Monday, 16 April 2012

Telegraph Road - Dire Straits

DICK ROGGEVEEN, BEN HEERINK & MARC BULTE
have turned out to be the 'Very Best' company anyone could ask for, and after last nights meeting they invited me to join them on their quest for more birds. It didn't take long to realise I was in eminent company, all having a great knowledge of the local avifauna along with keen eyes and ears. Not only that, their 'sense of humour' was directly along my trail and they were in no rush to score another point.

Having discussed the various birds we had seen and exchanging site information, they were happy to start at Jelai, which they agreed was an eye-opener, and then we return for breakfast.

LETCHUMY
Each day thus far there has been time to stop and talk to this lovely, bubbly and most friendly lady who looks after the immaculate public toilet and the surrounding garden. Today, on our way, was to be no exception and my new found friends where pleased to make her acquaintance as well.

MOUNTAIN IMPERIAL PIGEON
Seems like the Trio were already bringing me luck as virtually the first bird seen was the above. OK, at great distance and not much by way of 'record shot' but good views through the 'scope and a Lifer! The rest of the stay at this site was more of a mopping-up operation as many of the previously seen birds were performing much better for the camera.

Of these ORIENTAL MAGPIE ROBIN, previously very nervous, approach to a decent distance while

the male of VERDITA FLYCATCHER also decided to show itself.

It would seem I am unable to resist FIRE-TUFTED BARBET, and as we headed for breakfast I ventured that the only decent photograph that was missing was that of a

male LITTLE PIED FLYCATCHER.

Right on cue this little fella appeared along with his

'lady-friend' which was far bolder and at times closed to point blank range. Had the day ended there I would have been delighted, but the Flying Dutchmen had a treat in store as they drove me off to the TeleComms Loop at higher elevation.

There a couple of days previously they had come upon this seemingly abandoned garage which has been taken over by a colony of

video
GLOSSY SWIFTLETs which could be seen swirling passed the nest site at break-neck speed in an effort to feed their young.

All 3 had seen all there was to see here so kept away, while I limited my time at the bars to a few photographs and the 2 short clips of video shown here.

video
This had been a mega sight, to say the least and taking

just one last shot, I turned to find

this injured or more likely exhausted individual.

There looked to be no signs of damage

but offering a chance to fly it simply fluttered to the floor.

It was agreed to give it one more try by launching it to gain elevation,

but nothing would coax it to take to the wing. Eventually, we simply placed it away from the road and in the shade hoping that it might recover on its own. PS - I've now stopped being a teapot!

Next we found this extraordinary plant, rather resembling the fern of New Zealand, but the strange thing was when touched or shaded by a hand

the leafs all furled leaving what looked like a bare stalk.

Wild BANANAS were next, followed as promised by the 3 resident

presumed SQUIRRELS seen thus far

although this one does look a little CHIPMUNK like?

Unfortunately, the final one doesn't have such a happy ending as we watched it foraging for the bird-table overspill up at Jelai. At the hotel there are 4 SIAMESE Sp cats which look like 'killing machines' and today proved that they are.

In less than a blink, the cat was at the hapless Rodent and killed it dead with a single bite to the throat,

before carrying off to the bushes presumably again to eat it. I had asked myself the question "just how many birds (and other wildlife) do these felines take in a year"?

and once again we end with a few Moths. For any who think such creatures are only worthy of a 'clout around the ear' with a copy of the Times Colour Supplement, please turn away now, you'll be pleased to know there are only a few more photos left to publish!


2 comments:

  1. Nice photos, I remember many of those birds from my only visit in Fraser's Hill in 1995.

    Your last squirrel photo may actually not show a rodent at all, but a tree shrew.

    /Olle Pers

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  2. Thanks very much for your comment Olle. I am still struggling with the birds so the mammals will have to wait for my return to England, whenever that happens to be. Your info on the Shrew will at least have me searching in the right direction? With an average of 400 images per day, uploading and putting together the Blog it's a tall order but will keep plugging away.
    Thanks again and All The Best.
    Yours aye
    Bagsy

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