Steve Happ Photography Ramblings and dissertations

May 6, 2020

Birds from the wharf

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

Backyard Birding in Pulau Pangkor

These photos are all that I have taken in a week or so. I have taken photos of all the birds except the Black-naped Terns.

Black-naped Tern
Black-naped Tern (Sterna sumatrana)

These tern were out in the middle of the channel, about half a kilometer away. I was lucky to get a semi-usable photo. I thought they may have been White-winged Tern (Chlidonias leucopterus) but the good folk at #BirdTheFeckAtHome facebook group set me straight.

Black-naped Tern
Black-naped Tern (Sterna sumatrana)

Striated Heron
Striated Heron (Butorides striata)

House Crow
House Crow (Corvus splendens)

Whingeing in the rain.

Oriental Pied Hornbill
Oriental Pied Hornbill (Anthracoceros albirostris)

Javan Myna
Javan Myna ( Acridotheres javanicus )

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

A pair of Smooth-coated Otter frolicking around in the shallows near my guest-house. They are pretty wary, but. As soon as you stick your head out and they see you, they are off.

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

Pulau Pangkor bird list

Black-naped Tern (Sterna sumatrana) yes
Striated Heron (Butorides striata)
Eurasian Tree Sparrow (Passer montanus)
House Crow (Corvus splendens)
Oriental Pied Hornbill (Anthracoceros albirostris)
White-bellied Sea-eagle
Javan Myna ( Acridotheres javanicus )

Water Monitor , Biawak in malay.
Smooth-coated Otter ( Lutrogale perspicillata)

mal200506

April 21, 2020

Quarantine Island

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 2:54 am

Lockdown from the Backyard

These are some of the photos from the last few days here at Pangkor Island, Malaysia. I have seen most of these birds every day, it is almost like groundhog day. The only exception today was that I saw a pair of Collared Kingfishers.

Common Myna
Common Myna (Acridotheres tristis)

A very common bird and considered a pest in a lot of places.

White-bellied Sea-eagle
White-bellied Sea-eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster)

Just after catching a fish. I have been trying to get a shot of a sea eagle catching a fish. Still not quite there yet. I can do better.

Collared Kingfisher
Collared Kingfisher ( Todiramphus chloris)

This is the first time I have seen these around here.

Pacific Swallow
Pacific Swallow (Hirundo tahitica)

sunrise over the mainland
Sunrise

Amazing sunrise this morning. I should get up early more often.

Pangkor Island bird list

Pacific Swallow (Hirundo tahitica)
Common Sandpiper (Actitis hypoleucos)
Collared Kingfisher ( Todiramphus chloris)
Striated Heron (Butorides striata)
House Crow (Corvus spendens)
White-bellied Sea-eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster)
Eurasian Tree Sparrow (Passer montanus)
Common Myna (Acridotheres tristis)
Asian Glossy Starling (Aplonis panayensis)

mal200421

April 19, 2020

Two Islands

Filed under: General — Tags: — admin @ 3:58 am

Pulau Pangkor and Pulau Banggi

I have been in lockdown now in Malaysia for a month and it looks like continuing until the end of April at least. So, for something to do I dug out all the orphan files I took on my DSLR and here I present them to you.

Small boat
Small boat

This is a small fishing boat heading out to sea from Pulau Pangkor, on the west coast of mainland Malaysia, in the state of Perak. That is the mainland in the background.

Larger trawler
Larger trawler

These larger trawlers are made here on the island from wood. I can see a couple right now being built from my guesthouse.

Another trawler
Another trawler

Cleaning nets
Cleaning nets

This is the fish farm out the front of my jetty.

Monkey beach
Monkey beach

This is the beach on Banggi Island right at the tip of Sabah in the north.

Looking for shellfish
Looking for shellfish

At low tide, the locals would go out looking for shellfish on the reef just out from the river-mouth.

Fishermen at river-mouth
Fishermen at river-mouth

Looking for molluscs
Looking for molluscs

Dragging along the sand looking for what I call pippies.

April 15, 2020

Striated Heron Butorides striata

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 3:44 am

Pulau Pangkor in lockdown

“The striated heron (Butorides striata), also known as the little heron, is a small heron, about 44 cm tall. Striated herons are mostly non-migratory. Their breeding habitat is small wetlands in the Old World tropics from west Africa to Japan and Australia… This bird was long considered to be conspecific with the closely related North American species, the green heron, which is now usually separated as B. virescens, as well as the lava heron of the Gal├ípagos Islands (now B. sundevalli).”

Striated Heron
Striated Heron (Butorides striata)

“Adults have a blue-grey back and wings, white underparts, a black cap, a dark line extends from the bill to under the eye and short yellow legs. Juveniles are browner above and streaked below.

These birds stand still at the water’s edge and wait to ambush prey, but are easier to see than many small heron species. They mainly eat small fish, frogs and aquatic insects.” (wiki)

Striated Heron
Striated Heron (Butorides striata)

mal200415

April 13, 2020

Quarantine Birding 2

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

Sungai Pinang Kecil – Pulau Pangkor

More backyard birding from my wharf. The same birds have been turning up day after day, so it is a bit like groundhog day. I am trying to get a bit more detail out of my photos and get something different or unusual.

Oriental Pied Hornbill - portait
Oriental Pied Hornbill (Anthracoceros albirostris) – portrait

This male Oriental Hornbill hangs around the guest house most evenings waiting for a feed. They seem to eat fruits and small lizards from what I have seen. There is a female and a young one but I have not seen them yet.

Oriental Pied Hornbill - eyebrows
Oriental Pied Hornbill (Anthracoceros albirostris) – BCU

Check out the eye-brows on the same bird. Amazing. I have never noticed anything like that before.

Oriental Pied Hornbill - male
Oriental Pied Hornbill (Anthracoceros albirostris)

And a standard shot of him on the roof next door. There are so many Oriental Pied Hornbills on this island. I reckon there might be a hundred or more. But that is just a wild guess.

White-bellied Sea-eagle
White-bellied Sea-eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster)

There are heaps of White-bellied Sea-eagles circling around all day. I counted about six at one time, all circling over the water. They seem to catch lots of fish, so I do not think they go hungry. I have no idea what this guy has caught. It sorta looks like a crab but sorta not. doh!

White-bellied Sea-eagle
White-bellied Sea-eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster)

House Crow
House Crow (Corvus spendens)

House Crows are quite common. They hang around the wharf squwarking and carrying on.

Pulau Pangkor bird list

House Crow (Corvus spendens)
Oriental Pied Hornbill (Anthracoceros albirostris)
White-bellied Sea-eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster)
Striated Heron (Butorides striata)

mal200413

April 11, 2020

Quarantine Birding in Malaysia

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 7:27 am

Backyard Birding in Pangkor

It has been three weeks since I have taken any photos. I have been locked down in Malaysia since the 18th March and the Movement Control Order has been extended until the end of April. I have moved to another guest house down the road which is on the waterfront, so I can go out on the wharf and take some photos of the birds around my backyard, which is the ocean.

Asian Glossy Starling  - adult
Asian Glossy Starling (Aplonis panayensis) – adult

Asian Glossy Starling  -  juvenile
Asian Glossy Starling (Aplonis panayensis) – juvenile

Brahminy Kite
Brahminy Kite (Haliastur indus)

White-bellied Sea-eagle
White-bellied Sea-eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster)

Pacific Swallow
Pacific Swallow (Hirundo tahitica)

You can tell them apart from the Barn Swallow because the Pacific Swallow has no dark blue chest band.

Common Sandpiper
Common Sandpiper (Actitis hypoleucos)

Striated Heron
Striated Heron (Butorides striata)

Also called the Little Heron in South-east Asia sometimes.

Pangkor Island bird list

White-bellied Sea-eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster)
Brahminy Kite (Haliastur indus)
Striated Heron (Butorides striata)
Common Sandpiper (Actitis hypoleucos)
Asian Glossy Starling (Aplonis panayensis)
Eurasian Tree Sparrow (Passer montanus)
Pacific Swallow (Hirundo tahitica) no dark blue chest band
Barn Swallow (Hirundo rustica)
Spotted Dove (Streptopelia chinensis)
House Crow (Corvus spendens)
Oriental Pied Hornbill (Anthracoceros albirostris)

mal200411

March 22, 2020

Malaysian Tourist Photos

Filed under: General — Tags: — admin @ 6:45 am

Singapore to Pulau Pangkor

After a few days bird-watching in Singapore, I headed north to Mersing, then east towards Melaka, Port Dickson, and then north to the Cameron Highlands, and I am now at Pangkor Island.

Mersing
Mersing

The river at Mersing. From here the boats go to Pulau Tioman.

Old Ship
Old Ship

An old ship replica at Melaka. I think it is a museum inside.

Hindu celebration
Hindu celebration

In Melaka I discovered a festival. I had no idea what it was for.

Smashing Coconuts
Smashing Coconuts

Everyone was having fun smashing coconuts on the road. It looked like fun.

Melaka River Cruise
Melaka River Cruise

A lot of the houses were colourful along the river. The cruise along the river cost thirty ringgit for foreigners.

A trawler docked at Little Penang kampung
A trawler

There were so many trawlers docked near where I am staying in Pulau Pangkor. Fishing is a big industry here.

Abandoned Resort in Hutan Lipur
Abandoned Resort

There were so many abandoned resorts on Pulau Pangkor. I have no idea why. This one was right next to the beach and had a beautiful jungle right behind it.

A beach on Pulau Pangkor
A beach

This is Teluk Nipah. There are a few beaches along this side of the island. I went for a swim at one and about chest height the bottom turned to mud. I was not impressed.

Rain from my guest house
Rain from my guest house

In the morning it was drizzling a little bit and later I heard thunder in the distance. Luckily I made it back to shelter before it starting pouring rain.

Ghost ship Coming out of the fog
Ghost ship

Coming out of the morning fog.

Heading for dock at Sungai Pinang Kecil
Heading for dock

It turned out it was not a ghost ship after all. Just a foggy morning.

mal200322p

March 21, 2020

Pangkor Island 5

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 9:06 am

Pulau Pangkor – Teluk Nipah

Yesterday afternoon I went up to the mountain between Sungai Pinang Kechil and Teluk Dalam. I stopped a few times and was rewarded with some good views of Cream-vented Bulbuls. This morning I went to Teluk Nipah and walked along the track to the waterfall. Not much there and it started to rain a little bit. Lucky I got back early beacause it poured later on.

Great Hornbill
Great Hornbill (Buceros bicornis)

I think this one might be a male. I mistook it for an Oriental Pied Hornbill. Lucky I checked in the book. The last one i saw was in periyar, Kerala, india in 2017.

Cream-vented Bulbul
Cream-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus simplex)

The Malay Name is Merbah Mata Putih. You cannot mistake these ones with the huge white eyes.

Cream-vented Bulbul
Cream-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus simplex)

Red-eyed Bulbul
Red-eyed Bulbul (Pycnonotus brunneus)

Olive-winged Bulbul
Olive-winged Bulbul (Pycnonotus plumosus)

Thick-billed Green Pigeon
Thick-billed Green Pigeon (Treron curvirostra)

White-bellied Sea-eagle
White-bellied Sea-eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster)

grey glider
grey glider

Not its real name. They are grey and they glide so gracefully.

Pulau Pangkor bird list

Great Hornbill (Buceros bicornis)
Cream-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus simplex)
Olive-winged Bulbul (Pycnonotus plumosus)
Red-eyed Bulbul (Pycnonotus brunneus)
Yellow-vented Bulbul
Thick-billed Green Pigeon (Treron curvirostra)
White-bellied Sea-eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster)
Striated Heron (Butorides striata)
Common Hill Myna (Gracula religiosa)

mal200321

March 20, 2020

Pangkor Island 4

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 8:15 am

Pulau Pangkor – Hutan Lipur

I grabbed my rental motorbike at about 8am and set off around the island pas Telok Dalam to Hutan Lipur, a bit of forest that has been forgotten about with a wrecked road and a resort at the end of it that is deserted. After that, I kept going to Telok Nipah and found a few more birds. Nothing new today, it was actually a bit of a dud. But you never know.

Striated Heron
Striated Heron (Butorides striata)

The striated heron (Butorides striata) is also known as mangrove heron or little heron.

Pacific Swallow
Pacific Swallow (Hirundo tahitica)

Common Hill Myna
Common Hill Myna (Gracula religiosa)

Oriental Pied Hornbill
Oriental Pied Hornbill (Anthracoceros albirostris)

Dark-necked Tailorbird
Dark-necked Tailorbird (Orthotomus atrogularis)

You would not know that this photo was out of focus, would you? Unless I told you.

Pulau Pangkor bird list

Striated Heron (Butorides striata)
Olive-winged Bulbul (Pycnonotus plumosus)
Yellow-vented Bulbul
Olive-backed Sunbird
White-bellied Sea-eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster)
Brahminy Kite
Pacific Swallow (Hirundo tahitica)
Brown-throated Sunbird (Anthreptes malacensis)
Common Hill Myna (Gracula religiosa)
Dark-necked Tailorbird (Orthotomus atrogularis)
Purple Heron (Ardea purpurea)
Oriental Pied Hornbill (Anthracoceros albirostris)

Resources: Black-crowned Night Heron Identification.

mal200320

March 19, 2020

Pangkor Island 3

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 8:58 am

Pulau Pangkor 3 – Telok Dalam

I got on the motorbike early this morning and I had got to a track just after the sun would come up. The only problem was it was overcast so there were not that many birds around. Eventually after doing a lot of searching I came up with a couple of new birds and some relatively decent photos. So the morning was not a complete waste.

Forest Wagtail
Forest Wagtail (Dendronanthus indicus)

“The Forest Wagtail (Dendronanthus indicus) is a medium-sized passerine bird in the wagtail family Motacillidae. It has a distinctive plumage that sets it apart from other wagtails and has the habit of wagging its tail sideways unlike the usual up and down movements of the other wagtail species.” (wiki)

Forest Wagtail
Forest Wagtail (Dendronanthus indicus)

From the side, showing the two white wing stripes. From the front, they have two black bands.

Van Hasselt's Sunbird
Van Hasselt’s Sunbird (Leptocoma brasiliana)

Van Hasselt’s Sunbird used to be considered a subspecies of the purple-throated sunbird. The Malay name is Kelicap Belacan Biasa.

Van Hasselt's Sunbird
Van Hasselt’s Sunbird (Leptocoma brasiliana)

From the front showing the layers of colours.

Changeable Lizard
Changeable Lizard (Calotes versicolor)

Also known as the oriental garden lizard or the eastern garden lizard.

Long-tailed Macaques
Long-tailed Macaques

They used their tails to balance as they walked along the tight-rope wire.

Pulau Pangkor bird list

Forest Wagtail (Dendronanthus indicus)
Van Hasselt’s Sunbird (Leptocoma brasiliana)
scarlet-backed flowerpecker (Dicaeum cruentatum)
common tailorbird (Orthotomus sutorius)
Olive-winged Bulbul (Pycnonotus plumosus)
Yellow-vented Bulbul
Olive-backed Sunbird
White-bellied Sea-eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster)
Brahminy Kite

mal200319

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