Sunday, December 25, 2016

A breeding pair of Tiong

The female is checking the nest while the male scours the neighbourhood.
Location: Licuala Hill, Zone I
The Kambatik Park, Bintulu.

 This morning I saw a breeding pair of the Hill Myna bird, locally known as 'Tiong' close by their nest.  I was there around 9 in the morning and it seemed they have just said hello to the world.  They could have called it a lazy day as it rained heavily the previous night with a little  shower in the early part of the morning.  They were not really bothered with my presence and that allowed me to take more shots of them.  After spending a couple of minutes at their nesting tree they flew a short distance (50 - 60 meters)  to another tall tree to preen themselves.
The female bird shows how to enter the nest.

The male bird busy preening itself.

The female makes an early morning call.

A photo rendition of the scene.

Three in one encounter

Banded Woodpecker (Picus miniaceus) as seen through the jungles leaves and branches
Location: Licuala Hill, Kambatik Park, Bintulu.

When I heard a piercing short call over the park this morning I kept telling myself that the sound was most unfamiliar. So I started to collect my gear and ready for any encounter. I first rushed up the Cempedak Hill where the call kept pushing me moving uphill but cautiously. I didn't want the bird to see me too soon. The call was repeated again while I was just below the masses of leaves and branches of the Cempedak tree. In between the leaves I glimpsed of a bird somewhat holding on tightly to a branch in an upright position. The moment I held the camera to have a good shot the bird instantly took off. Hard luck. About half an hour later, I heard the call coming from the Licuala Hill area. Quickly I set foot ready for another attempt. Upon reaching Licuala Hill the very piercing call which sounded like a baby cry or a cat's scream was not heard again. So I thought I must have lost the bird and started to look around for other interesting objects. At Licuala Hill I stumbled upon a beautiful jungle tree in flowering. For the record this tree is not as mature as the one at Botanic Island One. But the flowers are the same. For many years now I have not been able to identify this jungle species. While kept busy admiring the yellow jungle flowers, the call broke the silence of the jungle and this time I thought it came from just above me. I moved position and took a few shots through the trees. I then moved slowly out of the jungle into the open in order to have a better view of the bird. There it was perching on one of the tallest dead tree of the neighborhood. I took several aims hoping one or two hit the target. Back on the computer desk I anxiously transferred the pictures and 'Yahoo!!' let the pictures do the talking. Shared below are the results of my Xmas morning birding session. It is a three in one Xmas gift. The Banded Woodpecker at the very top and below a pair of Brown Barbet.

Three in one capture - Banded Woodpecker at the top, and a pair of Brown Barbet below.

Brown Barbet (Calorhamphus fulinginosus)
Male of the species is above with black bill while female is below with pale grey or purple bill.

Banded Woodpecker at the tip of one of the tallest dead tree in the park, making a piercing call over the neighbourhood.

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

A colourful Trogon and what a lifer!

Scarlet-rumped Trogon or "Kesumba Puteri" (Malay)
 Today has been  most auspicious.  This morning was the first time in my life I encountered a Trogon.  It is really an amazing bird, very colourful and quite playful.. It was seen above me (about 3 meters)  at Provinsi Rattan, Zone I .   In the cool morning atmosphere I heard an unfamiliar call.  It sounded like Kir- rrrr. Within seconds I saw something orange moved infront  of me.  I remained still and the bird did not seem to be bothered with me.  Slowly I took the camera out of the bag and started to aim, before the bird took flight.  But no.  Surprisingly the bird wanted to 'play' with me.  It was moving about the branches above me and that afforded me many angles to shoot the bird.  It was gazing at me behind its shoulders and on one occassion turned around facing me straight with its sharp eyes.  Trogons are brighly coloured with a short, broad bill.  The tails look like as if  the feathers were square-cut. It has brown iris, with eyelid of cobalt blue.  I noticed its bill was blue.  Its head black with a nice orangish red breast.  It is a rare bird and is the first time for about more than 10 years staying at the park that I encountered it. What a lifer!.

The orangish red rump...or 'scarlet-rumped' is plainly seen just as well as the square-cut tail.  The bird was seen gazing curiously at me over its shoulders.

Harpactes duvaucelii ( Scarlet-rumped Trogon)
Seen at Kambatik Park, Bintulu..
Looking straight at me.