Tag Archives: Ribbon-tailed Astrapia

King of Saxony Bird-of-Paradise sings his song up in Tari Gap

WimpelträgerThe male King of Saxony Bird-of-paradise (Pteridophora alberti) performs his courtship song from a high point of view, from the bushy crown of a giant tree. It is actually the perfect habitat for a King-of-Saxony Bird-of-paradise. The King-of-Saxony Bird-of-paradise impresses with two long feathers on the head, which he can be moved to courtship with big muscles. They are reminiscent of pennants with their eye-catching structure and are clearly visible from a distance. Mowing forward his two extra-long head feathers he smashes his monotonous song, like a Common Grasshopper-warbler (Locustella naevia) high in the rainforest. At first we can only see the bird between leaves on the edge of a row of trees. Then the male King-of-Saxony even lets himself down to fly on a bare tree and from there extensively to shake with his two long feathers on the head. Back and forth, back and forth, he moves his two long feathers.

From Ambua Lodge we started in the afternoon by bus to higher elevations, above the clouds. This is the region known as Tari Gap in literature. From the road we wanted to observe the King of Saxony Bird-of-paradise. We were not out of the gate yet, Continue reading King of Saxony Bird-of-Paradise sings his song up in Tari Gap

Magnificent Bird-of-paradise in the rainforest

FurchenparadiesvogelHeavy rains during the last night made the path through the steep slopes of the rainforest almost impassable. Again and again I sink up to my knees in the mud while I try to follow my guide, who is carrying my luggage and using his machete to help us through the thicket of lianas and branches. Suddenly we hear a short whistle: That must be the courtship call of a Magnificent Bird-of-Paradise (Cicinnurus magnificus). Although we can spot no bird, a courtship area can be clearly seen in front of us on the forest floor. My guide builds a provisional hiding place out of leaves and a few hours later we visit the place again. But since it starts to rain again, no bird can be seen. Over the next five days I keep trying my luck in the hide, but unfortunately it rains almost all the time. Only in the rain breaks does a male stop by and inspect the courtship area. After all, I am rarely lucky enough to see a Red-bellied Pitta (Pitta erythrogaster) which is now split taxonomically and called a Papuan Pitta (Erythropitta macklotii). This species is extremely shy and difficult to observe. The annual rainfall in this area of ​​New Guinea is 6,000 millimeters, so rain (mostly at night) is quite the order of the day. I set my trip in the dry season, but unfortunately, according to the locals, I apparently had hit a particularly wet dry season. After that unsuccessful experience, I changed location to the Central Highlands around Mt. Hagen in the middle of the island. Here I was accomodated in the rustic lodge, the Kumul Lodge, and my success level developed much better. Here I shot the image of the blog, the female Crested Bird-of-paradise.

When the first scientists from Europe saw New Guinea’s birds-of-paradise at the beginning of the 19th century, they were completely perplexed: “I was too amazed to shoot the bird,” wrote the French Continue reading Magnificent Bird-of-paradise in the rainforest