Monday, 30 March 2015

A Day of Pratincole

Spring, spring, spring! It sure felt more like summer today though, high temperature at Long Valley does scare off some people. There weren't too many people there today, more cyclist then birders.

A spring migrant have returned! In the form of an Oriental Pratincole, Captain told me yesterday about his encounter with 70 individuals passing through his work place, and I thought there must be at least one here at Long Valley; I wasn't disappointed.

This one showed very well, my Dad spotted it from afar and we crept slowly towards it. Pratincoles are usually quite daring and bold, allowing you to creep right up to it, this one was no exception. It eyed us cautiously for a very long time. These birds have such great charisma, and are so much fun to look at. It wasn't until another group of photographers decided to approach it at the opposite side that it became quite uneasy and finally took flight. Here are some of my photographs, different photographs of the same pose! They don't move much.

Oriental Pratincole

Oriental Pratincoles are passage migrants in Hong Kong, passing through every Spring and Autumn. They are commonly found in open country farmland or dried ponds, such as those in Long Valley and Mai Po.

As Ching Ming Festival approaches (tomb sweeping festival), many people head up to their ancestral burial grounds to pay tributes to their ancestors, however, burning incense also lead to many bush of those were on a hill not far from Sheung Shui. Helicopters flew back and forth constantly.

Not much were present today, the Painted Snipes were very secluded as usual, but both males and a female showed "well" at the pond near Ho Sheung Heung, in well I meant "identifiable". Black-winged Stlits in good light always makes a great photograph though! A great observation was the starling "bathing party", where a flock of Silky Starling, Black-collard Starling and Crested Myna took turns washing themselves at a shallow puddle, very entertaining!

Black-winged Stilit

Starling Bathing Party!

Aim to get to Po Toi sometime next week...I hope!

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