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Pakistan for Long-billed Bush-Warbler, June 2023 (1 Viewer)

pbjosh

missing the neotropics
Switzerland
A bit late with this one but at least I wrote a report.

Anyways, Andrew Spencer was wrapping up a long trip in Central Asia with a quick visit to Pakistan and the timing worked for me so off we went. We both loved it and it was honestly logistically quite an easy trip and the birding, food, and people were awesome.

A (typical for me) short, pictureless, but GPS / logistics focused trip report is now up on Cloudbirders:


Hopefully it helps someone out there :)
 
Interesting report. Back in 1997 on a trekking/climbing trip I found a long-billed bush warbler in the Hushe valley to the east of Skardu. The habitat it was in sounds identical, suggesting it may be more widespread but obviously hugely under reported.

Rob
 
I suspect this to be the case Rob but as well I guess it’s total population is probably not very large… hopefully though it gets found in more and more places.
 
An update for anybody interested, this year just a single singing male located in the Naltar Valley over the course of 4 days, with none in the "usual" weedy margins of potato fields (pic 1). The only bird found was at Josh's riverside location in a small area of sea buckthorn, berberis and wild rose (pic 2), which may soon be degraded or obliterated by nearby HEP construction. There was no sign of this bird on Jun 15th, it having presumably moved on after failing to attract a female.
There's clearly an urgent need for a proper comprehensive survey for this species. It would also be REALLY helpful if Cornell didn't include Gilgit-Baltistan as part of India, thereby discouraging Pakistani birders from submitting records from this region to ebird.
Big thanks to Josh for his excellent report!
 

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Fresh Update:

Just came back from a weeklong survey across almost every suitable habitat in Naltar valley. The survey was supported by OBC. The situation seems grim.
Found only one bird in the same riverside locale as mentioned above and that too not a singer. We surveyed Naltar, Bagrote and Kargah valleys. The weedy margined terraced field habitat is actually in excellent condition, perhaps better than the time of James Eaton's original visit but no sign of birds. These photos are from 4th and 5th July respectively.
 

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