DAYS 2 – 8: Mirbat and surrounding area Mirbat is a coastal fishing town in southwestern Oman approximately 75Km east of Salalah and is perfectly placed to look for an exciting selection of both terrestrial and marine mammals. During the next seven days we will be explore the numerous open plains, dry wadis, rocky gorges and coastline for the seemingly abundant population of mammals that, with perseverance, can be found around the Mirbat area. The beauty of this tour is most of the sites that we visit are within just an hour of our base, so we have plenty of time to explore the area and rest during the day after late evenings looking for the tougher mammals. During the day we will visit some of the coastal lagoons for birds and open plains for ungulates before focusing again purely on mammals during the nocturnal hours. Highly sought after species that we will be trying hard to find include both the Caracal and Striped Hyena. These two species have been recorded regularly around the sites that we visit and our local guide’s knowledge of the area will be the key to our success. Aside from these two species, we will of course be searching for other exciting mammals like the Arabian Wolf and Honey Badger, both which tend to prefer the open ground and wadis in contrast to the specialist of the rocky slopes and a species that will also be high on our target list, the Blanford’s Fox.
Sperm Whale and Common Dolphin by Lars Petersson
One day we will take a boat trip to look for cetaceans and seabirds. The coast here can be very productive for whales and dolphins and we hope to find Sperm Whale and Spinner Dolphins as well as other scarcer species like False Killer Whale. Not all our cetacean watching will be done from a boat as watching from the nearby cliffs along the coast can produce sightings of more coastal species like the Indian Ocean Humpback Dolphin. Finally, although our key focus will be on mammals, we will of course see a great selection of birds both when at sea and exploring the coastal bays. Species such as the rare Jouanin’s Petrel at sea and the impressive Crab Plover in the coastal bays will both be birds that we will take a special effort to try and find. Overall, this is a great one base holiday in a great country with a pleasant climate, good food and accommodation and a huge number of exciting mammals and birds to look for! Overnight Mirbat Hotel