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irdwatching
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"Deep South" Red Sea pelagic and scuba tour (Egypt).

After a cancellation/re-scheduling of our forthcoming dragonfly tour we looked immediatelly for a "working-holiday" and joined Bela Nasfay to a liveaboard safari to visit the southern egyptian Red Sea. Bela is a doyen of the hungarian scuba divers, also author for hundreds of scuba articles and winner of innumerable underwater competitions, so it was a real priviledge to share a cabin with him, which gave us great opportunity for discussions. He is definitely one of the most helpful person I have ever met, who advised me to became a scuba freak since the beginning. We had several other scuba "cream of the cream" photographers onboard, incl. Laszlo Elod and Daniel Selmeczi, both being outstanding artists. Our boat, the M/S Andromeda give us a full comfort, definitely this is one of the most luxurious boat ever launched on the Red Sea. Last year I did a tour with its sibling, M/S Cassiopea and I had some excelent pelagic birding as well when I observed great numbers of Sooty Falcons and Tropicbirds on some very remote islands, close to the Sudanese border, so this year I took my long lenses as well and used the opportunity to re-visit those places.

All in all, apart from my serious ear-problems, I had a great time, observed 100+ Sooty Falcons, Tropicbirds, all the usual Gulls and Terns, and we also had touching encounters with Risso's and Bottle-nosed Dolphins, Tiger- and Oceanic White-tip Sharks, Turtles and others. Being a rare destination for birders and scuba divers, I present a bit longer selection of pictures here, enjoy!
12 August, 2009

Our boat, the M/S Andromeda, one of the most luxurious boat on the Red Sea, which cruising the Egyptian and Sudanese waters along with her sibling, M/S Cassiopea.

Our Andromeda from the water © Bela Nasfay.


Divers in zodiak en route to a nearby reef.


Bela Nasfay, doyen of the Hungarian scuba community.
© Laszlo Elod


Bela, working underwater.


Bottle-nosed Dolphin.


Risso's Dolphin. The only beakless dolphin on Egyptian waters. A large, rarely seen species, we have seen about 15 in a group, mixed with Bottle-nosed.


An almost mother-sized calf of Bottle-noised Dolhin, curiously chased us around several times. © Bela Nasfay.


Oceanic White-tip Shark, the famous and most-wanted "longimanus". We have got three just bellow our boat where we enjoyed an hourly dive with them. We also got two Tiger Sharks near the infamous Elphinston-reef, a very rare scuba experience in Egypt. © Bela Nasfay.


One of the three Oceanic White-tip Sharks bellow our boat, sniffling our divers around.


Oceanic White-tip Shark, escorted with symbiotic Pilotfish.


Oceanic White-tip Shark. She was really close sometimes!

Hawkbill Turtle, a common species in Egypt, with Laci Elod in the background.© Béla Násfay.


Sooty Falcon. Last year I discovered a colony of 100+ on a remote island of the Egyptian Red Sea, which give me a force to return back and take some better pictures. Thanks God, the colony is still thriving...


Sooty Falcon.

Eleonora's Falcon. I just inserted this picture here to make a comparison with Sooty. This picture was taken with my good friend, Adam Farago on his recent tour to Vis Island, the only viable population of Croatia. Adam also a great bird artist, please check his website here!


Sooty Falcon.


Brown Bobby. A common bird on the deep-south' waters of Egypt.

Brown Bobbies.


White-eyed Gull. A common Red Sea endemic. Its close relative, the Sooty Gull also widespread and easy to see.

Bridled Tern. Other terns, inculding Sooty, White-cheeked, Caspian, Lesser-crested, etc. are also widespread on these waters.


Lesser-crested Tern.


Red-billed Tropicbird, considered to be a mega-rarity in Egypt, however there is a well-viable and permanent population on the open waters of the southern egyptian Red Sea. I have seen them all on my visits earlier too, indeed.

Sunset on the Egyptian coast, close to Ras Banas peninsula.

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Upcoming trips & Expeditions

Slovenia-Croatia birding (14-23 June, 2022)

Hungarian butterfly circle (29, June - 07 July, 2022)

The Danube Clouded Yellow and her friends (Transylvania butterfly special; 2x July trips, 2022)

Slovenia butterflying (21 - 28 July, 2022)

Montenegro butterflying (10 - 18 Aug., 2022)

Late summer birding trip (Hungary, 21-31 Aug., 2022)

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