Monday, June 20, 2011

Panti's Green Broadbills!

17th & 19 June

The Green Broadbills are probably the most elusive among all the other broadbills in Panti. They are not rare as their calls are always heard, but they seldom venture into the open along the main bunker trail. So when I chanced upon a couple calling endlessly for my attention shortly before the Swamp. I totally forgot the original plan of setting up hide for a super rare bird of Panti, not the midget Banded Pitta, but something BIG!

Green Broadbill (Calyptomena viridis)
Takau Hijau * ミドリヒロハ  * Mỏ rộng xồm
Eurylaime émeraudekosmatec smaragdovýзелёная калиптоменаนกเขียวปากงุ้ม
Smaragdbreitrachen * SmaragdbrednæbEurilaimo Verde

The male plumage colors just don't look like something from the real world, bright florousence green and easily shift its shade makes it a perfect natural camouflage to Panti's forest. And because of that when it perched on different location over a short period i see all my imgs have different color tone on its feather. Time to go for more tutorial in pnotoshop i guess! 

I have seen this species in 2009 but this was the only time i managed to get some closer shots.

I can't deny the fact that the recent sighting of the Banded Pittas have caused some mad rush to Panti, but the recent rise in traffic was mainly due to the emergence of the Pantiwood's Star - the ODKF, in the same old spot which i always refer to as "The OldTown". 

If there is a built-in 'phtographed-meter' in these pair of ODKFs, I am quite sure it would read more than one million by now. Superbly friendly and alway ready to pose for your MLU shots. There were times where I actually 'talk' to the bird "Wait, just five more low ISO shots before you go!" to get the "Huh?" look!

Oriental Dwarf Kingfisher (Ceyx erithacus)

And i have already accepted two wagers from friends on "Let's see if my lizard is longer than yours this year!" - loser pay for Bak Kut Teh of Sedili! So pray for me!

Yellow-bellied Bulbul (Alophoixus phaeocephalus

Cream-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus simplex)

Dark-throated Oriole (Oriolus xanthonotus)

And this is probably what i hate too, water in the ears after shower,

Buff-vented Bulbul (Iole charlottae)

I alway feel 'sympatic' to the Red-bearded Bee-eaters which i have reported in my earlier entry. The adults are often seen around the spot seemingly looking for their three missing chicks! :(

Red-bearded Bee-eater (Nyctyornis amictus)

OK, one more look of the cheerful Pantiwood's star before i start weeping for the RBBEs!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Panti where got Banded Pitta? :))))

I have shot the Banded Pitta twice in the past, but either the head was fully blocked or the image was so blur which makes it look more like the chick of Ayam Kampung than anything else! Many times I was frowned at when the subject of its sighting was brought up in the discussion, and what follow was usually "ARE YOU SURE???"

Situation turned around slightly when when a pair were spotted 100m into the trail barely 20' away in one of the birding trips with my friends a few months ago. 

But for an hour we couldn't get a good shot due to thick undergrowth. However it was the moment of truth for me as one of my friends patted me on my shoulder and said "I believe in you now!" (Sobs...sobs.....)

Banded Pittas are not that rare in Panti. According to my observation in the past, they occur in  many locations but mostly deep in the forest/side trails. Occasionally they do venture very near to the Main Bunker Trail, but they are not as habitual as the Mysia Rail Babbler, i.e. if you see them (usually in pair -male/female) in one spot just don't hope to see them around the same spot the next day.

Extremely shy and getting a good shot is a real PITA (Oops!), as they like to move around quickly in the canopy of thick undergrowth. So you either run out of shutter speed  due to lack of light or out of breath chasing them in the wood. I have missed capturing their images at least 5 times despite they were just skipping cheekily around me barely 10' away.

"WUI! BAND BAND BANDED....P.... I.... T... T... AAAAAA!", shouted my Sifu!

So in Panti today and when one my friends gave me a loud yell 100m away, I probably dashed faster than Carl Lewis, with full gear on my shoulder forgetting I have not fully recovered from my illness. 9.8s later I reached the spot and told him if it was a joke I would probably kill him with my new Gitzo tripod! But it was all big smiles from all of us seconds later as the Banded Pitta made a brisk appearance in a well-lit patch of the ground, grinning at us almost like "Haha! See if any of you fools can get me this time!".   

And after one hour of seek-and-hide with the PITA, finally I managed to get some improvement shots and video recording of the Banded Pitta of Panti! Phew! I was thrilled naturally and suddenly the pain of my stomach cramp that tortured me for the last few weeks seemed to have gone suddenly and forever!

For once, I actually like a bird's name in chinese, Banded Pitta is actually 
called "Blue-tailed-eight-colored Pitta!" Make sense to me!

Banded Pitta (Pitta guajana)
Burung Pacat Berjalur * 蓝尾八色鸫キマユシマヤイロチョウ
Brève azurine * pita pásikaváСинехвостая питта * นกแต้วแล้วลาย
Blauschwanz-Pitta * Gyldenbrynet PittaPita Barrada

And some of the pics taken on both Saturday and Sunday. I am still excited with my Nikon D5100 so all imgs were captured with it, with 500mm VR F4 TC1.4.

 Crested Serpent-Eagle (Spilornis cheela)

Buff-necked Woodpecker (Meiglyptes tukki)

Oriental Dwarf Kingfisher (Ceyx erithacus)

Rufous-collared Kingfisher (Actenoides concretus)

White-bellied Woodpecker (Dryocopus javensis)

Scarlet-rumped Trogon (Harpactes duvaucelii)

And is this ID correct?  

Grey-rumped Treeswift (Hemiprocne longipennis) ?