Birding Nabang, Yunnan (2) – 10,000 Birds

Search for Nabang on a map of China – it’s actually on the finish of a street. As regular, birds appear to love these off-the-way locations greatest – eBird lists 337 species based mostly on somewhat extra than simply 100 checklists. It’s also certainly one of these locations the place the native police appear to be allowed to make up their very own guidelines – which can result in restrictions for foreigners. Going with a Chinese language buddy or information is thus really helpful.

Whereas the HBW describes the bulbul household as “typically slightly plain”, I discover them often fairly engaging, although in an understated approach that won’t enchantment to the flashiness-seeking HBW authors. Just a few examples: the Ashy Bulbul


Black Bulbul


… and the Gray-eyed Bubul.


One very annoying side of the HBW is that of their search field, they appear to require you to place in precisely the one species title they suppose is the one acceptable one. So if for instance, you search for Asian Pied Starling, you get “No matches” though that is the precise title used on a number of different hen pages and in lots of hen guides. Solely by trying up the Latin title first you will see that there’s a HBW entry for the species titled Indian/Javan/Siamese Pied Myna.

Really, it seems that (as hinted at by the clumsy HBW species title) this isn’t truly one however three species, certainly one of which (Java) might be already extinct within the wild (the miserable title of the research is “Newly described species is already extinct within the wild”).

Given the situation, those proven in my pictures ought to be the Indian Myna.

It’s sort of laborious to discover a motive to incorporate an awesome track about same-sex marriage in a weblog on Nabang birds. I’m paralyzed simply desirous about do it. “Evaluation Paralysis”, Jen Cloher. “Now the kangaroos are ingesting from the pool” (Jen is from Australia).

The Vinous-breasted Starling seems like matter for an formidable Ph.D. pupil, because the HBW notes “its biology, together with nesting ecology, is poorly identified, with no devoted research, and a lot of the comparatively scant printed info is drawn from anecdotal observations”.

It appears fairly engaging, too.

And spending a while in Nabang ought to be good too, although most likely not an possibility for foreigners (I as soon as received instructed by the native police to depart the place, with the bizarre rationale that “the place shouldn’t be secure for foreigners”).

The title Drongo comes from the language of Madagascar, the place it’s used for a neighborhood species – the phrase is now used to call an entire hen household. Curiously, in Australian slang “drongo” additionally means an incompetent or silly particular person, which is seemingly derived from the title of an Australian racehorse of the Twenties which constantly completed final or close to final (supply). Australian readers, are you able to verify or dispute?

The Black Drongo is a quite common member of the household. In a single research, the hen used electrical energy traces as a perch in 63% of all hunts, which makes me marvel how the hen survived earlier than there have been energy traces.

This Lesser Racket Tailed Drongo is a playing addict and sadly misplaced certainly one of its rackets after placing an excessive amount of cash on a racehorse named Drongo. It thought the title sounded fortunate.

The Bronzed Drongo should be a little bit of a romantic at coronary heart – the HBW stories it as “singing on moonlit nights in Thailand”.



On this submit, the Blue bearded Bee-eater solely has a cameo function …

… because the actions of a pair of Inexperienced Bee-eaters had been rather more photogenic.

some clouds collectively.

Speaking concerning the newest ebook releases.

Courtship feeding



Listening to a James cowl model collectively (The Pains of Being Pure at Coronary heart, “Laid”).




Apparently, the Burmese Shrike reminded the one that gave it its Latin species title colluroides of the Crimson-backed Shrike present in Europe (that one is Lanius collurio, and the –oides within the title of the Burmese Shrike is greek for “resembling”, as for instance within the phrase “humanoid”).

I’m positive you weren’t questioning about this, however the phrase “paranoid” doesn’t imply one thing resembling a “paran” (no matter that is likely to be) – it’s made up of the 2 Greek phrases “para” (irregular) and “noos” (thoughts). Come to 10,000 Birds, the place all of your unasked questions are answered.

Not simply me but additionally eBird calls the Lengthy-tailed Broadbill “a gaudy, cartoonish-looking hen”.




 Lengthy-tailed broadbills in Nonggang primarily construct their nests on energy traces (88.5%, supply),  which once more makes me marvel how the hen survived earlier than there have been energy traces.

Lengthy-tailed Broadbill picture within the ready-to-use bookmark model:



For different examples of cartoon birds, see right here.

Have you ever ever began writing a paper by simply copying an older one after which step by step altering it? I definitely have.

So have Vinaya Kumar Sethi and Dinesh Bhatt. One in every of their papers, “Provisioning of younger by the Oriental Magpie-robin” begins with the next sentence:

“Data on provisioning habits of birds within the Indian subcontinent is sort of negligible”.


Then, confronted with the problem of developing with a primary sentence for the paper “Nesting success of the Oriental Magpie-robin in nest containers and tree cavities”, they write

“Data on the nesting success of birds within the Indian subcontinent is sort of negligible”.


The Latin title of the Pale-headed Woodpecker, granti, might be derived from an individual named Grant, however no person appears to know which Grant that’s (not less than the HBW doesn’t know). It appears as if the hen already had this title round 1845, by which period Ulysses S. Grant had nearly graduated from West Level and was nonetheless a great distance away from being a US president, so it will need to have been one other Grant.

Upon seeing the species, the primary impulse of the eBird author appears to have been to name a health care provider – the species is described as an “odd-looking woodpecker with a … sickly-looking pale head”.

“Are you okay, Mr. Woodpecker? Ought to I name an ambulance?”

Whereas eBird thinks that the Crimson-billed Scimitar Babbler has a “brilliant crimson invoice”, the HBW goes for “invoice orange to orange-red”. In all probability wars have been fought about smaller disagreements, although I might be hard-pressed to provide you an instance now. Regardless that I often aspect with eBird (they appear extra human to me, see the woodpecker description above), on this case, the HBW description most likely makes extra sense.

This slightly form Streak-breasted Scimitar Babbler invited me to hitch it for its meal – I had simply eaten, so I politely declined.

In comparison with different pipits, Richard’s Pipit to me at all times appears a bit prefer it has richer dad and mom and a barely condescending perspective.

I assume in precept the “Richard” within the species title ought to be pronounced in a French approach, because the hen is known as after the French naturalist Charles Richard (1745–1835), director of postal providers at Lunéville. Undecided whether or not anybody does that although.

In keeping with Wikipedia, “Scarlet is a brilliant crimson coloration, typically with a barely orange tinge … it’s one-quarter of the way in which between crimson and orange.” This appears to use properly to the male Scarlet Minivet.


The feminine is a unique story.

If – like me – you suppose that this Striated Yuhina appears cute and engaging, I’m afraid that the HBW disagrees with you – they name the species a “small, uninteresting yuhina”. Perhaps they’d be higher off watching TV than watching birds.

What you see within the picture is the grey-headed subspecies – a Latin speaker would most likely be a bit puzzled by this because the Latin species title is castaniceps, “chestnut-headed”. No factors for guessing what the top coloration of the nominate subspecies is.

Presumably, it is a feminine White-browed Piculet, because it lacks the male’s “brilliant yellow patch on the brow” (eBird).

Considerably surprisingly (not less than to me), one paper describes the White-browed Piculet as a disturbance-tolerant species. I point out this primarily to have the ability to provide the title of the web site headline: “Damning Proof of Dam’s Impacts on Rainforest Birds”. In comparison with that, a few of my wordplay shouldn’t be as dangerous as you thought.

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