Wednesday, April 5, 2017

The Large-tailed Nightjar in plain sight

3 April'17

3 April'17

6 April'17
Large-tailed Nightjar nesting on open ground, Cempedak Hill, Zone G.
I have been tracking the presence of a Large-tailed Nightjar near the tall Cempedak tree at Zone G.  She is of course a perfect camouflage.  You cannot actually recognise it immediately because its body and feathers resemble the colours of dead leaves, vegetative matter, wood, stones or just earth. Furthermore it does not utter any sound or call.  Whether the bird is going to lay eggs, time will tell.  But I'm on the watchout from now on.

The Dollar in sight

Dollar bird perches on a tall dead tree branch at Licuala Hill, Zone I

 Today I'm extremely lucky to have another shot of the Dollar bird, belonging to the Roller family.  From my experience so far, I have only seen this bird coming to town solo.  Its red beak and bluish body is very attractive.  From far, I couldn't specifically recognise this bird because the shot was taken from about 100 meters.  After zooming in on the image then it's confirmed.  This Dollar bird is known to build nest in a hole of the coconut tree.Apparently on this sighting it did not utter any call or sound.
In the background is the Dollar bird, abut 100 meters away. Note the colourful red flushes of a jungle treelet at the foreground.
View from Botanic Island Two, Zone I, looking north.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Catching up with the park

View of the park, looking south from Rusa Hill.

' But-But' (Malay) - Centropus sinensis.
 Before the month ends I thought I would walk around the park this morning to observe nature here core intimately.  The jungle green is everywhere with plenty of colours added.  The shape, texture and size of leaves are so diverse I feel it a joy just to observe and touch them.  Mind you its's just a walk in the par.  Surprises are common.  The sighting of the 'Burung-But-But ( Centropus sinensis) as Malays call this quite large bird makes me mindful of the need to preserve nature and its habitat at the park.  Then I stumbled upon the very interesting Tree Shrew with its very dominant round eyes.  It was seen eating something from the oil palm fruit bunch, not insects but some vegetative matter.  The Tree Shrew is a small mammal that pride itself among the trees but have nest or homes in burrows below. The Tree Shrew below is still a juvenile but seems to enjoy the park very much.

Leaves and colour at Botanic Island Two.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Sunset from Deer Hill

View of sunset from Deer Hill, Zone C

 After clearing some bushes and treelets at the highest point of Zone C, i.e. at Deer Hill, I noticed a spectacular view of the sunset can be observed there.  Looking towards the western horizon, the varying colours of the sunset looked expansive and overwhelming.   Of course, previously I would view the sunset from Licuala Hill.  The view from Deer Hill is equally awesome.  Below are more pictures that I took a couple of days ago.


Note: The above pictures were also shared earlier in my facebook posting.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Black birds are back for black berries.


 The black birds are back again.  They are coming in big flocks.  They make the park sounds busy and noisy.  These birds belong to the Philippines Glossy Starling species. At present they come here to enjoy the delicious berries of the Eugenia oleina trees.  Since these trees are planted at every corner of the park, the excitement is seen everywhere.  These birds flock to the branches that are laden with the black berries and then they might take a rest at nearby perches.  They arrival are most welcomed here.

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Pagoda flower at Butterfly garden

Butterfly Garden Zone, C


The Banded Swallowtail is attracted to the nectar-bearing flowers of the Pagoda Flower (Clerodendrum paniculatum)

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Report from Mrs Tiong

View of Licuala Hill and our nest (in a hole).

Mrs Tiong - female Hill Myna
(Gracula religiosa) 
 Woke up late this morning, around 9 am.  The reason - the weather last night was so cool that makes us both feel lazy.  Anywhere where is my husband? Oh, there you are! I can now see you through the trees and branches at Licuala Hill.  Well, I am not yet ready for today's flight.  Let me refresh a while and then we can fly as far as we can.  My dear, yesterday we managed to get lots of fruits from Tatau area.  Can we find something special for me today? I think, I'm thinking of enjoying some large insects for lunch, ok. Now wait a second.....I'll take off to join you on our daily hunt in five seconds. (Approximately at 9.15 am we took flight towards the direction of Sebauh, some 50 kilometers away. Bye for now)
Mr. Tiong

Mrs Tiong making an early morning call, " Hey there ! Husband, where are you?"

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Let the butterflies roam freely.


 As an eco -defender, the park continues to become home of an endless list of butterflies.  Butterflying waching is indeed a pleasant pastime here.  One thing I noticed is the importance of planting various flowering shrubs,  trees and treelets.  There again these lovely creatures need fly path or flight way..  In the design and planning of the park there must be plenty of landscape spaces allotted to flyways to enable these butterflies flight spaces and visitors to move around safely and fast in order to chase these beauties. Below are more pictures I took of them during the last two - three days.  It's a pleasure to share these flying beauties of nature for the world to see.






Thursday, March 2, 2017

Flash floods and heavy rain


 It was raining heavily on the 2nd of March causing flash floods along the stream.  However, such flooding would last for a short period, usually one to two hours,  as the flood waters would get washed downstream very quickly due to location of the park which is at the hilly start of the stream.  Only on certain locations where the stream meanders that the waters overflow the stream causing flash floods to the surrounding plain.  The energy and force of the current is very strong and fast, a test to nature's fury.
View of flood from 'Abaq' (verandah)



Wednesday, March 1, 2017

The Tree Shrew came to town


Tree Shrew
They belong to the order of Insectivores which is split into six families and the shrew belong to the Soricidae family.

 It has been a while since I last saw a Tree Shrew.  This morning I saw one pleasantly playing among the branches with its body and long tail drenched.  It is a permanent resident of the park and this squirrel-like animal is known to being confined on the island of Borneo. Being insect-eating mammal, it favours tiny insects and invertebrates.  This morning encounter lifted-up my spirit as I surveyed the park in light drizzle.  The weather has been very rainy the last few days and the rains has brought at least two flash floods during this week.  From my experience Tree Shrews are hard to photograph because they move fast among the trees and branches.  They however look very inquisitive especially at the flashes of the camera.

Monday, February 27, 2017

Banded Swallowtail




The Banded Swallowtail butterfly is seen sipping the nectar from the flowers of the Yellow Ixora.
Location : Zone C

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Update on the park


 A little update is necessary as I have not blogged on the park in January as often as before for many reasons.  Chiefly due to travel, v. poor internet connection at the park (despite just a kilometer away from the Bintulu international airport!, which is 22 km away from Btu town) and busy researching on management topics for mentoring and training purposes.  After a short jungle trekking yesterday, I noticed the Licuala Hill has well-preserved  stands of mature Licuala palms, a new cover plant more like a climber have been 'discovered' and a jungle treelet that produces blood red young leaves is doing fine.
A line of Licuala spp. palms at Licuala Hill.

New 'discovery' - a cover plant with climbing habit.
Location : Botanic Island Three

A young stand of Licuala spp

Jungle treelet with blood red flushes (still unidentified)

View of Zone G from Provinsi Rusa