Birding Nabang, Yunnan (1) – 10,000 Birds

Apparently, traditionally there by no means was such a factor as a “Ius Primae Noctis” – one delusion in regards to the Center Ages that may be safely discarded, although different disagreeable points of that interval such because the very low stage of dental hygiene and the occasional peer strain to take part in a campaign are nonetheless legitimate. The closest the poor author of a weblog has to a “Ius Primae Noctis” is the precise to debate issues which can be completely irrelevant to the supposed matter of the weblog. Like for me, to speak in regards to the music “Kiss your lips” by Allo Darlin’, and to cite a few of the lyrics, resembling

“In a fairground in the course of Paris
You tried to show to me your manliness
By successful me a teddy bear”


“All the beautiful those that we meet
Eat natural and purchase inexperienced electrical energy
All the beautiful those that we meet
Are a lot extra profitable of their careers than me”

In fact, you’ll be able to simply skip this a part of the weblog and transfer to the half on Nabang birds. Nabang is a city in Yingjiang county, Yunnan province, China – it’s proper on the border with Myanmar (there truly is a border crossing roughly proper inside Nabang).

Let me begin by saying that I’m very glad that there have been no Japanese Tits at Nabang. So for as soon as, I should not have to provide you with any semi-funny, pseudo-pornographic jokes.

As an alternative, I can simply current one other hen, the Larger Coucal.

Apparently, Larger Coucal physique elements are used as conventional drugs by some rural Malays.

One other widespread means for these birds to die is on roads – a examine in a forest district in Maharashtra, India discovered that the Larger Coucal was probably the most dominant species discovered useless in highway car collisions.

When academics aren’t educating, what do they do? In Bangladesh, apparently, they conduct research like this one titled “The vertebrate fauna of the Academics’ Quarters-2 of Saidpur Cantonment Public Faculty and School, Nilphamari, Bangladesh”. And sure, they’ve Larger Coucals within the academics’ quarters.

There are a minimum of three totally different kingfishers at Nabang: The Widespread Kingfisher (a male – see the black decrease mandible [ornithologist speak for beak part] – this may be orange in a feminine – you may additionally see the marginally stern facial features of the hen, an expression of its want to specific its sturdy masculinity) …

Pied Kingfisher (a hovering male with the second, slimmer breastband that the females apparently consider as very horny) …

… and the White-throated Kingfisher (no concept which intercourse – I felt it was rude to ask. Although my experience relating to one other animal species – homo sapiens – leads me to imagine that this show-offish pose signifies a male hen).

Black-throated Sunbirds largely stay off nectar but additionally catch bugs and spiders to get ample protein, significantly when feeding chicks.

If you happen to suppose that the images proven listed here are inferior to those taken by Craig Brelsford and proven on his Shanghaibirding web site, I absolutely agree with you.

There are fairly a number of flycatcher species round right here – some colourful, some slightly boring.

The Brown-breasted Flycatcher is certainly within the first class. eBird calls it a “boring however slightly cute flycatcher”. Distinction this with the HBW assertion with its “we’re critical ornithologists” perspective: “Medium-sized, large-headed, olive-brown forest flycatcher”. I do know who I might slightly have a beer with (although the HBW individuals in all probability desire wine anyway, disgrace on them).

If you happen to hear a “sound like a department of a forest tree creaking within the wind”, perhaps you might have heard a Taiga Flycatcher – a minimum of should you belief the outline of its vocalization within the HBW. Possibly they do drink fairly a little bit of wine a minimum of often.

The Sapphire Flycatcher ought to clearly have employed a greater photographer – this picture makes the species look much less engaging than the subsequent one.

The Hill Blue Flycatcher might be probably the most engaging among the many flycatchers right here, although the HBW calls it “slightly unobtrusive”. I suppose they don’t imply the colours however slightly that it doesn’t play loud music subsequent to your bed room at evening.

The Latin species identify whitei is in recognition of the Australian Samuel Albert White (1870 – 1954) who Wikipedia describes as a “racehorse proprietor, soldier, explorer, conservationist and beginner ornithologist”. Possibly it will have made extra sense to call a racehorse after him than a hen species.

The richest Cattle Egrets in Nabang personal greater than 50 animals every and guard them rigorously.

Beneath is both a Bianchi’s Warbler or a Marten’s Warbler. Within the golden days of the previous, these two and 4 different species had been all simply mixed as Golden-spectacled Warbler.

Even eBird isn’t so certain that that is progress, describing Bianchi’s Warbler as “certainly one of quite a few mind-numbingly comparable Seicercus warblers”. The Russian Ornithologist Valentin Lvovich Bianchi (1857-1920) is accountable each for the English identify of the hen (his final identify) and the Latin identify valentini (his first identify). It appears his center identify Lvovich didn’t get used as a hen identify although [I did not make this bit up, honest!].

Unusually, eBird is far more optimistic about Marten’s Warbler regardless of admitting that it appears to be like virtually the identical: “A brilliant and engaging small warbler with many just about an identical relations”. Whereas the Latin species identify omeiensis sensibly refers to a location in China (Emei Shan), the English identify Marten appears to check with a Jochen Martens, a professor on the College of Mainz. It appears the cut up of the Golden-spectacled Warbler has given a number of modern ornithologists resembling him and Mr. Alstroem an opportunity to get their names into the checklists of birders. A bit embarrassing, I believe, although I’ve to confess I’ve not had an opportunity to refuse to have a hen species named after me but.

The swampy land round Nabang additionally appears to be good wintering floor for lapwings – particularly Gray-headed Lapwing

(for which a Japanese examine finds that Japanese “farmers ignore the existence of Gray-headed Lapwing“)

… and Pink-wattled Lapwing.

If in case you have mates who’re Pink-wattled Lapwings, inform them to learn the examine “The hatching success of ground- and roof-nesting Pink-wattled Lapwing Vanellus indicus in Haridwar, India”, or simply advise them to place their nest on a roof if attainable.

The Latin species identify of the Orange-bellied Leafbird is hardwickii. Within the Wikipedia entry on English naturalist Thomas Hardwicke, there may be the marginally unusual sentence “Hardwicke was not married however had three illegitimate daughters and two sons aside from two daughters born to an Indian mistress”. I normally have a tendency to not be overly politically right, however nonetheless this separate counting of daughters “from an Indian mistress” strikes me as a bit bizarre. Like there’s a rating: Kids inside marriage > illegitimate kids > kids from a neighborhood mistress.

At a spot known as Banyan Tree close to Nabang, one can see two parrotbill species. The Pale-billed Parrotbill has a invoice with a shade much like the parrotbill proven additional under however a really distinctive black eyebrow. So naturally, they didn’t identify it for that.

The species has mates in excessive locations – eBird calls it an “cute small parrotbill”

eBird additionally distinguishes it from the Rufous Headed Parrotbill: ” evaluate with bigger Rufous-headed Parrotbill, which doesn’t have a forehead mark”.

Extra on the Rufous-headed Parrotbill from eBird: “Very comparable in look to the smaller Pale-billed Parrotbill; search for the latter’s quick black eyebrow. Confusingly, each species are sometimes discovered alongside each other in combined flocks, sometimes with White-hooded Babblers.”

That is after all the right hyperlink to the White-hooded Babbler, which I certainly noticed in a flock with the 2 parrotbills. Not a really photographer-friendly hen although.

The hen’s identify is a bit unusual – HBW talks about its white head however a few of the birds I noticed had rufous slightly than white heads. Rebellious juveniles?

The Latin species identify rufulus (“reddish”) type of provides to the confusion.

The HBW entry additionally talks intriguingly about “temporary, edgy, subdued, conversational twangy ‘gyurt!’ notes”. Would love to listen to these. Good string of adjectives anyway.

I do not likely know whether or not these are Pale Martins or Sand Martins.

Whereas I can learn the HBW on this matter ([Pale Martin] “distinguished from comparable [Sand Martin] by paler and greyer upperparts, slightly dingier underparts with much less well-defined breastband”), I lack the birding IQ to use this to my images.

Thankfully, Barn Swallows look sufficiently totally different even for me.

For a hen particularly known as white, the White Wagtail has fairly a little bit of black in its plumage. Apparently, in Tim Birkhead’s e book “Birds and us” he mentions that in medieval instances, individuals averted consuming wagtails as their shaking tails reminded them of (and thus may need thought them to trigger) Parkinson’s illness. That is type of an inversion of the “Doctrine of Signatures” of vintage drugs, which states that vegetation much like particular physique elements are appropriate to deal with illnesses of those physique elements.

The HBW considerably unfairly calls the Yellow-bellied Warbler an “virtually featureless yellow-and-olive warbler” – I think the individual scripting this sentence has not spent a lot time with a few of the completely featureless leaf warblers in China. eBird is marginally much less destructive, calling the species “not particularly eye-catching”.

In distinction, for the Gray-headed Canary Flycatcher, eBird makes use of the catch-all time period “unmistakable”, although it doesn’t truly look that totally different to me.

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