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Pics from this morning and our last trip.

Posted Monday 27th April 2009 at 07:05 by china guy
Updated Tuesday 28th April 2009 at 04:21 by china guy
Chengdu Bird guiding [email protected] - Chengdu, Sichuan, the gateway to Tibet - to see more travel pics of Sichuan go to my travel blog at -
To see more of our birding pics go to -

Chestnut-eared Bunting - a male displaying how the bird picked up its name!!!!

We're just back from another trip - but despite some of the fine watching we get in those prime Sichuan birding sites - I really enjoy getting back to our own patch - those marshy paddies just across from our apartment.
Today's wet and foggy morning didn't give that much - but its good fun trying to get pics - and for once we met up with an obliging Chestnut-eared Bunting - resplendently dressed in its "Sunday best" plumage.
Maybe not one of Sichuan's rarest species - but I strongly feel birding should be more that just ticking off lists - after all enjoying the bird, the habitat and very fact you're out in the fresh air doing something that pushes towards physical and mental well-being must be among the most important aspects of our hobby.

This bird can be especially camera shy - White-breasted Waterhen. Heading back for cover, but it's not quick enough - I've got your picture!

Those Waterhens are easiest to spot at this time of year - the paddies are still unplanted and the vegetation, in the drains, hasn't grown enough to provide good cover. Their feeding - furtive patrols at the edges of the cultivated areas - often takes place in the open. But at the slightest hint of danger - those long toes, that are essential equipment for birds who want to creep ontop of wetland habitats rather than sink into them, can also propel a Waterhen at quite a speed towards the nearest hide-out.

Another wetland's bird - but one that we haven't got on our paddies. White-crowned Forktail - a pic from our last trip.

Where as the other Forktails are found in more typical montane type habitats - White-crowned - can be seen around cultivated land in valley bottoms. Their high pitched calls are a dead give away - but like other black and white birds they can be pure horrors, with regard to the best exposure levels, when taking their pics.
The Forktail, with feeding material, shows us that we're well into the breeding season out here, and today I was watching another black and white bird - White Wagtail - looking after its young. However the Wagtail fledglings were being eyed-up by the local Long-tailed Shrike - but not for long - as the parent wagtails teamed-up and drove the predator away.

Something more exotic - Fork-tailed Sunbird

Another pic from our trip - nice sunny Sichuan, just two days ago!!!!! The commonest Sunbird we see is Mrs. Gould's - but Fork-tailed are also about, just their diminutive size means you have to keep an extra sharp-eye open for this species.
Total Comments 2


Peewit's Avatar
Hi China Guy

Loved to see your pictures anyday.
It is a interesting tour to see what other birds reside in the world away from the UK

I have to say the Chestnut eared Bunting is one very handsome looking bird, along with the more exotic Sunbird you have shown us also.

Just interesting to see/hear about birds away from our familar patch. I for one love that aspect.

Posted Tuesday 28th April 2009 at 03:00 by Peewit Peewit is offline
china guy's Avatar
Hi kathy - it's nice to show folk that there's still a little nature left in China - lets hope a lot more of it gets the protection it deserves.
Here's another pic - one from yesterday that we took, at the same site, just a stone's throw from where we live - Chinese Pond Heron - this is a common bird around here. Today was also rewarding, giving a new species for our local patch - Greater Short-toed Lark.

Posted Wednesday 29th April 2009 at 04:41 by china guy china guy is offline
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