13 Jan 2014

Barred Cuckoo Dove at KFBG

Another "Twitch" for a bird I hadn't seen in Hong Kong or China before, Barred Cuckoo Dove (Macropygia unchall).
Barred Cuckoo Dove (Macropygia unchall)
The southeast China race is minor and what with twentieth century forest destruction and the secretive habits of this species, it is very hard to find.
Barred Cuckoo Dove (Macropygia unchall)
Hong Kong's fifth or sixth record, - Thanks then to a visitor from Singapore who (I'm told) first spotted it. It had been around for a few days before we visited on Friday 10th January.

It reminded me that - sometime in the 1980s - it was birding visitors from Japan who put Japanese Grosbeak on the Hong Kong "list". The birds were among some Yellow-billed (Chinese) Grosbeaks.
KFBG road sign

Kadoorie Farm and Botanic Garden was set up as an agricultural research centre in the 1950s by the Kadoorie brothers, millionaire Hong Kong philanthropists who had made their money owning a utility company. It's at the head of the Lam Tsuen Valley, Tai Po.

In the early 1960s there were many new migrant farmers from China who were set up with livestock and equipment by the Kadoorie Agricultural Aid Association.
The trees have matured and the habitat is pretty good, with concrete roads and paths about the area.

KFBG is now really about conservation and education, and they have some very capable people working there.

Last Friday KFBG's fruiting trees were attracting thrushes, too.
White's Thrush (Zoothera aurea)
And a final KFBG winter specialty -

Chestnut-bellied Rock Thrush (Monticola rufiventris)

Over the house yesterday, a pair (?) of Crested Serpent Eagles, calling away. Spring is in the air, almost.

Serpent Eagle (Spilornis cheela)

Serpent Eagle (Spilornis cheela)
And we're off on a trip, I have a couple of draft Hong Kong posts ready to put up, but things will be quiet here for a few weeks.


  1. A nice-looking bird with those wavy front markings, and so is the Rock-thrush. Enjoy your trip.

  2. Nice Whites Thrush. I have never photographed one, Ever.

  3. Wonderful photos of the cuckoo dove among the berries! Never thought it could be that photogenic before.