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) ?


  1. wow, what a trip. as for me, am not so lucky with the banded.

  2. All those birds in one trip! Awesome. And the Pitta is just fantastic, well rewarded for your perseverance.

  3. All of your bird photographs are great to view and what a delight it must have been for you to view such a range of wonderful species~

  4. Wow! what a catch Paul, surely your stomach cramp must have been long gone...

  5. TQ Everyone!

    >Ari, feeling ,much better after the Pitta! :)

  6. These shots are not easy to capture,but you've seem to have mastered the art.
    Superb photography.

  7. Excellent post Paul with magnificent shots... I love the serpent-eagle a lot but all are wonderful birds and very ncie pictures!!

  8. It is wonderful to just look and look... your blog is so enjoyable... keep on!