Monday, September 24, 2007

Olive-backed Sunbird

Today, while waiting for an appointment in Singapore, I was able to do a little birding in an enclosed courtyard with one tree growing in it. In that tree was a very active male Olive-backed Sunbird finding something to eat in the blossoms. Whatever else happens in a day, when a bird like that shows up, it's a good day.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Swift habitat in Jakarta

Unfortunately, I can't place a photo of a Palm Swift here (they were too swift for me), but I was watching them from my hotel window today here in Jakarta, and then from below the palm trees in this photo. They were constantly flying near the trees, and even between the fronds, but I never actually saw them land. I think they were of the same species (Asian Palm Swift) that I saw in Malaysia last year. There is precious little habitat suitable for birds in this very crowded city, so I was pleased to find about six different species in the hotel garden.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Eurasian Tree Sparrow

Now I'm in Manila in the Philippines, and still not seeing many birds. Of course, in a crowded, noisy place such as this, that's not surprising. However, through the bus window yesterday I did enjoy a brief encounter with these Eurasian Tree Sparrows that landed in a flurry on a rooftop beside the street. At a glance, they could easily be mistaken for the House Sparrows that are common in all the towns of the U.S.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Egrets in Hong Kong

Well, I'm in Hong Kong again, and so far have not seen many birds except a Black Kite scavenging tidbits from the surface of the water in the harbor. The best views once again are on the murals in the lobby of the Kowloon Shangri La Hotel. This flock of stylized egrets probably represent Chinese Egrets, and I hope to see some through the bus window as I travel around in various Asian cities during the next two weeks. That will be about my only chance for any birding on this trip.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Barn Swallow in flight

I'm still trying to find a way to photograph or video the spectacle of hundreds of thousands of Barn Swallows going down into the cornfield to roost for the night. The size of the flock, the darkness of the sky, and the distance to their chosen roost site all conspire to make it very challenging. Anyway, at the same time my mind is being "boggled" by the numbers, I enjoy the close encounters with the individuals who are zooming just overhead as they catch a few more bugs in the fading light.