Sunset on the Fly River (Papua New Guinea)
After a day sweating through the swamp forests of Kwatu Lodge, where we had watched a glittering Hooded Pitta bounding along the forest floor; a luminous Red-bellied Pitta calling from a rainforest tree; and even watched a Blue Jewel-Babbler flying agitatedly from one side of the trail to another; we returned to Kiunga. The day before we had also enjoyed some quality PNG birds like hulking Southern Crowned Pigeons perched by the Elevala River; the "blood-and-snow" King Bird-of-Paradise dancing his way up and down a rainforest liana; opened with a male Twelve-wired Bird-of-Paradise working his chosen pole alongside the Fly River; and watched in amazement as on after another gl;orious kingfisher "paraded" in front of us: from the Common Paradise-Kingfisher that filled the scope, to the ultra shy Hook-billed Kingfisher that just sat there for as long as we wished, to the shy Little Paradise-Kingfisher that reminded us that truly herculean efforts are sometimes required to see these special birds. What a couple of days on the Fly River, one of the last great wildernesses on Earth.
13 September 2009
A Post-Seedsnipe Moment (Ecuador)
Having just been photographing a strange Ptarmigan like high Andean shorebird, the Rufous-bellied Seedsnipe, the group takes in the awesome sight of Volcan Antisana on a rare clear day up near Papallacta Pass in Eastern Ecuador (4000m high).
9 May 2009
Golden-winged Warbler draws birders to lakeshore (USA)
It was IMBD (International Migratory Bird Day), 10,000-15,000 birders were in town, and someone found a Golden-winged Warbler male, this was the result - birders packed the shore of Lake Erie trying to get a glimpse of this flashy warbler. Some did, many did not!
17 May 2009
Kirtland's Warbler "Twitch" (USA)
This was the scene just shortly after the Kirtland's Warbler was re-found after several fruitless hours at Magee, everyone intently focused on a single goal: to glass this rare bird of the Jack Pines. It is now an annual vagrant to Magee.
17 May 2009
More Kirtland's Chaos (USA)
This was the moment when Iain Campbell (Tropical Birding founder) was working hard to get the crowds on the bird. Everyone had the same single-minded focus - to get a sweet and countable look at the kirtland's Warbler, which had turned up at Magee Marsh. It is an annual vagrant there.
25 February 2009
Maria Arrives...(NW Ecuador)
This was the moment at the now world-famous "Antpitta Farm" near Tandayapa, when the star attraction, a superb ginger-breasted Giant Antpitta arrived (named Maria by the local farmer who has habituated it). Angel Paz the farmer has been working tirelessly to habituate a number of antpittas in his forest to unprecedented affect, allowing birders rare and close-up encounters with these rare rainforest creatures.
11 May 2009
Crowd seek an encouter with an Orange-crowned...(USA)
A group gather for one of the dullest of the US warblers, an outrageously confiding Orange-crowned Warbler that showed virtually underneath the boardwalk at Magee Marsh in Ohio.
9 May 2009
Chaos at "Crane Creek" (USA)
This was just moments after this excitable lot had just checked out a Black-billed Cuckoo in the trees above a packed boardwalk on International Migratory Bird Day. An estimated 15,000 people attended this event (this outlandish figure was taken from an official survey), could this be the biggest concentration of birders on the planet? Who says birding is dying out, you could not guess it from this hyped up crowd enjoying a good stock of warblers and other "Erien" migrants that day.(NB. Crane Creek State Park has now been re-named as Magee Marsh)
13 May 2009
This crowd on the magic Magee boardwalk are homing in on a roosting Whip-poor-whill, that chose to sleep just off the boardwalk, much to the glee of assembled photographers and birders alike. A couple of shots of the bird itself are in the US Non-warbler gallery.