Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Cover page

Just made a new cover page for this blog this afternoon, 29 Jan'14.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Photoshoot session with a young Yellow-vented Bulbul

Yellow-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus goiavier) - Merbah Kapur (Malay)
Family: Pycnonotidae (Bulbul family)

 Today the weather is cloudy and the air is rather cold with light breeze.  Between Zone F and Zone C I saw a young Yellow-vented bulbul having a rest on a short twig and looking cold.  It was initially unaware of me as I slowly approached to photoshoot it.  It seemed oblivious to the clicking sounds of the camera and despite seeing me moving towards her slowly she gave me more poses.  She gave me an excellent opportunity to be close and personal.  Here's more revealing shots of the young bulbul....

Monday, January 27, 2014

The Emerald Dove

Emerald Dove (Chalcophaps indica) - 'Punai Tanah' in Malay, to mean ground pigeon.
Family : Columbidae - Pigeon family
Today I have been exceptionally lucky.  For many years I have seen the 'Punai Tanah' (Malay) flying low and fast at the park but could not take a picture of it.  Today it came out of the dim forest cover and gave me a glimpse of its eyes above which was a white stripe, red bill and beautiful jade green wings.  I know that they are nesting at the park especially at the preserved forest area around the Provinsi Rattan near Zone I.  It's presence has given me a new hope that the forest ecology at the park is gradually being rehabilated.

Photo journal - 26 January, 2014

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Photoshoot session with the Brown-throated Sunbird

Brown-throated sunbird - Anthreptes malacensis borneensis

 Had an excellent photoshoot session with a pair of Brown-throated sunbird this morning. They posed for me while I was at Zone I and Botanic Island Two at around 8 am.  They were flying vigorously moving between the leaves and branches apparently hunting for small caterpillars.  This morning was one of the rare moments when they gave me a chance to shoot them side by side.  They make my morning!

Female Brown-throated sunbird

Sunbirds are very active and small birds and therefore pose a challenge to photograph.

The male displays the reason for its name.

A pair feeding on caterpillars

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Flash floods in January

The start of the Kambatik stream, swelling up from two tributaries

Between Zone C and F
The rains have not stopped since dawn this morning.  A heavy rain  lasting half a day could easily result in flash floods at the park.  But the flooding is only confined to very low lying areas beside the stream.  My estimate of the areas affected by the flooding covers only less than 5 % of the total park area. I am looking at it the positive way.  Flash floods create a lot of interest.  It is a view that do not happen every day and when it comes it elicits feelings of adventure, anxiety and thrill but all for a short while because once the rains stop the flooding subsides very quickly.  Also the flooding cleans up any debris etc along the stream .  The flood water seems to be murky today due to some earthworks done by one landowner  slightly up the tributary.  The eroded topsoil brought by the surface runoff water normally create an even dressing  of silt once the flood disappears.  Here are some images of the floods from the start of the stream moving downstream...
Zone D

Between Zone D and F
Note : All images above taken on 22 Jan'14

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Walkabout in the rain

 It has been raining for half of the day and the drizzle never seems to stop.  There's not much outside activity that could be done today.  So I had a walkabout in the rain to photograph any interesting  subjects.  A bird, a group of plants, the stream overflowing and the bright pink colours of the Heliconia chartaceae 'Sexy Pink' has boosted morale somewhat.....

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Spiderhunter pollinating the Sexy Pink

Clumps of Heliconia chartacea 'Sexy Pink' planted at Heliconia Valley

 The many clumps of Heliconia chartacea 'Sexy Pink' are doing well at the Heliconia Valley area at Zone D.  Often times the Little Spiderhunter would visit the inflorescences to hunt for nectar and small insects especially tiny ants that are attracted by the sweet nectar.  When the Spiderhunter pushes its beak into the flower to look for nectar it is also doing another very important function i.e. pollinating.  The pendulous inflorescence have very colourful pink bracts which are basically false flowers.

Little Spiderhunter thrushes its beak into the flower to look for nectar.

Photo journal - 15 January,2014

The squirrels come marching in

 With the end of year seasonal fruits dwindling in the nearby forests, the squirrels come marching in to the park.  Here they get to gorge the oil palm fruits for free.  This is a minor problem as the presence of more oil palm smallholdings around the park have provided more choices for them to devour these fruits. The type of squirrels that come by are the plantain squirrels.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

A photoshoot session with the Magpie

Oriental Magpie-robin (Copsychus saularis)
Family : Muscicapidae (Thrush family)

 The Oriental Magpie-robin is not an easy subject to get close with.  But today was exceptional.  I had a good photoshoot session with this melodious bird.  She was partly drenched and that made her less eager to fly away, not till the session was over.  Her hairs were ruffled and at one moment her eyes were fixed on me.  Gotcha!! Here's some images for the remembrance.

Monday, January 13, 2014

The Brown Barbet

 Today is the first time I encountered the Brown Barbet ( Calorhampus fuliginosus).  Two pairs of it were hunting for insects and the fruits of the Eugenia oleina.  It was a bit drizzly and they perched on twigs and branches of a dead tree at Zone C nearby the Jackfruit and Eugenia trees. I include this bird among the small to medium-sized birds at the park.  What was obvious to me was the broad bill and stout body of the barbet.  Then I could clearly see the red feet. I noticed too that the underparts are a pale brown to grey from the neck to breast.  The upperpart of the body is brown.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Up-close and personal with the tailor

Perenjak Kelapu (Malay) or Red-headed Tailorbird.

 The Red-headed Tailorbird is a super active tiny creature.  It likes to hop from branch to branch in swift movements and thus very difficult to take a picture .  However today I was a bit fortunate because a pair of these vocal birds were too busy foraging for insects that they forget my presence just yards away from them.  These birds are among the tiniest birds in the park, approximately 4 inches long.