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Dr Manjeet Singhs Malayan Patch (1 Viewer)

Tue January 1, 2008

I thought I saw a Bird last night
when I looked up to the stars above,
Yes, “was it you God or the stars above
Who brought PEACE & JOY to the souls below”.
I thought I saw a Bird last night.

Last Night I was sitting on my lawn with my family and mom at midnight. I saw the year 2007 passing. Just to let you all know that the past year was full of joy and happiness with Birdforum.
MAY THIS YEAR BRING Peace, Happiness and JOY to ONE & ALL OF YOU. HAPPY 2008.
Flowers. Frangipani

We have just reached a milestone, this posting for the first of January is number two hundred of Manjeets stories in this thread. Well done Manjeet:t:.
To add to these stories I have discovered on the net some of the places Manjeet mentions in his wanderings after birds, and I thought it might be a good idea to post descriptions of them here. I do hope all of you reading this thread will enjoy reading about these places that so many of us will never get to see, places that we can only dream about. Thank you Manjeet for introducing us to your country and showing us all those wonderful pictures of birds in -- "YOUR PATCH"--.

What seems to be a sleepy town, steamrollered by the more dynamic metropolis of Kuala Lumpur, Kuala Selangor retains some memories of its glorious past and the charms of an old life that is still alive and well in certain pockets. 67km southeast of KL, Kuala Selangor began as a small settlement inhabited by the “Bugis” people who sailed from Indonesia and settled on the estuary. Before interference from Malay Sultans and rulers from other states, the settlement lived in peace and tranquillity under the guidance of a female leader called “Upu Chendera Burung”. Such adoration the villagers had for their leader They vowed to elect only leaders of Bugis origin to replace her in her time of death, believing that only a Bugis leader can lead them into a better life. For a time after Upu Chendera Burung's death, no suitable candidate came forth to take the seat as the village head. Ambitious individuals came from Perak, Kedah, Thai, Penang etc. to contest for the village head position. Failing to claim the seat, and already having travelled from afar and perhaps too proud and foolish to admit defeat, they decided instead to open up areas around the vicinity for themselves. Hence, evolved the names of nearby villages such as Kampung Kuantan, Kampung Kedah, and Kampung Siam. A strategic location, Kuala Selangor prospered during the early years of the 14th century. Brisk trading with seafarers and trade merchants made the town a household name and an important docking point. Trading route maps of the early Chinese merchants indicated the locations of the Klang River and the Selangor delta. It was believed that these were the maps used during the days when Admiral Cheng Ho (1405-1433) was sent to Melaka by the Ming Emperor to seal diplomatic relationships with the Malay rulers for a safer trading route. So, having established the strategic importance of the delta, as with all strategic locations comes with a jostle for power. Kuala Selangor went through a series of transitions. Great battles were fought, blood of foreigners and locals alike were spilt for the sake of economic and political standing. Today Kuala Selangor caters largely to tourists passing through on their way to Kelip-Kelip or Kampung Kuantan and the local travelers on the trail of seafood binging. Kuala Selangor town is not particularly big and one can easily walk around without a map or a guide. There are a number of cheap food outlets and a couple of fast food joints. It is also possible to walk to the Kuala Selangor Nature Park and Bukit Melawati for a visit. The Malaysian Nature Society and the Selangor State Government establish the Park as a cooperative effort. The intention is to study, conserve, and allow the residence to enjoy the Malaysian natural heritage. The whole area is equivalent to a giant showcase where visitor can enjoy an on-the-spot report of the happenings to their own habitat. It is a place to educate the younger generation on our natural heritage. Urban dwellers should feel the ambiance in the park and to reflect it with the quality of life that they are living. What else can they do? Their contribution to improving the overall living standard! Along the shore lines of the Peninsula, the Mangrove Forest is being gradually depleted from uncontrolled harvesting for logs. Industrial Parks and housing estates have move in to swallow up the lands from these dying forest. For a long stretches of coastlines, it is not surprising that there is hardly any refuge for wildlife and birds to rest! The Malaysian Nature Society with assistance from the Selangor State Government jointly push through a project to salvage what is left. The Kuala Selangor Nature Park is thus created. To say, it offers a wide variety of appropriate environments to serve as habitats for the birds and wildlife. There is the Secondary forest and a brackish water Lake system to complement the existing Mangrove Forest, Estuary of the Selangor River and mud flats. All these are important to support the living things assembled in this narrow strip of protected enclave. Counting the life forms, the Park recorded the sightings of about 156 species of birds [residence and migratory], a variety of insects, spiders, molluscs, crabs, fishes, reptiles and mammals. Kuala Selangor Nature Park is situated at the mouth of Selangor River, in the state of Selangor, Malaysia. It covers approximately 800 acres of mangroves and mudflats and is the home to various wildlife such as otters, monkeys, birds, mudskippers and crabs. It has chalets for overnight visitors, hostel for study groups, and a visitor’s center to provide information and sell souvenirs. Birdwatching is perhaps the most exciting activity here. Over 140 species of birds have been sighted. Among the rare ones are the Nordman Greenshank and the Mangrove Pitta. The park is also involved in the Milky Stork reintroducing programme thanks to a contribution by Land and General. The park has a lake that provides roosting and feeding sites for various birds. From the bird hides and the towers around the lake one can view otters and birds feeding in the lake. It is the home to a large colony of Grey Herons. This park is under the management of the Malaysian Nature Society. The mudflats in front of the park are also rich with life. Various fishes and shellfishes can be seen on the flats confirming the importance of the mudflats and mangroves as a breeding and nursery ground for fishery. The mudflats are also important feeding grounds for the migratory birds on their stopover from Siberia to Australia. The sector, dominated by Mangrove trees covers an area of about 234 acres [95 hectares]. This area is the focal point of the eco-system for the Nature Park. This relatively "young" forested area has attracted 13 species of Mangrove trees. Here, you will get to see amphibious inhabitants from crabs to snakes. To give visitors a better opportunity to taste the ambiance deep inside the Mangrove Forest, raised boardwalks are built and permeate through to the crowded woods and over the mudflats. While on the boardwalk, inhabitants on the mudflats can be watched, you can see them moving around in their daily activities. Enjoy the scenic sight! Feel your own mood to be in the midst of the Avicenna forest. The 2 artificially created lakes get its fresh supply of brackish water from the Selangor River. The water level is controlled by sluice gates. To compliment the setting up of the lakes, few bird hides are built and strategically located. These watch towers are raised and one of them is at ground level. With these facilities visitors can wait and see the water birds and waders. The setting will put you in the mood to experience the joy of bird watching.
3rd Jan 2008
I didn’t do any birding on the first because I closed the surgery just after one pm and seeing as it was a bright sunny day I went out with my family. On the second I once again failed to go out during my lunch break because of the amount of patients to see to. It was still bright and sunny in the afternoon so I thought I might get time to go birding. I looked up at the clock at three pm and there were no patients in the waiting room. I had just about finished my medical report when there was a loud thumping on my door. The door was opened by my staff and in falls Roshan. (Remember him people, yes I know you do.) “Oh my God” I said, “not again”. The little lad jumped up and down and yelled, “Happy New Year Doctor Uncle, please come quick my Dad has torn his Sex, come quick. This time I thought I’m not going to make a fool of myself and told him, “You go first and my staff and I will come in ten minuets time”
Off he shot like a rocket, but first telling my staff as he passed the desk, that I will leave first and she was to follow with Doctor Uncle’s bag. I went out of the practice with hands in my pockets and nonchalantly started strolling down the road whistling a pleasant tune, and looking up at the feral pigeons in the trees. As I was passing the first shop the shopkeeper came out. “Hi Doc, were you going”. Still keeping my dignity I casually said, “Just taking a break and looking at the birds” But there was no fooling these guys when one after the other shopkeepers kept coming out as I passed. The blighters must have seen little Roshan passing and when they saw me they knew they were in for a good laugh. As I reached half way to the house, Roshan came racing back and shouted, “Quick Dr Uncle”. That was the cue for all the shopkeepers to race after me, especially when they then saw my staff following. Oh boy, there went my dignity and I just shook my head and shrugged my shoulders and continued strolling down the road. By the time I reached the little boy's place, sixteen chaps were following me. I rang the bell and the boy's grandmother came out. I asked her, “where is your son”. She said, “Sleeping”. Now I ask you. How can any guy sleep with damage to that precious part of his anatomy, and again how am I to tell a seventy year old mother that her son’s sex is torn? I stood there fumbling for the right words, then blurted out, (((( “Roshan says that your son's wee wee is torn”)))). The serious look on her face slowly changed before me and the wrinkles of worry changed slowly to mirth, her eyes started to sparkle and a big grin spread into a full blown laugh and she hugged her stomach and laughed and laughed. I felt such a fool standing there watching her although the laughing was becoming infectious and I could feel a laugh welling up inside me. Then Roshan rushed out of the house holding something long in his hand, his father's FOOT BALL Socks, “see Dr Uncle, Dad’s SEX is torn”. I looked at the grandmother wobbling like a jelly with laughter and then noticed behind me all the shopkeepers standing there with faces going purple with suppressed laughter and I lost all my dignity and holding my ribs I keeled over laughing, followed by the mob behind me. After a while I composed myself and started trotting back to the surgery, then that smarty-pants behind me shouts out, “Hi Doc, I didn’t know you were a tailor too”, followed by another blast of laughter.
By the time I reached the practice it was four thirty, the time I go for my evening birding. I couldn’t help myself laughing all the way to my patch but I soon shut up when I alighted from the car and heard a loud click from my knee. Every step I took the knee clicked and I realised I was getting older. My joints have started clicking.
Not long after entering the patch my attention was drawn to four Black Bazas flying overhead. I attempted to take a snap shot of them but when checking the shot on the L.C.D. screen I realised I had only got a tail. I continued clicking my way through the patch and on reaching the end I rested and was delighted to see my old faithful was there. This eagle knows whenever I am around and usually fly's away on spotting me, but wonders of wonder it just sat there as if telling me, “Manjeet Go ahead take a shot and let me be your first bird for 2008”. How could I refuse such a generous offer? This bird looked so majestic as it sat there allowing me to take picture after picture. When I was satisfied I waved to the bird in thanks and you know, it waved back at me, and laughing as if it knew I had seen Roshan. Hope you like this picture, it filled me up with admiration, and deep down I knew “this is going to be a wonderful year”.
Crested Serpent-Eagle Spilornis cheela

David Roach
Oh Doc, you really know how to bring in the New Year right!!!!! Thanks for the laughter and the majestic stunner above!!!!!
That's a majestic bird to start the year with Manjeet! And a somewhat less majestic medical case! Great work - although a short course in darning might make it greater.
Very impressive 1st bird of the year.
What a cracker! Tell you what Manjeet, you're in big trouble when I return if I don't get to see for myself all these marvellous birds you've been posting in my absence....and no excuses like "rain" I know you have the ability to see dark clouds off on their way with a wave of your sword! Cheers old' friend.
Lol, your first 2008 bird is a Raptor! Scary, my friend! Yes, it is going to be a wonderful year
A beautiful majestic bird to start the New Year off Manjeet
A bird worthy of your sword, Manjeet. Amazing...the sheer amount of different species you get. Keep it up and 2008 will be a great year,Doc.
What a bird, what a shot, what a story....Brilliant stuff Manjeet
Ha-ha, a great story and a fine shot to go with it, Happy new year!
Hello and Happy fist image Manjeet!! Superb capture my friend!! Lovely story again!! Yes 2008 is going to be good, Cheers.
Trust you Manjeet to start the year giving us all a laugh! Hope 2008 will indeed be a great year for us all. Lovely shot of a great looking bird
Superb and majestic! an other great portrait,Doc!
What a great first post of 2008 Doc, a really magnificent regal looking creature, good work. I don’t think you should take up tailoring, stick to taking these beautiful bird images. As for creaking bones Manjeet, mine have been creaking for years. Happy New Year to you and your loving family, friends, and patients Manjeet.
Perhaps in your medical bag as well as the needle you use for doing stitches on bad cuts, maybe you should put a darning needle and some wool as well.
Can I swap the rain for the snow that is coming down really quick at the moment
Super photo.
stunning shot of this magnificent bird Manjeet, I love it, a great story too, keep them coming mate, cheers.
keith Mitchell
Excellent. Happy New Year.
Thanks Manjeet for a wonderful start to 2008! Brilliant capture and an ever entertaining narrative! Thanks for sharing both! Happy New Year to you and yours! Nora
Excellent story and 2008 raptor I agree 2008 looks very promising.
Geoff Pain
Wow! wish my first bird of 2008 was as good.
Dr Manjeet Singh
hank you all for your comments....and don’t forget...LOVE..LAUGH..&..LIVE...
What a way to the start the year, fabulous shot Doc and a great first story to get us
Marian Alvarez
h! I was wondering if you had posted some birds during these last couple of days and here I find the answer! A mega-cool looking raptor to start the year, thank you very much for this stunning portrait, doctor!!!
A wonderful start to 2008 with a fantastic photo of the eagle, congratulations Manjeet. Thank you for starting the year off with a good laugh.
Rajiv Lather
Magnificent bird!! Manjeet you seem to be getting closer and closer to the birds. Well done! regards, Rajiv
Tim Taylor
Let's hope all the other birds and your patients are as obliging as this eagle for 2008 Manjeet.
Looks like your humour is rubbing off! What a fantastic start for 2008.
Donald Talbott
Another stunning capture from you Manjeet. Love it!!!
Clive Timmons
Dr I am just getting up from the floor you Knocked my Sexes off with this fantastic shot reminds me of when I had a bad reaction to an injection and an Old Lady neighbour asked me what was wrong with me I told her I HAD A BAD ERECTION from an injection
Great shot Manjeet, wonderful looking bird and an even greater story than the last one. I think your patients are the luckiest (having you as their Doc.)
Great picture and story Manjeet, up to the usual very high standard.
Wicked shot and so good to get the bird to pose. I change my sex twice a day!!!!!
7th Jan 2008
Sunday was my day off and I decided to pay a visit to the F.R.I.M. but first I picked up my brewery but then decided to have breakfast first. When I noticed the fuel level in the car was low I went to my usual pump and as I was giving my car its breakfast I heard this loud shout, “OHHHHHHH Dr, it’s me remember, the baby in the car.” There I saw this chap and his radiant wife and their seven children, the last one was a baby, and they all seemed overjoyed to see me. I sat down near the pump and the lady promptly dropped the baby in my lap. (((On reflection I think this story is for you Tanny my old friend. Manjeet told me this story on the phone when wishing me happy Christmas.))) The story goes like this. It was Christmas Eve and at three p.m. my nurse rushed in and said.”Dr, there is a man outside the practice shouting his baby is coming in the car” I quickly told her to bring the delivery tray and bolted outside. The husband was jumping up and down shouting, “I’m having a baby in the car”. I caught him and gave him a good shake. “Is this your wife's first baby”? He said, “No it’s the seventh” and he continued jumping up and down in his excitement. I then turned my attention to the car and immediately saw it was a Mini Minor. Oh good grief, why me, I thought, fancy trying to deliver a baby in that little thing. I shouted to my staff and shop keepers to bring some bed sheets. With these sheets my staff and the shopkeeper’s wife had rigged a cover around the car to prevent inquisitive eyes. I ducked into the open door, or rather had to squeeze in and right away saw the crown of the babies head was visible. My senior staff opened the opposite door and I told the lady to lay her head on my staff's lap outside the other door. In my usual calming voice that I use in emergencies I told the lady not to worry, I am here and I started guiding the crown out and told her to breathe in and breathe out please, just breathe in and blow out. Suddenly I felt someone blowing on my neck from behind. As the head came out I told her to push now and breathe in and out and push. I then felt someone pushing my butt from behind. In that confined space I managed to turn my head enough to see the idiot husband was pushing me. I shouted out for someone to get the chap off from behind me. I then continued coxing her to push. (Usually Multi-gravid women who have delivered more babies are easy to deliver unless there is a complication) Moments later out came the baby and I Legated the umbilical cord and turned the baby over and gave it a swat on the bottom. The, “WAAAAAAAAh..from the baby blew my beard and moustache back, STRONG LUNGS”. As I held the baby with tenderness and joy I remembered my own children being born and it also brought back memories of the day I got married. ((when eight huge burly bearded Singh’s with swords escorted me to the Sikh Temple as a sacrificial lamb. You people who are not married remember this. )) I passed the baby to my staff and waited for the after birth, once that was out I cleaned her up with the help of my staff, the three of us still in the car. If anyone thinks its easy delivering a baby in a mini, you should try it. I then told the lady it was a boy and now your husband will take you and the baby to hospital for a check-up. Oh you should have seen the big smile on her face, it was like the moon had just come out and was smiling at this hairy Singh. Then in a husky tired voice the lady said, “Thank You Doctor”. Now came the difficult and amusing part of the story, I was truly stuck. The stupid small car had clamped onto me, well that’s what I think and I’m sticking to that. I asked my staff to pull me out and felt someone grab hold of my belt from behind and started pulling me, and when he gave a massive heave and I shot backwards like a cork out of a bottle and landed sprawling on the floor with my helper. I checked for any injuries to both of us and the only ones were some skin that I lost from my elbows on the side of the door.
I looked around and was amazed to see the husband tied to one of the trees outside my practice. “Oh no” the well meaning shopkeepers must have done it. I asked the ladies to remove the sheets from around the car and as they moved away the crowd of people who had gathered around began cheering and laughing. With my hands pressing into my aching back I walked over to the husband who by now had come to his senses. “Is it a boy or a girl”? Were his first words to me? I deliberately denied knowledge as to what gender his child was, telling him it was because I didn’t have time to see. Then the nurse came out with the clean little one and all the people began cheering again. The nurse handed the wee one to me and I saw a bicycle parked near the tree and went and sat on it holding the baby. The husband had been released from the tree and he dashed over to see his little child and asked me again if it was a boy or a girl. The poor chap has so far fathered six daughters. As I held the baby he un-wrapped the cloth and the first thing he looked at was the little bird, his face was hardly three inches away from the bird, and he shouted, “It’s a BOY Dr”. Promptly the little bird got up on its hind legs and anointed the father with water. Every one watching collapsed laughing and cheering. I wiped the laughing tears from my eyes and told him to take the mother and baby to the hospital, because I felt there is a bit of jaundice in the baby’s (conjunctive. ?). He took the baby and handed it to his wife and drove off with the crowd cheering. Then all of a sudden they became quiet and I felt a tugging near my knee. I looked down and saw Roshan standing there looking up at me, and in the silence he shouted, “Dr Uncle, the baby's whip was stuck and baby pisshed on his daddy” Well that was it; I will leave it to your imagination to what happened next. All of this came back to me as I handed the cute little baby back to its mother and warned the husband, “If there is a next one, please take it to the hospital”. As I drove away I mused to myself about how cute that little baby was and I knew then that I was in for a lucky day. When we reached the F.R.I.M. I decided to go into the thick jungle area and hardly had we taken a few steps when I saw this small flittering little bird. I quickly hid behind a bush and in a few minutes this lifer of mine was there. I call it my colours of the rainbow.
Orange-Bellied Flowerpecker..(Male). : Dicaeum trigonostigma
8th Jan 2008T
After chasing around the jungle and succeeding to get pictures of my new lifer, the, Orange-bellied Flowerpecker, my brewery and I came out onto the path. Immediately my brewery started jumping up and down and stripping off his cloths, and before I knew it he was down to his underpants searching for those horrible slimy black Leeches that inevitably crawl onto us when we go into the deep jungle. I did tell him this is the main road and people will come, but he carried on in that half naked state pouring salt over the gruesome blood swollen critters, this is the quickest and easiest way to remove them.
I took the salt shaker and removed two more from his back, and when I saw these evil, creepy creatures on him I knew I would have them on myself also but no way was I going to disrobe here out in the open, when knowing my luck, I would meet up with that troop of girls again. I looked around and saw not far off the male and female sign on a small building. I told my brewery to take care of things and bolted for the toilets. I barged through the first door on the right and noticed all the cubicles were empty and dived into the nearest one and slammed the door shut and bolted it, then with a sigh I stripped off all my cloths. I discovered three of the obnoxious creatures on me and threw them into the toilet and then flushed them down with a vengeance.
Just as I had completed dressing myself I heard a commotion outside, a babbling of ladies voices and it sounded like the group of them had entered the toilets I was in. Then it dawned on me I was in the wrong toilets, I had come into the ladies.
“Oh my God” if they discover me here I am dead. Then I had a brainwave and remembered the time when I was a medical student. One of my pastimes then was practicing ventriloquism and I remember when I was in first professorship and this girl in our class had the biggest boobs imaginable. One day she came and sat in the front (I was always a back bencher) and one of my friends went and sat beside her. I know right away what his thoughts were when seeing him pass furtive glances at her chest. I threw my voice and said, “Wow you got huge Boobs”. For a moment there was dead silence then the girl got up and promptly slapped my friends face. He jumped up and said, “It wasn’t me I didn’t say it”. She replied. “At least you were thinking about it”. Then the whole class collapsed laughing even the professor.
I wondered if I was able to do it now and after a moments hesitation I spoke up in my best hysterical female voice and said, “There are leeches in the toilet”. There was silence for a moment, then came the sound of stampeding feet and screaming and then silence apart from the sound of running feet going into the distance. I attentively opened the door and seeing the coast was clear, quickly walked out and saw my brewery waiting there with a worried face. “Sir” he said, “Did they see you without your cloths”, “No” I said, I just shouted “leeches and they all bolted”. We looked down the road and the ladies were still pounding away to the next toilet about a mile away, and then both of us collapsed laughing. Oh I do feel a little bit guilty but after all it wouldn’t be right to see the “Singh Bear” nude.
We strolled along the road for a while until reaching one of the fringes of the jungle area where we sat down for a rest and searched for birds. In a moment my brewery had spotted some movement just in the jungle and refused to come in with me, so I was left on my own to stalk the bird, and was I delighted to discover that it was my second lifer for the day. The bird was a beauty and it even posed for me.
Of course it still could hear the ladies pounding away. This Nature's gift to us is just a miracle, isn’t it?
Banded Bay Cuckoo Cacomantis sonneratii

8th Jan 2008
Thankfully I had no leeches on me this time and for the rest of the day after seeing this second lifer I had a silly grin on my face. I find this one a real beauty and am glad I was able to add the back profile. But this wasn’t the end of things for the day I also saw and photographed the Asian Fairy Blue-bird, a female, and again another one, the Crimson -winged Woodpecker. So in all I got four lifers for the day “YESSSSSSSS he says with his fist in the air” When we returned to the car I specifically avoided the ladies, just in case they realised it was me. Rob confirmed the identification of this bird for me in the B.F. Thank you Rob.
: Banded Bay Cuckoo Cacomantis sonneratii sonneratii
11th Jan 2008
On Tuesday

After loading my pictures of the Banded Bay Cuckoo and still with the feeling of joy cursing through my veins because I had four lifers in one week, the Asian Fairy Blue-bird, Banded Bay Cuckoo, the Orange bellied Flowerpecker and the Crimson-winged Woodpecker under my turban. But when I made my way to my local patch I suddenly became apprehensive, a nagging feeling that something was going to go wrong. I shrugged the feeling away by saying to myself; “at least it couldn’t be worse than anything I’ve been through in the past”. (Famous last words) After parking the car I started walking and at one spot I had to step over a hump of dirt on the road and as my right foot came down, I heard a splat and on looking down saw I had stepped up to my ankle in Cow “excrement” (Polite Ghost writer) I looking at it and said, “If this cow pie is this big then how big is the cow”.
Pulling my foot out with a ‘sucking glug’, I looked around for the owner of the mess but the bovine was nowhere around, but I did notice a (poodle “lol”) I mean a puddle of water about ten feet away and I went over and stepped in to wash the ‘gunk’ off my boot. What a mistake, the puddle was deep and I went up to my knee in the water. Now all the muck had washed into the boot. I almost felt like crying. Well I said to myself, “What else could go wrong” I wish I hadn’t said that, me and my big mouth. Taking my usual footpath down to where I usually have a rest under some tall trees and it was when roughly three or four feet from the place where I usually sit, I heard a creaking and cracking sound from above, I glanced up and saw a branch was falling down. I stumbled backwards and fell onto my behind. “Ouch” I yelled and then thanked my God the branch had missed me. I was still hanging on to my treasure, my kowa on the tripod and when I was about to get up from the sodden ground I looked up into the tree and saw about thirty feet away this magnificent Hawk sitting there laughing at me. Everything was forgotten a Hawk was in my patch. I focused and started taking pictures. On my seventh shot the sign came up in the L.C.D. telling me the batteries were low. “Oh shivers”, where was my spare batteries, got them and struggled to get them installed and when I was about to take a picture the blessed bird flew away laughing. It’s true I tell you and I swear I heard the chattering laughter of all the other birds in the vicinity. I just had to check the pictures and “Yesssssss, my fifth lifer. I thought at first it was a Chinese Goshawk but the others and Dave B in bird forum said. “Made in Japan”. The picture isn’t one of the best because the sun was from the back, but you know, I went back to my practice singing like a lark. It looks like it’s going to be a Wonderful Year for me. Provided I can survive the mishaps.
Juvenile Japanese Sparrowhawk: Accipiter gularis

I need an Accipiter confirmation..please.. ________________________________________
8th Jan 2008
Today I had visited one of my favourite patches, the one opposite the Pond and Mud-flats at Pandamaran-jaya, Port Klang, Selangor, Malaysia, and have been seeing this accipiter from a distance for the last one and half months. Today I managed to get some pictures. I would like to know if it is a Chinese Sparrowhawk or a Crested Goshawk although I did not see a crest. The pictures I hope will show you that there is no crest, although it might be a juvenile. I wonder if any of you could help identifying this bird. I think it is a Chinese Sparrowhawk The size was small and it is a very compact bird, and also a fast flier, and it did well in the middle canopy, ‘flying I mean’. Regards and thank you in Advance.

I'd second Chinese, but then I have real difficulties with Accipiters.
Tun Pin
Hi Dr, I am not good in Raptor id. Based on my Fergoson-Lees&Christie "Raptors of the World-A Field Guide" and Craig Robson's "Birds of SEA", I vote for Japanese Sparrowhawk. Reason is that Chinese female's underwing is very lightly spotted. Your 3rd bird photo showing its strongly spotted underwing, which fits closer to Japanese Sparrowhawk. Let's hear from more opinions from others.
Any Body please.”lol”.
Dave B
Interesting streaky head, but I'd go for Japanese (juv?)
I'd also say this is a Japanese Sparrowahawk, based on small size and wing/tail proportions (and, as previously mentioned, patterning on underwing)
Underpart pattern would suggest a juvenile.
“Phew” “lol”finally my friends. Thank you very much Dave B and johnallcock, tunpin and Hanno I am surprised that it is here in my patch. Yes my first. Regards people. Thank you
Motmot Jap Sparrowhawk underwing along with other pics can be seen here:
Last edited:
15th Jan 2008
Ever since Friday it’s been raining continuously, and in my practice my staff are behaving as if a bomb is about to go off. When I can’t go birding it seems I am unfit to work with. Even my patients would come in with sheepish looks on their faces and commiserate with me, and then wouldn’t hang around like they usually do but quickly leave. Then a little boy came in of about four years old who had a fever. After checking him over he turned to me and said, “Dr Uncle, I have prayed to my God to make it sunny for my favorite doctor so that he can go birding”. I looked at him, and my friends he had such a serious look in his face. I said, “Come here” and picked him up and gave him a big hug and then I started laughing because the smile on the little one's face was enough to dispel my miserable mood. Then my staff came in with big smile on her face and tells me it has stopped raining. I turned to the boy and said, “See your God listened to you”. Moments after the child left I bolted for the patch. It was still cloudy with a stray streak of sunlight showing through now and again. As I approached my usual parking place I noticed a huge Trooper parked there along with many other cars stopped nearby. (Strewth, I thought when Manjeet said Trooper he was talking about a policeman, not a vehicle) The lady sitting in the Trooper was leaning out of the window and was explaining something to the waiting crowd. I parked behind her vehicle and walked around to speak to her. “Hello Mrs Chong, (her whole family are my patients) what are you doing parked at my place”. She looked down at me and said, “Sorry DR Manjeet, the clutch of my car is stuck”. I have already phoned the mechanic” “When did you notice the trouble” I asked. She said, “As I was coming down the steep slope from the bridge, I wanted to press the clutch. And it didn’t move, and she stood on the clutch to show me. I wonder if I might have a look, maybe I can see what the trouble might be”.Mrs Chong opened the door and descended and I looked at the clutch peddle and just couldn’t help starting to laugh. I staggering to the side of the road and sat down and howled, then all the other guys had a look and they started laughing also. Poor Mr Wong, she came over with an embarrassed blush on her face and asked what we were laughing at. I took her to the vehicle and showed her and she stepped back with her hand to her mouth with shock after seeing one of her wooden clogs jammed under the clutch. It must have been when she came down the hill; the clog had rolled under the clutch. I removed the clog and said to her, “Mrs Chong you owe me RM100” and started laughing again, and still laughing I headed into the patch wondering how on earth she is going to explain that to the mechanics. I wandered along enjoying the serenity of the place and when I reached the cowshed area I leaned against a post and stood there looked around. The usual common birds were there but all the cooped up feelings I had these last days had gone and I took a deep breath and marveled at natures beauty around me. Then I heard the beating of wings and my head whipped around like an owl’s, and just across the pond I saw a flock of more than a hundred small birds flying towards me. I ducked behind the pole and prayed to my God that they will land on the tree in front of me about twenty or more feet away. They did land there and my friends there were so many of them I didn’t know whose picture I should take first. Then I focused on the nearest one and with the first click of the camera all the bickering among the birds stopped. I quickly took another shot and blimey they were all looking at me with those intense stares. Then I heard this birds say, “believe me, DR Singh it has been two years isn’t it old man.”, and before I could raise my fist, off they flew laughing. I just sat down and laughed with the joy of it all. Thank you for listening to these ramblings of an old man.”lo”.
Purple-backed Starling Sturnus sturninus
29th Jan 2008
Once again my server has let me down; it’s been down since last Thursday. The weather hasn’t been that brilliant either, one minute the sun is shining and then next it’s raining again. The only birding I managed to do was for just a few hours. Today I am determined I would get out come rain, hail or snow. I had just finished the last lot of the patients when my phone rings; it was a call from my specialist friend from the Government Hospital. “Hello Manjeet he said, do you have a spare minute” “certainly my friend, what’s the problem”. “Manjeet do you remember Mr.Klang, the A.K. body-building champion, you know, the one who fainted when you were taking his wife's blood” (The story is in this thread). “Yes I remember him, what’s his problem this time”. “For the past two weeks he’s been coming in for admission because he’s feeling sick, and he stays for most of the day till he’s well enough to be sent back home again, but the next day he’s back again and vomiting non stop, and is dehydrated within sixteen hours, I’m stumped with this one, do you have any ideas”. Now a bell started ringing in my turbaned head and I asked him, “When did all this start” and he answered, “Oh, about three weeks ago”. “How’s his father-in-law taking this because he hates him and is forever moaning about why his daughter had to pick such a muscle bound cretin as a husband”. While my friend was talking about this chap my thoughts were running to certain things in the history of this family, then I asked my friend if he’s done any hormonal studies. “Why” he exclaimed. “Well my dear friend, is the wife pregnant”, he quickly went through the history and said, “Yes, three weeks ago she was tested positive for pregnancy” I started laughing and I could imagine my friend turning red, because a fellow G.P. was laughing at him. He shouted, “Come now Manjeet, control yourself and explain”. I stopped my laughter and said, “Not to worry, the vomiting will stop in three months time”. “Do you have any idea as to how we can prevent it during the three months”, He asked. “Send him to stay with his father-in-law for the three months, and ask the mother who loves her daughter-in-law to stay with her because she would take better care of her than the husband. “But damn it, what is the diagnosis” my frustrated friend asked. “Elementary Dr Watson, ‘lol’. Sympathetic pregnancy, there have been three cases like this in the past in Malaysia. Check his hormonal levels they will be quite high”. I continued, “He will stay like this till the 1st trimester is over for the wife, (I hope!) With a laugh I said “goodbye” and put the phone down. I noticed the time was twelve thirty, time for my lunchtime birding. I walked into my patch and all worries and frustration vanished with the first bird song, even though it was only a Koel singing. I looked up when I heard my friend the Crested Serpent Eagle calling as he circled high above. I had seen a Hodgson's Hawk Cuckoo on the eighth of this month and wanted to get a better picture of it. After a careful search I saw it sitting under the canopy and got as close as I could, but before I could put my tripod down it flew away. With a sigh I trudged on until finely reaching a small area of trees with a carpet of dried leaves on the ground. One or two of the trees had been cut down with only knee high stumps remaining. As I was passing about ten feet away from these stumps the handle of my tripod gouged me in the neck. Now some people, like those in Australia, use a stick to divine for water. I think my kowa and tripod do the same for me when looking for birds. It gouged me to say there is a bird around, ‘lol’. (((Very interesting, check out the thread, “Psychic Birding”))) I squatted down with a niggling feeling that something was watching me. Slowly I scanned the area and first noticed about three cows grazing close buy, Then I stared at the tree stumps about twenty feet behind me and as my eyes wandered over them I could see there was a strange knob on the top of one and I became very excited as I realised what it was. I kneeled on the ground and shortened my tripod and focused my kowa and in full screen I could see it was a Large-tailed Nightjar. I was trembling with excitement as I took picture after picture and all those pent up emotions of the past week faded away and every thing was beautiful and right in the world. With a bird that is normally a ghost in the canopy I just had to take advantage of this one and decided to get a little bit closer, and I managed to take a close up picture. With this last click of the shutter the bird flew away and I sat down on my haunches and started laughing and a couple of tears ran down my cheek with my happiness. As I sat there in this blissful frame of mind still looking at the tree stumps a strange slurping, raspy sound came from behind me and I felt a huge hot tongue scraping my back. I swivelled around and there was this moon eyed cow with love in her eyes licking my shirt from behind. “Ye Gods”, I was up and away as fast as my hairy legs could take me and without looking back I could hear that crazy cow trotting after me. Huffing and puffing I reached the road and thank the Lord there wasn’t anyone around. Just imagine if there had been people there and they enquired, “DR Singh what is chasing you”, and I would have had to say, “An Amorous Bull”. I know you’re all laughing, I think I should join the Olympics because I’m sure I did the fastest 1mile lap from my patch. There will be a few more pictures of this wonderful bird in the future, providing my server doesn’t play up again. My friend the (((speediest))) specialist called today and the Hormonal level was high. Which confirmed my diagnosis? The husband and wife have to live apart till the first trimester is over for the wife because the hormonal changes in the wife triggers his vomiting and nausea. He’s acting just like a pregnant woman. ‘lol’.
: Large-tailed Nightjar.: Caprimulgus macrurus

Here’s a close up of a relation of mine, check out the whiskers, can’t you see the resemblance to a Singh.
: Kin of Singh...lol.. Caprimulgus macrurus
I have found some more places on the internet mentioned by Manjeet so I hope you all get a better picture of where he does his birdwatching.

A former capital of Selangor, Klang was once the old royal capital where the British had placed their first Resident in Selangor in 1874.Gedung Raja Abdullah: One of the oldest Malay buildings in the country, it was once used by the Sultan to store tin from the mines in the area. It is currently a museum with displays of local history and tin that was once important to Malaysia. Sultan Sulaiman Mosque: A classic Islamic architecture that blends colonial with Asian features, it is a unique and memorable image in Klang. The mosque was presented to Sultan Sulaiman by the British colonial administration in the 19th Century.

Shah Alam, is Selangor's state capital and is a modern township surrounded at its periphery by Kuala Lumpur, Petaling Jaya, and five other major townships including Klang, Bangi, and Kajang. It enjoys a vantage location being ideally located halfway between the national capital, KL, and the viable Port Klang Bukit Melawati: Atop Melawati Hill, the highest point in the area, is the site of the 200-year-old Fort Altingsburg. Here, one can enjoy the panoramic view of the Straits of Malacca and the surrounding areas. It was from this spot that the Dutch surveyed the surrounding countryside before capturing it in 1794. In the past, the hill lured only the hardy and determined visitor as it meant a stiff climb. Today, there is a tram car service that takes you to the top. In the vicinity is a royal mausoleum where past Selangor sultans were buried.

Forest Reserve Institute Of Malaysia (FRIM) Kepong Selangor
FRIM covering some 600 hectares of tropical forest, experimental plants and arboretum, Forest Reserve Institute Of Malaysia (FRIM) serves not only as recreational park with canopy walkway, jungle trails, herbarium, and other facilities, but also provides invaluable knowledge about the flora found in here. FRIM promotes sustainable management and optimal use of forest resources by generating knowledge and technology through research, development and application. FRIM’s wide-ranging expertise, award-winning research and international collaborations have earned the Institute a name for itself in tropical forestry. FRIM consists of five research divisions. The Forestry Division provides data, standards and guidelines for managing our natural forests on a sustainable basis. The Product Development Division focuses on the development of forest-based industries. The Biotechnology Division involves in creating new planting material through genetic engineering. Among the services provided by the Institute are the arboretum which serves as reference for forestry education, a herbarium established in 1908 with over 200,000 specimens, training courses from landscaping to wood identification, rattan and bamboo product manufacture, a nursery, library and venues for local and international conferences. The Institute also offers a wide range of facilities for research, including managing six field research stations in areas of different forest types in various parts of the country. FRIM’s ‘forest tour packages’ provide opportunities for outdoor recreation and public education in its grounds. It is a popular spot for picnickers, joggers, cycle’s, tourists and nature study groups, for family day events, treasure hunts, camping, bird watching, jungle trekking and nature photography. The grounds, which began as degraded land in the form of sterile mining pools, scrubby wasteland and barren vegetable farms, long-abandoned, is today a treasure of relatively unpolluted air, cooler temperatures and quiet serenity.

Bird Watching With almost 600 species inhabiting Peninsular Malaysia and about 580 species in Borneo, Malaysia is a natural attraction for bird watchers. Due to the diversity of the habitats, there are many places with abundant bird life to choose from. Many birds are common to both geographic areas, although some species, known as endemic species, are unique only to a certain location. Birding activities are concentrated in three distinctive habitat types - mountain forests, lowland rainforests and mangroves. Mountain forests generally occur above an elevation of around 2,952 feet, while lowland rainforests remain the most extensive habitat for over 200 species. The Mangrove forest ecosystem is a coastal habitat where salt and freshwater environs meet with coastline fringe. (((Bird life abounds at Fraser's Hill and Cameron Highlands))), which feature lush green surroundings, panoramic views and hiking trails. Also, for a pleasant day trip, try the Kuala Selangor Nature Park. Located at a mangrove swamp along the west coast, the park supports 130 bird species and seasonal migratory birds. Another interesting location, which may need more thorough planning, is Taman Negara - a dense lowland forest that is more than 150 million years old and home to over 200 bird species. Migratory birds use Malaysia's west-coast flyway to travel to Sumatra and beyond, with peak movements in April and October. Tanjung Tuan in Malacca is a favoured spot that attracts bird watchers from all over the world, who hope to catch a glimpse of these birds. The tropical climate of Malaysia allows bird watching to be a year round activity. Rain usually falls heaviest from September to December in the West Coast of the Peninsular and from October to February in the East Coast, Sabah and Sarawak. As excited as they are, bird watchers must show utmost care and respect to the birds and their habitats during bird watching sessions. Permits from Forestry Department of various states may be needed at some bird sanctuaries. Your travel agent or tour guide may be able to advise you on this.

Kuala Selangor Nature Park : The Kuala Selangor Nature Park is approximately 2km from town below Bukit Melawati. The park consists of more than 250 hectares of coastal land and has well-marked trails for jungle trekking. With over 150 species identified, bird watching is a popular activity. Both local and migratory birds frequent the mangrove swamps along the coast. The rare spoon-billed Sandpiper and Nordmanns's Greenshank can also be seen in this nature park. Two watchtowers and hides have been constructed to aid in bird watching. Visitors may be fortunate enough to spot leaf monkeys, otters, and nocturnal leopards, among many other animals. Fireflies: Ever watched the scintillating display of fireflies? Fireflies are found mostly in groups of dozens to thousands in estuarine mangrove swamps. This unique nature's wonder can be seen at the lower reaches of the Selangor River banks, at Kampung Kuantan. As the sun sets, these fireflies begin flashing something akin to what glow-worms do but at a rate of three flashes per second. In doing so, a fascinating spectacle similar to Christmas tree lights is created. Fireflies' shows can be seen at Kuala Kuantan,

Melawati Hill is located in the coastal town of Kuala Selangor, a 30-minute drive from Kuala Lumpur. In the late 18th Century, the second Sultan of Selangor had a fortress constructed on Melawati Hill to protect the state from intruders. The hill provided a vantage point to monitor ships in the Straits of Malacca. Even with a strategic hold, the Melawati Fort yielded to the Dutch cannons. It was again destroyed during the Selangor Civil War, when warring factions fought for tin-rich lands. All that remains of the fort now are its cannons, its original foundation stones and fabled execution block. The landscaped hill offers a panoramic view of the Selangor coastline. Visitors will be delighted to watch the free-roaming Silverleaf Monkeys in the area. The adults are dark-haired with a tinge of silver, while the young ones are a bright orange. Gentle and adorable, they graciously wait for bread or fruits from visitors, unlike the mischievous Long Tail Macaques. Other attractions here are a lighthouse, a royal mausoleum and a quaint rest house.

Bukit Melawati is situated in Kuala Selangor. Bukit Melawati or also known as Bukit Selangor is now a tourist place and is well known in the history of Selangor. During the 19th century, there was a fort built on Bukit Melawati The purpose of this fort was to defend the state of Selangor from its enemies which came from the river mouth. Sultan Ibrahim Shah, the second Sultan of Selangor that reigned from the year 1778 until 1826 instructed that a fort be built at the peak of Bukit Melawati for defence. The purpose of building this fort was an effort by Selangor to avoid attacks from the Dutch. As the Dutch was trying to capture Johor - Riau and Selangor had strong relationship with the government of Johor and Riau, the Sultan of Selangor was afraid that the Dutch would retaliate and attacked Selangor.
The fort was built with solid stones arranged closely and almost half of Bukit Melawati was built with stone pillars and decorated with several cannons. In order to avoid erosion of the hill, rain-trees were planted. The fort has a big entrance about 3 meters wide facing the east and has a staircase leading to the courtyard. From the courtyard if you go down the staircase which consisted of twenty steps made of solid stones it will lead you to a small hill called Melawati Hill. This entrance has been used by the Sultan and other dignitaries to hold their ceremonies.
The second entrance which was about two meters wide was situated on the east side near an existing rest house. The third entrance faced the west and was used as an entrance from the defence fort at Bukit Tanjung Keramat. This entrance was equipped with several cannons measuring about 2 to 5 meters facing the direction of Kuala Selangor. During the 18th century, fighting broke out between the Dutch who were based in Malacca and the people of Selangor who were defending their land. In the year 1758, the Dutch who were ruling Malacca made an agreement with Sultan Salahuddin. In the agreement, the Sultan allowed the Dutch ships to sail into Kuala Selangor for the tin trade. Ships who requested for permission from the Sultan of Johor were also allowed to sail into Kuala Selangor as the Sultan of Johor was on good term with the Dutch. During the Anglo-Dutch war between 1780 and 1784, the status and influence of the Dutch became weak. The Sultan of Johor and the Sultan of Riau conspired to overthrow the Dutch as they wanted to get control of Malacca again. The Sultan of Selangor at that time was Sultan Ibrahin Shah, the second Sultan of Selangor who replaced his father, Sultan Salahuddin. On 13 July 1784, the Dutch army which consisted of 11 ships and several vessels belonging to the Raja Muhammad Ali of Siak arrived at Selangor and a war broke out between the Dutch and Sultan Ibrahim. The war lasted for two weeks and the fort was nearly destroyed. On 2 August 1784, the fort fell into the hand of the Dutch. Sultan Ibrahim, his son Raja Nala, Sayid Jaafar and the other royal families retreated to Hulu Selangor. The Sultan further retreated to Bernam and from Bernam to Pahang. In Pahang the Sultan managed to get assistance from the Prime Minister Abdul Majid to recapture Selangor. The Dutch who had captured Kuala Selangor appointed Raja Muhammad Ali from Siak as the regent of Selangor. The Dutch also made a peace agreement with Raja Muhammad Ali thereby further strengthened its stronghold in Kuala Selangor. After the war, Fort Malawati was repaired by the Dutch and equipped with better cannons. The Dutch named the fort at Bukit Malawati “Altingsburg”, which was the name of the Dutch Governor General at that time, that is Governor General Alting. The fort at Bukit Malawati was further strengthened and the area around the fort was lighted up so that enemies can be seen from the land and the sea. However the victory of the Dutch in Kuala Selangor does not mean that the war was over. In fact Sultan Ibrahim who had retreated to Pahang was building up his army. The Sultan’s followers who were left behind at Kuala Selangor made attacks on the Dutch. The followers of Sultan Ibrahim did not recognized the Dutch and Raja Muhammad Ali from Siak as their rulers. The Dutch tried to made peace with the followers of Sultan Ibrahim but failed.
On 27 July 1785, a year after the Sultan Muhammad Ali ruled Kuala Selangor, war broke out again in Kuala Selangor. Sultan Ibrahim came with 2,000 followers from Pahang to recapture Kuala Selangor. In Kuala Selangor, Sultan Ibrahim’s army build their defence fort at Permatang which was further strengthened when the people of Permatang joined the army. On the night of 27 July 1785, war broke out when Sultan Ibrahim launched a surprise attack on the Dutch. The Dutch were defeated the following morning and they fled from their forts in Kuala Selangor in their ships. On 28 June 1875, Sultan Ibrahim with the help of Pahang succeeded in capturing Kuala Selangor and Fort Malawati. The Dutch did not have the time to destroy the cannons in the fort. When Sultan Ibrahim passed away, he was buried at Bukit Selangor which is now known as Bukit Malawati whereas the Regent of Selangor was buried at Bukit Tanjung Keramat. Today, Bukit Malawati offers a panoramic view of the Selangor coast and the Klang Valley. Besides Fort Malawati, there are several other fascinating historical attractions such as the Altingsburg Lighthouse, the Royal Mausoleum, the fabled execution block, children’s playground, the legendary 100 steps and a quaint rest house.
The view from the peak of the hill is lovely. The entire delta can be seen. Much of the mangrove swamps still exist, lining the coastal plains like blue tint mascara; and right at the foot of the hill lies 497 acres of the Kuala Selangor Nature Park, which is a great place for bird watching and a nice place for a stroll in the evening. Just further to the right of the estuary is a small fishing settlement built on stilts sitting pretty, above the shallow waters. In the evenings, boats can be seen bringing in their catches for the day. The fishing village itself is a nice place to walk around. The sundry shops here sell all sorts of weird sea produce, mostly looking as though they had been flattened under steam rollers, slapped about and thrown onto the hot tarmac to soak in a bit of the 'local' flavour before being packed for the odd shopper or two. There are also a few seafood restaurants that serve up scrumptious seafood dishes although the standards of hygiene could be improved a couple of notches or so. Bukit Melawati also has a lighthouse and several old colonial houses built during the British days. Just round the corner from the viewpoint, and to the back of the lighthouse is a car park area. Several families of Silver-Leafed Monkeys and Long-Tailed Macaques hang around here for peanut handouts from visitors. The Silver-leafed babies have golden fur as compared with the adults of dull-ashen grey. These Monkeys are a delight - they are gentle and seem to always have a thank you for every morsel of food given. The long-tailed macaques, on the other hand, are generally a little more mischievous and if you turn your back for a second - you'd never know what they would do. Always be careful when feeding the monkeys. Although they have had many interactions with humans, we must remember that they are wild and wild animals tend to be erratic sometimes. Cars are allowed up the hill during weekdays. There is a one way road system that winds all the way up and then down some. For weekends you will have to park your vehicle at the bottom of the hill and walk up. There is a restaurant with a balcony overlooking the town area. It states that there are chalets and rooms for rent and we did enquire but as of now, only the restaurant is functioning. The tram runs up the hill during weekends only and costs RM1.00 for adults; children: free.
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31st Jan 2008
Hello my family in Birdforum, I would like to explain to you all that I blame all my problems on Clive Timmons. As you also know Birdforum has been very slow this month and to cap it all, my server crashed again. You would think my God would take pity on me and allow me to go birding. No way, he sent the rain to torment me, he allowed the rain to pelt down in torrents then the sky would clear and I would get excited and prepare to go out, then suddenly the rain would come down again. Time and again this would happen and you can imagine this has left me prowling around like a caged tiger. Then, what do you know, I manage to get into birdforam at last, and when going through all the hundreds of pictures I see one of our friend Clive Timmons. I know he is handsome and of course I was jealous but it was when I had finished writing a comment my stupid server crashed again. Now with no birding and the only memory I have of the birdforum is the handsome image of Clive's in my head. Talking about Heads, I was becoming a head case; I started seeing heads, big heads, Thick heads and headless wonders and just before I ‘head’-ed for the funny farm my staff shouted, “doctor there’s no more patients and its cloudy but no rain”. “Vzooooom” I was in my car and strolling along the path in my patch before you could blink an eye. Slowly I trudged along, breathing in all the fresh watered air and wading through all the (((poodles))). Then I saw not far away perched on the top of a tall tree, seven dark coloured birds. Without looking through the binoculars I knew they were the Black Baza’s, they have been here since the end of last October and every time I managed to get close enough they always flew away. This time six of them flew off but the seventh bird nosed dived into some stunted trees about a hundred feet away. Now I know my patch like the back of my hand and I knew just where that bird had landed and all I have to do is go to the right where there are two bush-like trees and behind that a half dead tree, and that is where I am sure the baza was sitting. Quickly I galloped to the bush, ducking between the bushes I had completely forgot about a low branch of another small bush behind the first two. I remember hearing a “thunk” sound, then the pain on my forehead and saw those “twinkling stars”. I was sitting on my backside in the wet earth but throughout these flashing moments, I remained conscious of the bird I was after, so I never made a sound and I slowly got up, and bending low I reached the tree where I could see the Baza was perched about thirty feet away and had his back to me. The bird was magnificent to me and when a stray ray of sunlight struck the birds back the sight was not only beautiful but fantastic. The problem I could see was that the birds head and neck were in the shade and the back was out of the shade. As I viewed the bird through the view-finder I noticed one dry twig sticking out from the bird's left and stopping just a few inches from its face and another twig from the right falling over it back. Beggars can’t be choosers I though and what’s a twig when a bird like this is in my sights. I took a couple of pictures and on the third one it turned and I got the picture I wanted. I swear I saw a startled look on it face as it flew off. The horrible headache I had before taking the picture had disappeared and I raised my hand in the air towards the bird and yelled, “YES, after three month I got you”. My patch shook with my shout and then the terrible pain came back to my head. Due to the twigs the picture isn’t that good and I don’t know how to edit them out. Clive I don’t think the bird is more handsome then you “lol”
Because of the lump on my head I called this picture, “Head's”. (The lump took some time to go away.)
Black Baza Aviceda leuphotos
5th Feb 2008
On Saturday after closing my practice I reached home at nine pm and the first thing my wife say's to me with a wink, “you are going birding to FRIM tomorrow because we have some girly things to do” I knew what the reason was and I gave her a big hug. Next morning I called Jason Tan and asked him if he would like to accompany me on a trip to the F.R.I.M. He said he would meet me there. When my walking brewery and I reached the reserve I received an s.m.s. message. I hate s.m.s probably because I don’t know how to read them. I gave the phone to my brewery and he deciphered it and he said, “Jason isn’t coming because he can’t start his car and is stuck in his mother-in-laws house. “HAVE A GOOD TIME JASON” “Ha-ha”.
We reached one of the isolated house's on the hill and saw a group of students in white aprons and as I was passing I heard one of them shout, “Manjeet” I turned and there was Professor Chan in the group. He is a professor in one of the private medical schools, a very expensive place. “Hi Chan what are you doing here”. “Collecting some plants for the botany class” he said, and then he turns around and shouts to the students, “Meet Dr Manjeet”. He then tells me, “this is first year class in the medical collage” Suddenly I hear a loud whisper “HE DOESNT LOOK LIKE A DOCTOR” and I noticed among the group of youngsters the one who had made the comment, she was a long thin, lean young lady with a pair of binoculars hanging around her neck. I asked her, “Why are you wearing those binoculars” and she said, “Sir, my dad is a new birder and I brought his binoculars with me because I also like to look at birds”. I turned to professor Chan and asked, “Have they witnessed any short cases yet”. “Yes indeed” he said, “and I hope to send at least two to you for their elective posting. “Can I ask them a question” “Yes, go ahead my friend”. “O.K. you people, what is B.O.P”. All of them had blank looks on their faces. Then the tall lean one lifted her hand and said. Bird Of Pray. “Shaking my head I started walking away and then Professor Chan said, “Manjeet I know the answer is wrong but would you care to tell them”. I continued walking for a moment, then turned and yelled, “It means Boil on the Penis”. The professor collapsed laughing and then his voice came back, hollow like, “the lean one will be at your practice in two years time Manjeet. I could still hear him laughing as we disappeared over the hill. We reached the back of the house and slithered down the hill into the thick jungle and waited there. Then I heard a light drumming sound and although it was a bit dark under the canopy I was delighted to see with wonder a female Checker-throated Woodpecker. I managed to get three pictures before it gave a loud, “Ki-eee” and took off. It is always a pleasure for me to see a woodpecker. By the way, neither of us saw a single leech during out stay in the jungle.
Checker-Throated Woodpecker ( Female). Picus mentalis
5th Feb 2008
After taking the second picture I decided to nail the identification and took this picture to post. Did I ever tell you about my burning feet on that morning. It was due to the last patient on Saturday, a patient who lives in Telor Gong and had been talking to a doctor he met in the jungle. The doctor prescribed the use of TIGER BALM rubbed on the feet to deter the leeches. Like an idiot I bought the biggest jar available and in the morning before leaving I smeared globs of it on my feet up to my knees and then covered with my socks. Half way to picking up my brewery, my feet and legs started burning, the blooming balm stings like fire. So you see this stupid Dr reached FRIM with his feet burning like they were on hot coals. But after about two hours the stinging stopped but you know! I didn’t have a single leech on me all day although I will not forget the burning for a very long time. Oh Admin, there is a pathetic picture of this bird by a Singh in Opus. Admin you shouldn’t allow pictures like this pleassssssssssseeeeee..lol.
Picus mentalis Picus mentalis
Throughout this thread I have had some difficult times editing Manjeets stories but I have to confess this story has to be the hardest of them all. I would like readers to go into Manjeets Threads to seek out this story and compare that original version to this one and tell me if I have interpreted correctly his true feelings. Thank you. Tanny

5th Feb 2008
In life there is happiness, joy, sadness, pain and laughter, a circle from which we cannot escape. Do you remember last Christmas Eve when I told you about my terminally ill thirty year old patient with three daughters, and as I was leaving he told me that this was the best Xmas he ever had. Well as I was getting ready to go birding at my patch, his wife rings me and say's, “Dr Manjeet can you come, I know you had come in the morning, but please come now”. I immediately forgot about birding and drove to their house and when arriving I saw the three little ones waiting at the door, they rush over to me and gave me a hug with tears in their eyes. The littlest one said, “Dr Uncle, Papa is no more, is he now free like birds”. I went down on my knees and hugged them and said, “Yes”. They then took me to their father lying on his bed. There was no loud whaling or sobbing, just silent tears flowing down their cheeks. I examined the father and told the grand mother and wife that he has indeed gone and we know he suffered a lot of pain but now he is free. I signed the death certificate and made to leave, but as I reached the door the eldest daughter said to me, “Does this mean Dr Uncle you won’t be coming again”. I turned and hugged the three of them again and said, “I promise I will come and visit you each week”. I went back to the practice and saw to the many various complaints of my patients but throughout the day the children's words kept ringing in my head. I have a question here; do we Doctors have a moral obligation to see patients after they leave us? Or for that matter, do friends and neighbors also have the same obligations. “YES, yes, I think they do. Because bereaved people need the support from everyone to get over the trauma of the loss. I made a promise to those little ones and I sincerely hope I can keep to that promise. It’s just a little of my time, time which the girls didn’t have with their father.
I think that each and everyone should make an effort to give support to those who are grieving over a loss of a loved one. How nice it would be if all of us could do this and what a wonderful world we would be living in. With my mind full of troubled thoughts, at four thirty I dashed off to my patch to purge my brain. It was very cloudy when I got there and to me it looked like the weather was also feeling sad. I made my way to my favourite place, under a tree on the river bank and after getting my kowa organised on the tripod I sat there and just looked at the swallows flying here and there over the water, snatching at flies and taking sips of water from the surface. Then a kind of inner peace came over me and as if in union with my soul, the clouds parted above and the sun hit the area where I was sitting. Suddenly two brilliant birds flew up and down the river and the sun reflected on their bright colors and I realized this wonderful portraiture of nature was actually, “THE COLOURS of LIFE”.
These Bee-eaters hawked up and down the fringes of the river searching for bees gathering pollen from the bank-side plants. Then one of them came and sat on a dead tree about forty feet away and when I looked through the scope I knew I had found my true colors of life. All the feeling of sadness and depression vanished and with a big smile I started taking pictures. I felt in my mind that I could read the birds thoughts, and it was saying, “Manjeet this is the Colours of Life”. Sometimes I feel one should know what we see and what we have to do and wonder if others could also do it and if they did then their life would be worth living also.
Blue-tailed Bee-Eater Merops philippinus
This is so true. When you have been bereaved you never forget people who have helped you.And then, eventually, the sun shines through. Just as it did for Manjeet after his selfless act in giving of himself.
Thank you for these, Tanny.
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