August, 2022

Retirement Age?

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The twin-island postcolonial paradise of Trinidad & Tobago celebrates its 60th anniversary of independence today, and as much as I am vehemently anti-nationalist I figured I’d draw some attention to this fact.

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Lady Luck’s Pendulum

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As we all know, birding is very much a lottery. Visiting the same place repeatedly delivers a different cast of characters each time. Such is nature. Late yesterday evening we took a walk along an often-traversed trail through the Main Ridge Forest Reserve here on Tobago.

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Guide to birding the Forgotten Road in the Djerdap National Park, Serbia

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That first field trip to Djerdap Gorge National Park, eight years ago, was made as a part of an ecotourism potential evaluation project. And in order to evaluate its potential, my agenda was to spend whole two days in the park and to produce the best possible evaluation based on that visit.

Plant Shop or Birding Hotspot?

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Test webinar 6/10 10am

Speaker: Test

General Interest Podcast Episodes for Birders

10,000 Birds

There are a number of podcasts dedicated to birding ( e.g. , American Birding Podcast and many others ), but many general-interest podcasts also feature episodes of interest to birders. Below are some fairly recent episodes that I have enjoyed and that may be of interest to others.

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The Secret Perfume of Birds: Uncovering the Science of Avian Scent–A Book Review

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Do Brown-headed Cowbirds really smell like freshly baked sugar cookies? Do Dark-eyed Juncos really smell like leaves and dirt or “ferns and Celestial Seasonings’ Country Peach Passion Tea? Do birds use odors and a sense of smell to communicate with each other?

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Birding in Costa Rica, August, 2022- News and Recommendations

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In the northern temperate zone, August is a time of hazy, lazy dog days, a month when you soak up that last bit of summer during outdoor picnics and shorebird chases.

North American Waders also Return

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Well, Kai Pflug has beaten me again. I had spent a couple of weeks vaguely contemplating the need to write about my first wetland trip of the winter migratory season. Meanwhile, Kai continues to crank out two or more posts each week.

Pied Oystercatcher eggs become chicks

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One of the pairs of Pied Oystercatchers on Cable Beach have hatched their eggs this week. There had been one egg in the nest scrape on July 25th and a second egg followed. This Tuesday I was expecting the eggs to start to hatch and they did just that.

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A Bird Presentation in Shanghai

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For some reason that I do not quite understand myself – given that I really rather dislike children and am not too positive about the rest of humanity either – I recently put up a little display of bird photos inside my Shanghai compound, which I share (as the only foreigner) with about 1700 Chinese.

Summer Days

White Paper Description

Is the project of the very best field guides in the world dead?!?

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I understood that my favourite, and in my opinion the very best field guide series in the world – Lynx & Birdlife International – is practically dead because of the high costs of developing a field guide and low sales during the pandemic.

Birding the Kruger Park (4): Letaba area

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Letaba is a largish rest camp in the North central part of the park. It is near a river, attracting some birds that like to eat wet food.

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Mistletoebird family

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Since I first told you of the Mistletoebird nest that was built in the bush close to our home there has been a lot of activity.

Return of the Waders

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Around this time of the year, the first few waders are back in Shanghai from their breeding grounds far further up north.

Test webinar 6/9/22 9:40am

Speaker: Aggregage

Some Chinese Pheasants

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Apparently, there is a traditional Chinese saying that seeing one pheasant in the wild is better than seeing ten other birds.

Brush Cuckoos in Australia

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Over the past week I have continued to keep an eye out for the Mistletoebirds that are breeding in the bush not far from our back fence. We have also been listening to the call of the Brush Cuckoo , which appears to have made itself at home in the same area.

Here’s Looking at You

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Careful readers of my recent posts, and surely there must be at least one or two, will note that I have had some pretty exciting outings of late. Most of these were due to my hosting some far better birders than I.

Mistletoebird breeding update

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I thought I should update you all on the Mistletoebirds that are nesting close to home, because I walk by the nest every day. Since I wrote about the nest a couple of weeks ago it has become a lot more obvious with the loss of leaves on the tree. Tree with Mistletoebird nest.

Attend third

Speaker: Hannah Flynn

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Costa Rica’s Signature Parakeet

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Every place has its common birds, the species that do very well in a given habitat. As we like to say, these are species that are “hard to miss”, birds that, if you are watching, will be seen.

Give, and it shall be given unto you

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Down here in Mexico, many of the longest life lists belong to full- or part-time birding guides. Now, I’m no professional, but I am more than happy to take people to meet the wonderful birds of this country’s southwest.

Birding the Kruger Park (3): Malelane area

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I usually do not write much about traveling to and from birding places but my friend and I arrived in Malelane in the afternoon. We had been driving through Eswatini (Swaziland) for a few hours during the day, coming from Ndumo. Eswatini must have the worst paved roads I have ever experienced.

15 Australian Birds (Episode 6)

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When I was a kid (and don’t you hate it when blog posts start like this, with the author apparently just assuming that you care about how he spent his childhood), the first pets we had were a pair of Budgerigars. We even had some chicks – not that this was a big achievement.

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May Flowers

PPT 5.28

15 Australian Birds (Episode 5)

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According to Wikipedia, the national bird of Australia is the Emu – which I have not seen yet. On the other hand, some websites state that the Laughing Kookaburra is Australia’s national symbol.

Birding Shanghai in July 2022

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After returning once more from Nanhui and almost admiring the extent of ongoing destruction there, what better song to start this blog post than with excerpts from the song “Give up” by The Burning Hell?