Cinnamon Teal and American Golden Plover, Oualidia region, Morocco

A birding visit by GOMAC member Benoît Maire and 7 other birders to Oualidia region two days ago proved productive. The birding party managed to see a total of 70 different species including some rare birds:

  • An American Golden Plover (Pluvialis dominica) was seen and photographed at Zemamra some 27 Km inland from Oualidia (coordinates: 32.6306202, -8.7852207). This would be the 5th Moroccan record for the species if accepted by the MRBC.
  • A possible Cinnamon Teal (Spatula cyanoptera) was photographed at Oualidia saltpans. Comments welcome! This would be the first record for Morocco if accepted by the MRBC.

Update:

The Cinnamon Teal was accepted by the MRBC in its latest report (number 23). The report reads:

“First record for Morocco and also first record for the Western Palearctic (HBW Alive). The behavior (big ‘flight initiation distance’, ease in flight), the date and the place are a priori compatible with a wild origin. Also note that none of the major Moroccan wildlife parks own this species and it is not sold as an ornamental bird in Morocco.

The observed individual belongs to the northern migratory subspecies septentrionalium that breeds from southwestern Canada to Mexico and winters from the southern United States to northern Colombia”.

Première donnée pour le Maroc et première donnée pour le Paléarctique Occidental (HBW Alive). Le comportement (distance d’envol lointaine, aisance en vol), la date et le lieu sont a priori compatibles avec une origine sauvage. À noter également qu’aucun des grands parcs animaliers marocains ne détient cette espèce et qu’elle n’est pas vendue comme oiseau d’ornement au Maroc.

L’individu observé appartient à la sous-espèce migratrice septentrionalium qui niche du sud-ouest du Canada au Mexique et hiverne du sud des Etats-Unis au nord de la Colombie.

American Golden Plover / Pluvier bronzé (Pluvialis dominica), Zemamra, Morocco, 8 Oct. 2016 (Benoît Maire).
American Golden Plover / Pluvier bronzé (Pluvialis dominica), Zemamra, Morocco, 8 Oct. 2016 (Benoît Maire).
American Golden Plover / Pluvier bronzé (Pluvialis dominica), Zemamra, Morocco, 8 Oct. 2016 (Benoît Maire).
American Golden Plover / Pluvier bronzé (Pluvialis dominica), Zemamra, Morocco, 8 Oct. 2016 (Benoît Maire).
Cinnamon Teal / Sarcelle cannelle (Spatula cyanoptera), Oualidia, Morocco, 8 Oct. 2016 (Benoît Maire)
Cinnamon Teal / Sarcelle cannelle (Spatula cyanoptera), Oualidia, Morocco, 8 Oct. 2016 (Benoît Maire)
Cinnamon Teal / Sarcelle cannelle (Spatula cyanoptera), Oualidia, Morocco, 8 Oct. 2016 (Benoît Maire)
Cinnamon Teal / Sarcelle cannelle (Spatula cyanoptera), Oualidia, Morocco, 8 Oct. 2016 (Benoît Maire)

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