30 Mar 2007

Oriental Prat.

Oriental PRATINCOLE, of course. There were several on a dried pond today on the Mai Po access road. Taken at about 20metres, 600mm lens, 2x converter, ID Mk II

29 Mar 2007

Deserves Another....... !

We're going on the boat outing to Po Toi island this Sunday, April Fools that we are. Hong Kong may be one of the best places in the world to see Aleutian Tern. It was first noted by Peter Kennerley and others on a boat trip to the West Lamma channel here in August 1992. The terns breed on the Aleutian Islands which run southwest in a line across the northern pacific from Alaska. A few specimens were collected near the Phillippines in the 1980s but the pacific wintering grounds of this species have remained largely a mystery. There are more recent records from Singapore and Indonesia

They're more commonly seen in HK in Autumn (August/September) than spring, but we might get lucky this Sunday. If you don't go, you'll never know !

26 Mar 2007

Fork-tailed Sunbirds

March is the month in Hong Kong when our "Red Hot Poker" * trees are in blossom. Apart from the blossoms the trees are quite bare, so it is the best chance to see and photograph our resident sunbirds. These pictures were taken in Tai Po Kau Nature Reserve, but Fork-tailed Sunbirds are widespread.

male Forktailed Sunbird

female Forktailed Sunbird

* For any tree fans who may have dropped in : this tree is actually Erythrina speciosa , native to South America. Did you know Forktailed Sunbirds were first recorded in Hongkong in 1959 ?

25 Mar 2007

Big Bird Race 2007

Completed the 24th Hong kong WWF "Big Bird Race" yesterday as a "Jebsen Holidays Wandering Tattler".

Many Thanks to Jebsen for our Team sponsorship. They sponsored TWO teams in this years' race! The Tattlers were Gavin Cooper (Captain), Andrew Young, Tim Woodward and Roger Muscroft. And me.

We saw (or heard) 157 species, which put us third, the winners were the "Professionals" who scored 162, and won the most important prize, the one for raising the most money.

Our first birds were at 1700hrs on Friday evening on Pond 77 at Tsim Bei Tsui. We had a nice breeding plumage Saunders's Gull there, so we were off to a good start.

The 157th bird was Chinese Spotbill on pond 8 at Mai Po Nature Reserve.

Here's a picture of Saunders's Gull I took a few days ago.