Steve Happ Photography Ramblings and dissertations

February 29, 2020

Pasir Ris Park Birding

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 9:39 am

Pasir Ris Park

I got up late this morning and caught the subway to Pasir Ris. I luckily found a nasi lemak bungkus and wolfed that down. I could not find any coffee, so I did without for the meantime. I found the park and started walking towards the spots that Jeremiah from the BICA had told me about. I saw a bunch of birders clustered around a tree. I spotted the area that the Crested Goshawk had been seen but he was not around. So a young girl showed my this tree where a Spotted Wood Owl was snoozing. The other photographers were very friendly and helpful and there was a good spirit of camaraderie.

Spotted Wood Owl
Spotted Wood Owl (Strix seloputo)

Crested Goshawk
Crested Goshawk (Accipiter trivirgatus)

Crested Goshawk
Crested Goshawk (Accipiter trivirgatus)

Ashy Minivet
Ashy Minivet (Pericrocotus divaricatus)

Red Junglefowl  - male
Red Junglefowl (Gallus gallus) – male

Red Junglefowl  - female
Red Junglefowl (Gallus gallus) – female

Red Junglefowl  - white variation
Red Junglefowl (Gallus gallus) – white variation

There were some white “hybrids” hanging about with the normal Red Junglefowls. I found an article ( https://besgroup.org/2017/08/14/red-junglefowl-white-hybrid/ ) written by Thong Chow Ngian, that claims that it is a white hybrid. Others have suggested that it could be leucistic or albino. I have no idea.

House Crow
House Crow (Corvus splendens)

Black-naped Oriole
Black-naped Oriole (Oriolus chinensis)

Oriental Pied Hornbill
Oriental Pied Hornbill (Anthracoceros albirostris)

Scaly-breasted Munia
Scaly-breasted Munia (Lonchura punctulata)

Singapore bird list

Crested Goshawk (Accipiter trivirgatus)
Spotted Wood Owl (Strix seloputo)
Ashy Minivet (Pericrocotus divaricatus)
Stork-billed Kingfisher (Halycon capensis)
Oriental Pied Hornbill (Anthracoceros albirostris)
Red Junglefowl (Gallus gallus)
Asian Koel (Eudynamys scolopaceus)
Scaly-breasted Munia (Lonchura punctulata)
Black-naped Oriole (Oriolus chinensis)
House Crow (Corvus splendens)
Pink-necked Green Pigeon (Treron vernans)
Spotted Dove (Streptopelia chinensis)
Javan Myna

sin200229

February 28, 2020

Satay By The Bay

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 9:52 am

Gardens By The Bay – Singapore

I got up early this morning, before 7am and jumped on the subway to the Bayfront station. Gardens By The Bay is just what it sounds like. A fabulous bunch of gardens with pools and creeks. There are so many birds there, it is incredible. And some delightful otters.

 Common Flameback - female
Common Flameback (Dinopium javanense) – female

Common Flameback  - male
Common Flameback (Dinopium javanense) – male

Chinese Pond Heron
Chinese Pond Heron (Ardeola bacchus)

Malay Name: Pucung-Padi

Red Junglefowl  - male
Red Junglefowl (Gallus gallus gallus) – male

“The red junglefowl (Gallus gallus) is a tropical bird in the family Phasianidae. They are the primary progenitor of the domestic chicken (Gallus gallus domesticus), but the grey junglefowl, Sri Lankan junglefowl and green junglefowl have also contributed genetic materials to the gene pool of domestic chicken.” (wiki)

Red Junglefowl  - female
Red Junglefowl (Gallus gallus) – female

Red Junglefowl  - chick
Red Junglefowl (Gallus gallus) – chick

Yellow Bittern
Yellow Bittern (Ixobrychus sinensis)

Lesser Whistling Duck with chick
Lesser Whistling Duck (Dendrocygna javanica)

The Lesser Whistling Duck (Dendrocygna javanica) is an uncommon, resident breeder in Singapore. National status: Endangered. Global status: least concern.

White-throated Fantail
White-throated Fantail (Rhipidura albicollis)

Zitting Cisticola
Zitting Cisticola (Cisticola juncidis)

Black-naped Oriole
Black-naped Oriole (Oriolus chinensis)

Smooth-coated Otter
Smooth-coated Otter ( Lutrogale perspicillata )

Singapore bird list

Red Junglefowl (Gallus gallus gallus)
Pink-necked Green Pigeon (Treron vernans)
Javan Myna (Acidotheres
Black-naped Oriole (Oriolus chinensis)
Yellow-vented Bulbul
Oriental Magpie-robin (Copsychus saularis)
White-breasted Waterhen
White-throated Fantail (Rhipidura albicollis)
Lesser Whistling Duck (Dendrocygna javanica)
Olive-backed Sunbird
Brown-throated Sunbird
Black-crowned Night Heron
Yellow Bittern (Ixobrychus sinensis)
Chinese Pond Heron (Ardeola bacchus)
Zebra Dove
Zitting Cisticola (Cisticola juncidis)
Asian Koel
Common Flameback (Dinopium javanense)
Rose-ringed Parakeet (Psitticula krameri)
Grey Heron

sin200228

Taman Negara Gunung Mulu 2

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 7:23 am

Taman Negara Gunung Mulu 2

Day two at Taman Negara Gunung Mulu, Mount Mulu National Park. I was reluctant to get out of bed early as it had been cloudy and overcast early and not much was happening because of the crap weather. I went for a stroll around the park head quarters, and then had some breakfast. Then I sauntered up the track to the Treetops Tower again. I was rewarded with a couple of good birds, but the park has been a big disappointment. There are not a lot of birds or animals around. Morning, Tuesday, 25/2/2020.

Scarlet-rumped Trogon
Scarlet-rumped Trogon (Harpactes duvaucelii)

Rufous-tailed Tailorbird
Rufous-tailed Tailorbird (Orthotomus sericeus)

Greater Racket-tailed Drongo
Greater Racket-tailed Drongo (Dicrurus paradiseus)

Black-headed Bulbul
Black-headed Bulbul (Pycnonotus atriceps)

Red-throated Sunbird
Red-throated Sunbird (Anthreptes rhodolaema)

Moth or butterfly
Moth or butterfly

This moth was gliding. I had never seen that before. Or is it a butterfly?

squirrel
squirrel

Maybe it is a Prevost’s Squirrel. I am not sure.

Taman Negara Gunung Mulu bird list

Scarlet-rumped Trogon (Harpactes duvaucelii)
Rufous-tailed Tailorbird (Orthotomus sericeus)
Greater Racket-tailed Drongo (Dicrurus paradiseus)
Red-throated Sunbird (Anthreptes rhodolaema)
Black-headed Bulbul (Pycnonotus atriceps)
Little Green Pigeon (Treron olax)
Pink-necked Green Pigeon (Treron vernans)

mal200225

Taman Negara Gunung Mulu

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 7:02 am

Mulu National Park

I caught the Maswings plane from Kota Kinabalu yesterday. It was a twin-engine with propellers! Scary on take-off. And even scariers landing in the middle of the mountains and the jungle. I found my homestay and in the afternoon went for a walk looking for the mini-mart. I walked and walked but still did not find it. Lucky my homestay has instant noodles and peanuts. This morning I went early into the park and got the key for the treetop tower from security. I was up there for hours and only saw a few birds. Maybe it was bad weather today. Then I came back to the park building and had breakfast. After that I set off along the night-walk track and saw nothing. Luckily I spied a White-rumped Shama on the boardwalk just before cabins.

White-rumped Shama
White-rumped Shama (Copsychus malabaricus)

Green Broadbill  - male
Green Broadbill (Calyptomena viridis) – male

The Green Broadbill specialises in eating large fruits, which they can swallow whole with their wide gape. In Malay they are called Burung seluwit. (Phillipps)

Wallace's Hawk-eagle
Wallace’s Hawk-eagle (Spizaetus nanus)

Brown-throated Sunbird  - male
Brown-throated Sunbird (Anthreptes malacensis) – male

Prevost's Squirrel
Prevost’s Squirrel

Gunung Mulu National Park

Green Broadbill (Calyptomena viridis)
Wallace’s Hawk-eagle (Spizaetus nanus)
White-rumped Shama (Copsychus malabaricus)
Chestnut-breasted Malkoha (Phaenicophaeus curvirostris)
Brown-throated Sunbird (Anthreptes malacensis)
Oriental Magpie-robin
Barn Swallow
Eurasian Tree Sparrow
Pink-necked Green Pigeon

Prevost’s Squirrel

mal200224

February 22, 2020

North Borneo Railway

Filed under: General — Tags: — admin @ 4:08 am

Tenom to Beaufort Train Trip

I had been looking forward to this train trip for ages and I specifically went to Tenom to ride this famous train. It goes from Tenom in the hills of south-west Sabah to Beaufort, which is near the coast. Anyhow, here is the famous train at the station in Tenom.

Train to Beaufort
Train to Beaufort

You can hang out the window, take photos, smoke. No fancy rules here.

Going through the hills
Going through the hills

The train followed the Padas River most of the way down the hill.

Following the river
Following the river

The track is getting work done on it. They are putting new sleepers in and building up a section of the track where it goes around this hill. These boys were working on the construction. We had to get out of the train and walk past this section.

The railway workers
The railway workers

Hopped off the other train and then we got on this one waiting for us. The other people going the other way got off this one and hopped on ours.

Swapping trains
Swapping trains

The engine was pushing from the back, then went into a siding and switched to the front.

The train engine
The train engine

mal200222p

More Sabah Tourist Snaps

Filed under: General — Tags: — admin @ 1:33 am

Tourist Photos From Mt Kinabalu to Pulau Banggi.

This blog post starts off from Mount Kinabalu, where I spent about four days wandering about the lower tracks of the mountain.

Massive Moth
Massive Moth

This moth was huge. And it had snake heads at the ends of each wing. Hopefully to scare off predators.

Mount Kinabalu
Mount Kinabalu

Lots of people climb this every day. More than a hundred a day. And they pay massive amounts of money to do so. The mountain is more than four thousand meters high, I think.

Kota Kinabalu public wharf
Kota Kinabalu public wharf

All the water taxis gunning it against the side of the wharf, waiting to take passengers to the islands just off the town. It is mayhem.

Lion Dance
Lion Dance

It was Chinese New Year and they had the lion dancers at the Kota Kinabalu Mall. This kid is just getting into his lion costume.

Lions on stilts
Lions on stilts

The lion dancers climbed up on these poles and did all these stunts. The crowd loved it.

Kampung at Dragon Pearl Beach
Kampung at Dragon Pearl Beach

It is not really a kampung, more like a bunch of holiday houses built on the beach.

Dragon Pearl Beach
Dragon Pearl Beach

This is a view from the wharf. The tide went out for hundreds of meters, so the wharf was pretty much useless except at high tide. doh!

Tammoyo Place
Tammoyo Place

This is my hut on the beach on Banggi Island. It was pretty comfy. I had a couple of mattresses and electricity at night, so I was very content.

River near Kampung Nusa Nusa
River near Kampung Nusa Nusa

There were monkeys, otters and cows hanging out around this river mouth.

Caterpillar
Caterpillar

I liked this really colourful caterpillar that I found in the rainforest.

mal200222p

February 20, 2020

South West Sabah

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 5:38 am

Tenom Birding

I spent a couple of days in Keningau and went to the Crocker Ranges whilst there, to no avail. Yesterday morning I caught the bus here to Tenom, which is a coffee-growing area. I bought some tenom coffee in Kota Kinabalu so I already had some. I had to just go and buy some sugar from the supermarket across the road because they had none in the hostel. I am having instant noodles and coke for lunch, with a real coffee aterwards. But I digress. Yesterday afternoon and this morning I went for a walk on the outskirts of Tenom. Not much around but I found some Baya Weavers and their nest, so that was a bonus.

Baya Weaver
Baya Weaver (Ploceus philippinus)

Baya Weaver feed in grassland and build elaborate woven nests hung in tree colonies.

Baya Weaver
Baya Weaver (Ploceus philippinus)

Female or immature Baya Weaver.

Baya Weaver nests
Baya Weaver (Ploceus philippinus) – nest

Baya Weaver  nest entrance
Baya Weaver (Ploceus philippinus) – nest entrance

Spotted Dove
Spotted Dove (Geopelia chinensis)

Purple Heron
Purple Heron (Ardea purpurea)

Lesser Coucal
Lesser Coucal (Centropus bengalensis)

Squirrel
Squirrel

Tenom bird list

Baya Weaver (Ploceus philippinus)
Chestnut Munia (Lonchura atricapilla)
Scaly-breasted Munia (Lonchura punctulata)
Lesser Coucal (Centropus bengalensis)
Spotted Dove (Geopelia chinensis)
Zebra Dove (Geopelia striata)
White-breasted Woodswallow
Asian Glossy Starling
Pink-necked Green Pigeon
Purple Heron (Ardea purpurea)
Yellow-vented Bulbul
Oriental Magpie-robin
Olive-backed Sunbird
Cattle Egret
Ashy Tailorbird (Orthotomus ruficeps)

mal200220

February 18, 2020

Manado to Sandakan

Filed under: General — Tags: , — admin @ 12:04 pm

Tourist Photos from Indonesia to Malaysia

All these photos came from my phone. I lost the charger on my el cheapo point and shoot automatic camera, so I decided to chuck it away and just use my phone. I cannot see much difference. The image quality is probably a bit better but it is still pretty crap taking photos with the phone. I started off in Manado, in the north of Sulawesi.

Boat off Manado
Boat off Manado

I flew from Manado to Tarakan in Kalimantan, and then hopped on a speedboat to Nunukan, which is close to the border of Malaysian Sabah.

 Seaweed farming in Nunukan
Seaweed farming in Nunukan

Houses on water
Houses on water

This village was built over the water. I guess they have easy access to their boats.

Semporna public wharf
Semporna public wharf

These are the local taxis for the people who live on the islands nearby or in the villages built over the water along the shore.

Sunset at Pulau Mabul
Sunset at Pulau Mabul

Bajau traders
Bajau traders

These are Bajau, or sea gypsies. They live on their boats and travel between Sabah, Sulawesi and Mindanao. They are selling seafood.

Market at Lahad Datu
Market at Lahad Datu

Boat ride on the Kinabatangan River
Boat ride on the Kinabatangan River

I spent about four days on the Kinabatangan River and took lots of photos of monkeys and birds.

mal200130p

Taman Banjaran Crocker

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 7:37 am

Crocker Ranges National Park

I had to get the 7am big bus to Kota Kinabalu to get to the Crocker Ranges. I got dropped off at the park office which is nowhere near the entrance. There was a track leading up the hill so I took that one. It was either that or walk two kilometers up the road to the park entrance. I hate climbing hills. The track just went up and up and up. And there were hardly any birds that I saw. I could hear some but there were very few coming into view. It was a very frustrating morning. I gave up halfway up the hill and came back down again, had a cup of coffee at the cafe and waited for the bus back to Keningau. What a disaster! You have days like this. Taman Banjaran Crocker, 18/2/2020, morning.

White-crowned Shama
White-crowned Shama (Copsychus stricklandi)

Black-winged Flycatcher-shrike
Black-winged Flycatcher-shrike (Hemipus hirundinaceus)

Crocker Ranges National Park pathetic bird list

White-crowned Shama (Copsychus stricklandi)
black-winged flycatcher-shrike (Hemipus hirundinaceus)
Crimson Sunbird (Aethopyga siparaja)

mal200218

February 17, 2020

Pulau Banggi 6

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 1:04 pm

Banggi Island 6

I was reluctant to getup this morning but I dragged myself out of bed, had a dingo’s breakfast and headed down the road. I was glad that I did because I managed to get a fair photo of a Greater Coucal. I had a relaxing last morning at Banggi Island and finished off with a total of about 36 birds. Not great but there is not much information about the birds on this island.

Greater Coucal
Greater Coucal (Centropus sinensis)

White-throated Fantail
White-throated Fantail (Rhipidura albicollis)

Little Egret
Little Egret

Coming in for an emergency landing on the beach.

Common Iora
Common Iora (Aegithina tiphia)

Brown-throated Sunbird
Brown-throated Sunbird (Anthreptes malacensis)

Banggi Island bird list

Greater Coucal (Centropus sinensis)
Pink-necked Green Pigeon
Oriental Magpie-robin
White-throated Fantail
Common Iora (Aegithina tiphia)
Little Egret
Cattle Egret
Brown-throated Sunbird (Anthreptes malacensis)

mal200216

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