Tag Archives: Cattle Egret

Cattle Egret (Bubulcus ibis) near Camperduin/ Noord Holland

KuhreiherA small road and a deep ditch are one of the ingredients of a birdwatching trip in Noord-Holland. Right now, an additional add-on is the sighting of a Cattle Egret (Bubulcus ibis). This Egret is rare in middle Europe but a common inhabitant of southern Europe. If you want to save time and distance you might try to look for this nice egret in a Nature reserve at the coast of Noord Holland near Camperduin.

During year end this egret stayed in the Harger- en Pettemerpolder, a reserve quite recently established to protect habitats for waders, ducks and geese. Narrow and windy roads along deep ditch pass the area. The Cattle Egret could be seen the first day on a wet meadow in some distance. On the way back, the egret was gone. Lucky man, I thought and only chose the road by accident the next day. This time the egret was standing right to the side of the road allowing for the image of the blog. And also on the next day the bird was there. This time standing in the garden of a small farmhouse together with a Herring Gull (Larus argentatus). The whole time I saw the egret in search of food, but could not see on what prey it was feeding. But obviously the habitat provided for enough food to stay for several days.

In general, the whole area in Noord-Holland is excellent for bird observations. E.g. an adult Lesser Yellowlegs (Tringa flavipes) could be observed north of Callantsoog in the newly established nature reserve “The Nollen van Abbestede” in June 2013. Again, there was a notice on www.waarneming.nl, that someone reported that a Continue reading Cattle Egret (Bubulcus ibis) near Camperduin/ Noord Holland

Ein Kuhreiher in Noord-Holland

KuhreiherEine Meldung in www.waarneming.nl verhieß eine schöne Abwechslung in dem auch ansonsten nicht gerade (vogel-)artenarmen nordholländischen Küstenstreifen. Ein Kuhreiher (Bubulcus ibis) war in einem ausgedehnten Wiesenvogelreservat gesichtet worden. Kleine Sträßchen durchziehen die Gegend nördlich der stark von Touristen frequentierten Gemeinde Camperduin bei Bergen. Der erste Anlauf war insofern erfolgreich, daß ein weißes Etwas auf einer Wiese gesichtet wurde. Und das auch noch von einem Nicht-Birder. Gleich ein Volltreffer! Wobei man sagen muß, daß es ansonsten auch keinen Mangel an weißen Vögel gibt, denn die Möwen sind ausgesprochen kopfstark vor allem mit Sturmmöwen (Larus canus) und Silbermöwen (Larus argentatus) vertreten. Aber das war eindeutig der Kuhreiher. Der gelbe Schnabel, das helle Auge und die geduckte Haltung unterstrich seinen grimmigen Gesichtsausdruck. Für ein Foto war der Reiher aber doch zu weit entfernt. Auf dem Rückweg war der Reiher dann auch verschwunden und ich vermutete, daß man es wohl bei einer Beobachtung belassen müßte. Am nächsten Tag führte uns der Ausflug in die überschwemmten Wiesen von Petten and Hardingerpolder. An fast der gleichen Stelle stand diesmal der Kuhreiher keine 20 Meter von der Straße entfernt auf einer Wiese. Diesmal mußte ich dann doch ein Foto schießen. Eine solche Gelegenheit darf man sich nicht entgehen lassen. Die Straße ist allerdings sehr eng und rechts und links droht sofort der Absturz in einen Entwässerungskanal.  Zum Glück war der Verkehr sehr schwach, sodaß die Fotos zu keinem Verkehrsstau führten. Am Continue reading Ein Kuhreiher in Noord-Holland

Little Egret at Ponta Delgada, Flores

SeidenreiherA white bird standing calm near the sea. It is the Little Egret (Egretta garzetta). A small heron. As you would expect from a heron, this bird is beautiful, graceful and shows long legs, neck and beak. A solitary and patient fisherman, the bird is waiting for low tide to make ambushes in still waters on the rocks. On other occasions, the Little Egret risk more and hunt patiently near the surf. As its name indicates this heron is small, of dimensions clearly inferior to Grey Heron (Ardea cinerea) and the Great Egret (Casmerodius albus). Compared with the herons that regularly visit the Azores, only Cattle Egret (Bubulcus ibis) is smaller than the Little Egret.

All its feathers are white and limpid. On the chest they are longer and form a tuft, in a kind of bib. Also on the back of the head you can see two elongated plumes, but only during the breeding season. Its beak is black and straight and the eyes are yellow. The legs are also black, but the toes, quite characteristic, are bright yellow.

In case of doubt in the identification of this species in the field it is to be remembered that both the Great Egret (Casmerodius albus) and the Cattle Egret have the yellow beak. Although the legs are all Continue reading Little Egret at Ponta Delgada, Flores

Schieferfalken am Roten Meer in Süd-Ägypten

SchieferfalkeEin Stoß aus dem blauen Abendhimmel. Braune Federn in der Luft. Der Zusammenstoß dauert nicht lange. Dann ist das Spektakel auch schon vorbei und der Falke in den niedrigen Mangroven verschwunden. Wieder hat ein ziehender Singvogel sein Leben ausgehaucht. Ein Schieferfalke (Falco concolor) hat wieder mal unweit seines Brutplatzes zugeschlagen.

Ein Ausflug zum Wadi el-Gemal Delta beginnt an einem „Parkplatz“. Bäume, Palmen, dichte Vegetation und sogar eine Info-Tafel. Hier hat man sich mal Mühe gegeben. Aber dann ist wohl das Geld ausgegangen. Schade, denn die Gegend hätte  mehr Aufmerksamkeit verdient. Aus einem Palmenhain scheuchen wir 5 Nachtreiher (Nycticorax nycticorax) auf. Wunderschön ist dann unser erster Schieferfalke herüber fliegend zu sehen. Es ist sehr windig und dabei trotzdem heiß. Am Strand, der erstaunlich steinig ist, treiben sich etliche Reiher herum. Es scheinen vor allem Continue reading Schieferfalken am Roten Meer in Süd-Ägypten

Adventure: driving to the Keoladeo National Park

Sarus Crane, pair on field

It is November. A trip to Arunachal Pradesh in north-eastern India is scheduled. Due to delays in domestic flights I find out, that there are still three days left . Now you can spend the time in New Delhi, the capital of India, of course. According to some strange statistics the human population of New Delhi barely exceeds 250,000 people, but there are still at least several million in the Delhi area. Nature must stand back there. Nevertheless, there are practically some interesting areas within the city limits, such as Sultanpur, and in the vicinity is also Keoladeo, a national park in the Indian state of Rajasthan, which has been object of a blog on www.bird-lens.com already.. It is also known as Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary. The national park is not too far south of the city of New Delhi. Since I had already read about this bird paradise, I opted for the Keoladeo Ghana Bird Sanctuary.

From Germany, the first part of the trip went to Amman, then after a stopover to New Delhi. Actually I had arranged with the hotel directly located at the park entrance – the Birder’s Inn – that I get a lift from the airport at additional costs. The Birder’s Inn is quite recommended on the Internet for a stay in the area. When I accomplished the passport control, baggage claim and the retriev of money in Indian currency at an ATM, I must go and look for a taxi to Bharatpur. The pick-up service is in fact not there. A taxi agent speaks to me. I start in a bargain and get him down to 3,500 IR – this is roughly 42,- Euro – for the one-way driving southward. Then I think to use the morning hours for some more birding nearer to the airport. That is still on the way and a good location might be Sultanpur. Ok, that for additional costs. So in total now again Continue reading Adventure: driving to the Keoladeo National Park

Keoladeo National Park, a paradise also for Western Palearctic birds

White-throated Kingfisher (Halcyon smyrnensis)Is it possible to combine business and birding in India? The country is large, the distance too and most business is performed in a metropolitan area – New Delhi. Although supposedly in the area of New Delhi only 250,000 people live after the Indian census of 2011, but there are at least several million in the greater Delhi area . Nature must stand back there. Nearby , however, is Keoladeo . According to wikipedia is a national park in the Indian state of Rajasthan. Keoladeo is also known as Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary or Keoladeo Ghana Bird Sanctuary. The National Park is located about 50 km west of Agra near the town of Bharatpur and not too far south of the city of New Delhi, the capital of India. As a business trip to New Delhi allowed for a few days off for birding, I opted for the Keoladeo Ghana Bird Sanctuary.

From Germany first the trip went to New Delhi. I stayed in the city, had four grueling days in business meetings with constantly running air conditioning in darkened rooms and then went on a weekend to my well-deserved relaxation destination, the Keoladeo National Park in Bharatpur. But before the bird’s enjoyment there are more exhausting times to cope with. Although there are only about 200 km to the Keoladeo Ghana Bird Sanctuary. But they are strenuous. At least 3 hours – rather 4 hours – you are traveling on dusty, crowded highways in almost constant traffic jam. But then you’re on your final destination: in Keoladeo, India´s paradise for water birds. It is for India which for Botswana is the Okavango and the Everglades mean for America. The local population knows Keoladeo as “Ghana” . In their language the word means “forest” or “jungle”. Keoladeo was originally the private duck hunting ground of the Maharajas of Bharatpur. In the swamps many water birds from Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, China and Siberia are wintering. Supposedly over Continue reading Keoladeo National Park, a paradise also for Western Palearctic birds