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Due to heavy reconstruction of this webpage, this blog is temporary suspended to renew in this summer, it will be updated again after late-autumn, thank you for your visits in these 9 years.

31 October 2015

Birds of Tunisia

100m : White-headed Duck (白頭硬尾鴨) ; 600m : Ferruginous Duck (白眼潛鴨)
600m : Moussier's Redstart (摩希爾氏紅尾鴝) ; 600m : Marbled Duck (雲石斑鴨)
Tunisia (2004)
29th May, 2015. Bardoc

Tunisia is a country much undervisited by birders in the spring. It has plenty to offer both for bird-lovers and history-lovers, plus comfortable tourist resorts. white-headed duck is a small stiff-tailed duck. Adult males have a grey and reddish body, a blue bill and a largely white head with a black cap and neck. Adult females have a grey-brown body with a white face and a darker bill, cap and a cheek stripe. Length is 43–48 cm and weight is 580–750 g. Ferruginous Duck breeding habitat is marshes and lakes with a metre or more water depth. These ducks breed in southern and eastern Europe and southern and western Asia. They are somewhat migratory, and winter farther south and into north Africa. The adult male is a rich chestnut colour with a darker back and a yellow eye. The pure white undertail helps to distinguish this species from the somewhat similar tufted duck. The female is similar but duller, and with a dark eye.

Moussier's Redstart is a small passerine bird in the genus Phoenicurus, formerly classed as a member of the thrush family, but is now classified as an Old World flycatcher. It is an endemic resident breeder in the Atlas Mountains of northwest Africa. Its habitat is open woodland in rocky areas from sea level up to 3000 m altitude in the mountains. Marbled Duck is a medium-sized duck. It used to be included among the dabbling ducks, but is now classed as a diving duck. The scientific name, Marmaronetta angustirostris, comes from the Greek marmaros, marbled and netta, a duck, and Latin angustus, narrow or small and rostris billed.

24 October 2015

Northern Shoveler

Northern Shoveler (琵嘴鴨)
Belgium (2015)
30th May, 2015. Monk

Northern Shoveler is unmistakable in the northern hemisphere due to its large spatulate bill. The breeding drake has an iridescent dark green head, white breast and chestnut belly and flanks. In flight, pale blue forewing feathers are revealed, separated from the green speculum by a white border. In early fall the male will have a white crescent on each side of the face. In non-breeding (eclipse) plumage, the drake resembles the female.

The female is a drab mottled brown like other dabblers, with plumage much like a female mallard, but easily distinguished by the long broad bill, which is gray tinged with orange on cutting edge and lower mandible. The female's forewing is gray.

They are 48 cm long and have a wingspan of 76 cm (30 in) with a weight of 600 g.

17 October 2015

Birds of Slovenia II

From left to right :
€0,01 : Great Crested Grebe (鳳頭鷿鷈); €0,02 : Stock Dove (歐鴿)
€0,05 : Black Stork (黑鸛) ; €0,20 : Kentish Plover (東方環頸鴴)
€0,50 : White-winged Snowfinch (白斑翅雪雀)
Slovenia (2015)

7th July, 2015. Službeno, Maribor

Slovenia continuous its bird definitive series on 2015, five stamps are Great Crested Grebe, Stock Dove, Black Stork, Kentish Plover and White-winged Snowfinch. Great Crested Grebe is the largest member of the grebe family found in the Old World, with some larger species residing in the Americas. They measure 46–51 cm long with a 59–73 cm wingspan and weigh 0.9 to 1.5 kg. It is an excellent swimmer and diver, and pursues its fish prey underwater. The adults are unmistakable in summer with head and neck decorations. In winter, this is whiter than most grebes, with white above the eye, and a pink bill. Stock Dove is the largest within the pigeon family, and has the widest distribution. Its members are typically pale grey or brown, often with white head or neck markings or iridescent green or purple patches on the neck and breast. The neck feathers may be stiffened and aligned to form grooves, but these are absent in this species. The stock dove is less grey in plumage than other pigeons in Europe.

With a body length of 90–100 cm, the black stork is slightly smaller than its cousin the white stork. The black stork is a shy bird that is highly sensitive to human presence and lives inwoodland in the vicinity of small streams or ditches. It builds its large nest in old trees, usually oak, in lowland wooded areas, forests. Occasionally it will build a nest on a suitable rock. It has one brood consisting of three to five chicks. Kentish Plover is 15 to 17 cm long and can be distinguished from the little ringed plover, which also nests in Slovenia, by the dark patches on the side of the breast and, in the male bird, by a sandy-brown cap. Generally speaking it has less black on its body than related species. It nests on the coast, in areas safe from floods, on salty soil with scant vegetation. The nest is simply a hollow in the
ground.

With a body length of 17–19 cm, the snowfinch is the largest passerine species in Slovenia. It inhabits inhospitable areas of rocky grassland and screes above the treeline; it is unconcerned by human presence. It likes to build its nest in crevices close to areas where the snow remains on the ground for a long time and surrounded by steep rock faces. It lays clutches of four to five eggs and has one to two broods a year.

Great Crested Grebe (鳳頭鷿鷈)
Slovenia (2015)

7th July, 2015. Službeno, Maribor

10 October 2015

Antarctic Tern

Antarctic Tern (南極燕鷗)
French Australia and Antarctica Territories (2015)
1st January, 2015. Dumont D’Urville

Antarctic Tern is a typical tern. It ranges throughout the southern oceans. It is very similar in appearance to the closely related Arctic tern, but is stockier, and the wing tips are grey instead of blackish in flight. It is, of course, in breeding plumage in the southern summer, when the Arctic tern has moulted to its non-breeding plumage.

Breeding takes place from mid-November to early December. Chicks hatch from December to February. Skuas and jaegers are the primary predators of this bird's eggs and young.

The total global population of this bird is around 140,000 individuals.

3 October 2015

110th anniversary of Naardermeer Nature Reserve

Great Crested Grebe (鳳頭鸊鷉)
The Netherlands (2015)
28th April, 2015. Naarden-Energiestraat

Naardermeer Nature Reserve was the first-ever natural area to be managed by the Dutch Nature Preservation Society, having been acquired as early as 1906. “More than a century on, visitors continue to enjoy the lake, swamp forests and surrounding fields every day and see what a sanctuary this unique reserve represents for plants and animals. I would imagine that the stamps will inspire many nature lovers to visit Naardermeer Nature Reserve and enjoy the beautiful scenery and all that it has to offer”, said Marc van den Tweel, Managing Director of Natuurmonumenten.

Naardermeer Nature Reserve is celebrating its 110th anniversary this year, and it remains a great source of pride to many people in the Netherlands

From left to right :
Eurasian Reed Warbler (蘆葦鶯) ; Great Cormorant (普通鸕鶿)
The Netherlands (2015)
28th April, 2015. Naarden-Energiestraat
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