Saturday, March 14, 2015

Under shade of the oil palm trees

Near Provinsi Manila, Zone B

Around Cempedak Hill, Zone G

Zone F

Highlights today at the park - 13 March'15

Closely-packed oil palm fruits, cut in half (cross-section)
Zone F
Male Pink-necked pigeon fluffing its feathers
Zone G
Ripe fruit of the Pong-Pong turns red
Zone C

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Pick of the park - Alpinia purpurata

Red Ginger - Alpinia purpurata
Family : Zingiberaceae - Ginger family
Location : Zone C
The Red Ginger or Alpinia purpurata is producing plantlets.  Plantlets are produced in the inflorescences as seen in the above picture.  The red inflorescences are useful for floral arrangement.
I have used the Red Ginger for many daily cut flowers arrangement.  To see some examples please follow this link ...>>>

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Highlights today at the park - 8 March'15

The Great Eggfly butterly - Hypolimnas bolina bolina, resting on Rhapis excelsa leaf
Location : Provinsi Lady Palm, Zone C

A Frecynetia species or climbing pandan species growing wild at Botanic Island Three
Location : Provinsi Rattan area.

Social wasps or locally called 'Tebuan' (Malay)
Location : Zone G

Belonging to the Araceae (Aroid family), this Alocasia species grows wild  at Botanic Island Three

Fruits of a ficus species plant called Ficus grossulariodes or 'Lengkan' as known to local Ibans.  Fruits are edible.
Location : Zone I

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Between two palms

All images taken on 7 March'15

Busy battering the bees

Blue-throated Bee-eaters battering the bees on to the branches before devouring them
Location : Zone I

Tie a staghorn on the old Lumok tree

Lumok tree (Artocarpus odoratissimus) is seen at center
Location : Zone C

Staghorn fern ( Platycerium coronarium  ) secured on the branches.
The park has a considerable number of Staghorn ferns that grew naturally in the Botanical Islands and well-preserved for posterity.   I have accumulated a number of plantlets over the years and tender them till they grow reasonably big.  Today I decided to place one on an old Lumok tree.  The above pictures show the result of the work.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Eurasian Tree-sparrows frolicking

Eurasian Tree-sparrow (Passer montanus) or in Malay  'Ciak Urasia' perching on the 'Ong Lumok' branch

Eurasian Tree-sparrow
 The phenomena of the tree-sparrows just happened some few months ago.  One day I noticed one bird came to the park.  A couple of weeks later I saw two dropped by.  Towards the end of 2014 there were a about a dozen of them.  By early this year their numbers seemed to grow more than 20 fold.  I have come to accept that fact that they are now a permanent feature of the park, and growing.  Today I saw a dozen or so of them frolicking in shallow waters at Zone F.  They were seen splashing the waters and seemed to be happy having their morning bath.
Eurasian Tree- sparrows frolicking in shallow waters
Zone F

Perching on the leaves of the oil palm
Zone F

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Early morning views from Pazau lookout

View looking south-west at Zone F, from Pazau lookout

View looking south at Zone G, from Pazau lookout

View looking west at Zone E, from Pazau lookout

View looking south at Zone F and G, from Pazau lookout

View looking south-east, from Pazau lookout
All images above taken between 7.30 - 8.00 am

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Early morning visitors to the park

Punai Daun (Malay) - Little Green Pigeon
Male in full colours, female is at the back with greenish body
Location : Cempedak Hill, Zone G

Blue-throated Bee-eater perching on old Rambutan tree
Zone C

Philippine or Asian Glossy Starling - this is a juvenile or immature bird
Location : Cempedak Hill, Zone G.
Note: All images taken on morning of 4 March'15

Black birds are back

Philippine Glossy Starling - Aplonis panayensis
Adults are a glossy black'  Juvenile ones are whitish (seen at bottom right)
Location : Zone C, perching on Balem tree

Juvenile has whitish body, streaked back
and bright  red iris.
 The black birds are back.  For the last two days they have been flocking to the park.  There are many fruiting tall jungle trees at the moment that attract them for their fruits.  You can hear their noisy calls in the air because being social starlings they congregate in large numbers.  Often these black birds are called 'Philippine Glossy Starling' though it seems fashionable to call them Asian Glossy Starling now because interest in birding and photography from Bengal to Vietnam and south to Malaysia, Philippines and Indonesia have recorded that they are residents to these many countries. 
A juvenile with something to swallow...

Higlights today at the park - 3 March'15

A Blue-throated Bee-eater and a Yellow-vented Bulbul

Eastern Crimson Sunbird

Yellow-vented Bulbul

Flora photography at the park

Bunga Raya (Malay) - Hibiscus rosa-sinensis

Terminal inflorescence of the Blood Banana.  Note the dark purple bracts.

Senduduk (Malay) - Melastoma malabathricum

Chinese hat plant - Holmskiolda sanguinea

By the Butterfly garden - Kambatik Blue Knight

Kambatik Blue Knight

 I have good reason to pronounce this butterfly as the 'Kambatik Blue Knight'.  It is not often you see such a marvel of a butterfly at the back of your house.  It comes visiting the park on very few occasions and every time it drops by I'll get very encouraged and excited for the main reason that it  keeps me wondering what is its name.  Checking many online resources seems to be of no help.  Except one, where I saw a picture of a similar butterfly from a contributor in Sabah, but has not given it a name.  Thus, tonight of all the nights,  I'll take the liberty to pronounce this dark blue butterfly as the 'Kambatik Blue Knight'.  This butterfly has broad and large strong wings.  It is well-built and has the metallic splendour of a knight's armour. 

Underside of Kambatik Blue knight

Sunday, March 1, 2015

The forest fringe

Forest fringe of a lowland Dipterocarp forest
Location: Zone C, adjacent to Lada Hill

Red-eyed Bulbul resting
on the fronds of a Nibong palm
 It is vital to keep a forest fringe around the Kambatik park.  This is to enable the continuation of green passageways for the wildlife.  They act as fallback sanctuaries to the park.  In its ecosystem thrives nature's denizens that will want to familiarise themselves to the park.  Some may retreat at night in the forest cover for rest but will soon come out during daylight to scavenge or prey for food at the park.  The forest fringe is a transition landscape and is a site  inhabited or regularly frequented by a rich assortment of wildlife, from ground level to top of canopy, or somewhere in between too.  Most interesting at the park here is the phenomena of the Sambar deer that depend on the forest cover to wander in the night and come out to visit the park areas to enjoy the water from the streams and ponds and to eat some of the cultivated leaves here, chiefly the Tapioca leaves, young leaves of the Cempedak, some Banana species,  grasses and ferns growing on  the oil palm tree trunks.
Plantain Squirrel hunting on the forest fringe

A Monitor Lizard finds temporary comfort on a tall tree trunk on the forest fringe

Plants of botanical interest at the forest fringe
At center is the Staghorn fern