The Owl’s Library – By Emma Foster

Western Barn Owl (Tyto alba) by Daves BirdingPix

Western Barn Owl (Tyto alba) by Daves BirdingPix

The Owl’s Library

By Emma Foster

Once there was an owl who lived in the attic of a library. His name was Leonard and his cousin’s name was Art. One day Leonard received a letter from Art telling him that Art had just published his own book.

Leonard watched people come and go to and from the library every day checking out different kinds of books. Leonard decided that it would be a great idea to have his own library. Then he could watch people check out books every day, and Art’s book could be checked out every day as well.

Leonard had to find some land for sale first. He flew to the library Art lived in, and asked for his help. Art told him how the librarian who owned the library he lived in was retiring and had already put the place up for sale. If Leonard couldn’t buy this library, Art wouldn’t have any place to live.

So Leonard went to the librarian. The librarian, Frank, said that he was going to retire and someone else would have to buy the property because he was in so much debt.
Leonard and Art got together and decided to hold a fundraiser to save the library. They began by posting flyers all over town. The fundraiser would be held that Saturday at the library. Leonard and Art decided that they would have a race to raise money for it. Many people who lived nearby, saw the sign, and decided they would run in the race.

On that Saturday, all the people, including many birds, made their way to the starting line to start running the race. Everyone would run or fly around the entire library and down several streets downtown nearby.

Mixed Flock of birds flying in a V Formation- Put together- ©Creative Commons

Mixed Flock of birds flying in a V Formation- Put together- ©Creative Commons

Art blew the whistle and Leonard watched excitedly s everyone started running as fast as they could. The birds flew up above the buildings to watch everyone run around the library and up the next street. They flew above them to cheer the runners on.

Leonard was excited to see how much money they had raised at the end of the day, so the race seemed to take a really long time. When the first runners ran around the corner to the finish line, Leonard flew after them for the rest if the day.

Barn Owl at Flamingo Gardens by Lee

Barn Owl at Flamingo Gardens by Lee

Everyone cheered when Leonard flew past the finish line with the first runner. When all of the donations were counted up, the total was ten thousand dollars, which was more than enough to keep the library open.

Frank decided that he would still retire, but since Leonard was so excited about keeping the library open, he decided to let Leonard run the library for him when he retired.
Leonard was really happy to run the library, and Art was happy that he would be living in the same library. Every day, Leonard would help people check out books while Art continued to write more books. Both Leonard and Art couldn’t have been happier, especially since they were able to save the library.

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And unto man he said, Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom; and to depart from evil is understanding. (Job 28:28 KJV)

O LORD, how manifold are thy works! in wisdom hast thou made them all: the earth is full of thy riches. (Psalms 104:24 KJV)

Well, Emma has given us another enjoyable story to enjoy. I assume that since Leonard and Art will both be living in the library, they will become even “Wiser Owls.”

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Other Articles by Emma Foster

Wordless Birds

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Jesus Helps Me – Book Review

Jesus Helps Me – Cover

I was contacted by Shelton Interactive on behalf of Callie Grant, the founder of Graham Blanchard, asked if I would review a children’s book by the title: Jesus Helps Me. She knew this blog is Christian based and about birds.

Jesus Helps Me is Christian and about birds. This book is another one in their Knowing My God series.

To begin with, the book is made to be handled by young children. The pages are very colorful, the photos of the bird are great. The verses are simple enough that a child can understand them, and are teaching good Biblical Truths.

As you turn the well made pages (thick, that can be handled by a youngster without tearing); they are colorful, have a bird photo and a simple description or information about the bird, and have a verse or partial verse that is spread over several pages. The page color is different each time you turn a page. That is for teaching colors to the young children.

The book is for babies, toddlers and young children. They suggested reading to babies because they thrive “just hearing your voice as you read the Bible passage in this book.” Toddlers can be shown and told about the birds and colors as a learning tool, besides the verses. As the children advance in age, they can be taught more about those verse to increase their knowledge.

Mute Swan

Mute Swan

As I was reviewing this book, besides the book teaching the little ones about verses, birds, colors, etc., I had another thought.  What a great way to start training “new birdwatchers.” And, from a Christian perspective, no less.  :)

Jesus mentioned the “little children” in many verses. In Matthew 18:2-5, Jesus taught this lesson:

“And Jesus called a little child unto him, and set him in the midst of them, And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoso shall receive one such little child in my name receiveth me. (Matthew 18:2-5 KJV)”

For more information, you can contact, www.grahamblanchard.com

ABC’s Of The Gospel
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Birds of the Bible – Lord Who Is There

White-crowned Sparrow (Zonotrichia leucophrys) ©USFWS

White-crowned Sparrow (Zonotrichia leucophrys) ©USFWS

I am currently taking a Ladies Bible study, “Disciples Prayer Life.” One of our lessons suggested using some of the different names of God while praying. There is quite a list of God’s names in our lesson. Some of them are:

  • God (Elohim) – Sovereign, Power, Creator
  • Lord (Adonai) – Master, Ruler, Owner
  • Jehovah (the self-existing Lord) – eternal, changeless, faithful
  • The Lord our Provider (Jehovah-Jireh)
  • The Lord our Peace (Jehovah-Shalom)
  • The Lord who is there (Jehovah-Shammah)

It is this last one, Jehovah-Shammah, that has really caught my interest. As you can see, it means “The Lord who is there.”

When we read Genesis 1:1, it begins with “In the beginning, God…” The word for God here is Elohim – אֱלֹהִים ,  ‘ĕlôhı̂ym,  el-o-heem’ There is much to be said about this, but, for now, that is not my purpose. The Lord God is the Creator, Sovereign and all-powerful. God has no beginning, or ending, He is the Alpha and the Omega.

Because God has always been, the word, Jehovah-Shammah, “The Lord who is there” is also true. God’s Word chose not to use that word here.

Grasshopper Sparrow (Ammodramus savannarum) by Ray

Grasshopper Sparrow (Ammodramus savannarum) by Ray

All of this to explain a passage about the sparrows, which I have used many times before, that could have used the word ” Jehovah-Shammah.”

“Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows.” (Matthew 10:29-31 KJV) (emphasis mine)

When a sparrow or any bird falls and/or dies, their Father, knows all about it because HE IS THERE.

If a fallen sparrow is noticed by the Father, who is there, should we not receive comfort from knowing that our Lord God knows and sees us also. As that passage goes on, there is comfort given to us because we are of more value than the birds. We, mankind, were made in the image of God, animals and birds were not. Because of sin, the Lord Jesus Christ, God’s Son, provided salvation for us. It cost the Lord His blood to save us from our sins. We have a choice whether to receive that Sacrifice or not.

Anyone for a Sparrow Snack?

Every since I saw this photo, Matthew 10:29, has meant more to me than just a bird dying of old age. That whole cage is packed with sparrows to be eaten. That sickens me, but maybe I eat things that sicken others in another culture. I just found another photo of a roasted sparrow. I refuse to post it.

I love Sparrows of all kinds and the other birds. Most of all, I am thankful for a Creator God who cares for those birds and for us. When we KNOW that the Lord IS THERE, we can have comfort knowing we can pray and bring our requests to the Lord, knowing that He cares and already knows all about our needs.

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Birds of the Bible

Birds of the Bible – Sparrows

Birds of the Bible – Worry and Sparrows

Sharing The Gospel

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More Photos To Enjoy!

My friend, Jeanie, who wrote the poem, Hummingbird, sent me these photos. Enjoy!

The photography is amazing, but the captions are priceless !!!!!

I hate it when he plays "Mount Everest ..."

I hate it when he plays “Mount Everest …”

Who the is "Sugar Lips"?

Who is “Sugar Lips”?

Those brownies were Far Out!!

Those brownies were Far Out!!

NO! We Don't want any Magazine Subscriptions!

NO! We Don’t want any Magazine Subscriptions!

There's a ringer competing in the Hogtown Olympics.

There’s a ringer competing in the Hogtown Olympics.

I'm not Over-Weight, I'm Under-Height!!

I’m not Over-Weight, I’m Under-Height!!

You do have an odd perspective on things.

You do have an odd perspective on things.

Lunchtime at the Corncob Cafe

Lunchtime at the Corncob Cafe

Okay, I caught him, now what do I do with him?

Okay, I caught him, now what do I do with him?

I hate this game.

I hate this game.

Flight 'Hum-One' coming in for a landing.

Flight ‘Hum-One’ coming in for a landing.

Just act natural and blend in.

Just act natural and blend in.

Where's my Coffee?

Where’s my Coffee?

Whooo loves ya, Baby?

Whooo loves ya, Baby?


But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection. And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.
(Colossians 3:14-17 NKJV)


Sunday Inspiration – Seven Small Families

As we continue through our Passerines, we come to seven families that have very few members in them. Just because their numbers are few, their Creator has not failed to give each a niche to fill and the ability and design to do so. They are all small birds, like the song, “His Eye Is On The Sparrow,” these bird are no less ignored by the Lord.

Dapple-throat (Arcanator orostruthus) ©WikiC

Dapple-throat (Arcanator orostruthus) ©WikiC

I am weary with my crying; My throat is dry; My eyes fail while I wait for my God. (Psalms 69:3 NKJV)

The Dapple-throat and allies – Arcanatoridae family only has three species; Spot-throatt, Dapple-throat and the Grey-chested Babbler. Internet says they are from Africa and that its natural habitat is subtropical or tropical moist montane forests. That is about the only information given.

Cape Sugarbird (Promerops cafer) ©WikiC

Cape Sugarbird (Promerops cafer) ©WikiC

More to be desired are they than gold, Yea, than much fine gold; Sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb. (Psalms 19:10 NKJV)

The Sugarbirds make up a small family, Promeropidae, of passerine birds which are restricted to southern Africa. The two species of sugarbird make up one of only two bird families restricted entirely to southern Africa, the other being the rock-jumpers Chaetopidae. In general appearance as well as habits they resemble large long-tailed sunbirds, but are possibly more closely related to the Australian honeyeaters. They have brownish plumage, the long downcurved bill typical of passerine nectar feeders, and long tail feathers.

Asian Fairy-bluebird (Irena puella) at Cincinnati Zoo by Lee

Asian Fairy-bluebird (Irena puella) at Cincinnati Zoo by Lee

“You shall make the robe of the ephod all of blue.” (Exodus 28:31 NKJV)

The two Fairy-bluebirds are small passerine bird species found in forests and plantations in tropical southern Asia and the Philippines. They are the sole members of the genus Irena and family Irenidae, and are related to the ioras and leafbirds.

These are bulbul-like birds of open forest or thorn scrub, but whereas that group tends to be drab in colouration, fairy-bluebirds are sexually dimorphic, with the males being dark blue in plumage, and the females duller green.

Goldcrest (Regulus regulus) by Ian

Goldcrest (Regulus regulus) by Ian

And thou shalt overlay it with pure gold, and make thereto a crown of gold round about. (Exodus 25:24 KJV)

Regulidae – Goldcrests, kinglets family has only six members. The kinglets or crests are a small group of birds sometimes included in the Old World warblers, but are frequently given family status because they also resemble the titmice. The scientific name Regulidae is derived from the Latin word regulus for “petty king” or prince, and comes from the coloured crowns of adult birds. This family has representatives in North America and Eurasia.

Spotted Elachura (Elachura formosa) ©Ramki Sreenivasan

Spotted Elachura (Elachura formosa) ©Ramki Sreenivasan

The Spotted Elachura (Elachura formosa (Elachuridae) is the only bird in its family they discovered recently through DNA studies. It is found in Bangladesh, Bhutan, China, India, Laos, Myanmar, Nepal, and Vietnam. Its natural habitat is subtropical or tropical moist montane forests. This species is found in undergrowth and dense thickets of this type of forest, with a preference for thick fern ground cover, mossy rocks and decaying trunks of fallen trees and brushwood (often near stream or creek) long grass and scrub.

Violet-baked Hyliota (Hyliota violacea) ©WikiC

Violet-baked Hyliota (Hyliota violacea) ©WikiC

Hyliotidae – Hyliota found in Angola, Cameroon, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. Its natural habitats are subtropical or tropical moist lowland forests, subtropical or tropical moist montane forests, and plantations. It is threatened by habitat loss.

Blue-Gray Gnatcatcher at Circle B Reserve by Lee

Blue-Gray Gnatcatcher at Circle B Reserve by Lee

Lift up your eyes to the heavens, and look upon the earth beneath; for the heavens shall be dissolved and vanish away like smoke, and the earth shall wax old like a garment, and they that dwell therein shall die in like manner [like gnats]. But My salvation shall be forever, and My rightness and justice [and faithfully fulfilled promise] shall not be abolished. [Matt. 24:35; Heb. 1:11; II Pet. 3:10.] (Isaiah 51:6 AMP)

(Wrens skipped until next week ) Our last group of very small birds are from the Polioptilidae – Gnatcatchers. The 18 species of small passerine birds in the gnatcatcher family occur in North and South America (except far south and high Andean regions). Most species of this mainly tropical and subtropical group are resident, but the Blue-gray Gnatcatcher of the USA and southern Canada migrates south in winter. They are close relatives of the wrens. (Wikipedia)

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Not Sure What Happened!

Please re-check the last article I posted this evening. I went to fix one thing and it wiped out most of the article. It is now the way is was supposed to be.

Great Grey Owl

I am still looking for remarks or a story that could be posted as to what you think that expression is saying.

Great Grey Owl (Strix nebulosa) ©Peter K Burian at www.peterkburian.com

Great Grey Owl (Strix nebulosa) ©Peter K Burian at http://www.peterkburian.com

Behold, happy is the man whom God correcteth: therefore despise not thou the chastening of the Almighty: (Job 5:17 KJV)

Sunday Inspiration – Worth The Lamb

Chestnut-backed Scimitar Babbler (Pomatorhinus montanus) ©WikiC

Chestnut-backed Scimitar Babbler (Pomatorhinus montanus) ©WikiC

Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus; Who was faithful to him that appointed him, as also Moses was faithful in all his house. For this man was counted worthy of more glory than Moses, inasmuch as he who hath builded the house hath more honour than the house. For every house is builded by some man; but he that built all things is God. (Hebrews 3:1-4 KJV)

Looks like this week you’ll be introduced to three families of avian wonders. I am skipping over the Cisticolidae – Cisticolas and allies until next week, because it is quite large. This week the Black-capped Donacobius (Donacobiidae), only bird in family; the Malagasy Warblers (Bernienidae) with 11 species; and the Babblers, Scimitar Barbler’s of the Timaliidae Family of 55 should give us enough birds for a slideshow.

Black-capped Donacobius (Donacobius atricapilla) ©©

Black-capped Donacobius (Donacobius atricapilla) ©©

The Black-capped Donacobius (Donacobius atricapilla) is a conspicuous, vocal South American bird. It is found in tropical swamps and wetlands in Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guyana, Paraguay, Peru, Suriname, and Venezuela; also Panama of Central America. They are common in a wide range of Amazonian wetlands, including oxbow lakes, riparian zones, and other areas with tall dense aquatic or semi-aquatic vegetation.

Mating for life, pairs of Black-capped Donacobiuses can be seen frequently and throughout the day atop thickets of dense lakeside or streamside vegetation. They often will engage in antiphonic dueting. Adult offspring will remain with their parents and help raise siblings from subsequent nesting periods in a system of cooperative breeding. (Wikipedia)

Long-billed Bernieria (Bernieria madagascariensis) WikiC

Long-billed Bernieria (Bernieria madagascariensis) WikiC

The Malagasy warblers are a newly validated clade of songbirds. They were formally named Bernieridae in 2010. The family consists of 11 species of small forest birds and is endemic to Madagascar. (Wikipedia)

Slender-billed Scimitar Babbler (Pomatorhinus superciliaris) ©WikiC

Slender-billed Scimitar Babbler (Pomatorhinus superciliaris) ©WikiC

Our last family has Scimitar Babblers and some of the various Babblers.

The genus Pomatorhinus of scimitar babblers are jungle birds with long downcurved bills. These are birds of tropical Asia, with the greatest number of species occurring in hills of the Himalayas. They are medium-sized, floppy-tailed landbirds with soft plumage. They are typically long-tailed, dark brown above, and white or orange-brown below. Many have striking head patterns, with a broad black band through the eye, bordered with white above and below.

Spelaeorni genus the typical wren-babblers, is a bird genus in the family Timaliidae. Among this group, the typical wren-babblers are quite closely related to the type species, the chestnut-capped babbler (Timalia pileata). Typical babblers live in communities of around a dozen birds, jointly defending a territory. Many even breed communally, with a dominant pair building a nest, and the remainder helping to defend and rear their young. Young males remain with the group, while females move away to find a new group, and thus avoid inbreeding. They make nests from twigs, and hide them in dense vegetation. (Info from Wikipedia)

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Saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing. (Revelation 5:12 KJV)

“Worthy The Lamb” ~ Choir at Faith Baptist Church

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More Sunday Inspirations

Donacobiidae – Black-capped Donacobius

Bernieridae – Malagasy Warblers

Timaliidae – Babblers, Scimitar Babblers

Gospel Presentation

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Ian’s Bird of the Week – Lesser Sooty Owl

Ian’s Bird of the Week – Lesser Sooty Owl ~ by Ian Montgomery

Newsletter – 9/7/15

You may remember that in March of this year Greater Sooty Owl featured as Bird of the Week when I visited East Gippsland east of Melbourne with my Victorian birding pals Barb, Jen and Joy. Last Thursday I met up with the trio again, this time at Kingfisher Park west of Cairns, Far North Queensland. The main target was, naturally, Lesser Sooty Owl , another member of the Barn Owl family and a species as elusive as its larger cousin. I’d seen one at Kingfisher Park in 2002 but hadn’t photographed it and none of the trio had seen it before.

Lesser Sooty Owl (Tyto multipunctata) by Ian

It’s a Wet Tropics endemic ranging from Paluma – and perhaps Bluewater Forest near me – in the south to Cedar Bay in the north, with an estimated population of 2000 pairs. I’ve searched for it many time since without success so I’d agree with the field guides that say: “seldom seen” (Morcombe) and “until field studies in recent decades … among our least-known birds” (Pizzey and Knight). On Wednesday night I’d searched for it along some dreadful tracks in Tumoulin Forest Reserve near Ravenshoe and on Thursday night we spotlighted the 10km length of the Mount Lewis road near Kingfisher Park with the usual result.

Lesser Sooty Owl (Tyto multipunctata) by Ian

It does occur at Kingfisher Park and Andrew Isles told us to listen for it in the evening “after the barn owls” which live in adjacent Geraghty Park. Barn and Sooty Owls make chirruping calls and both species of Sooty Owl have a characteristic descending whistle like a falling bomb. Sure enough at 6:55pm an owl chirruped maybe 50 metres from the trio’s apartment and we raced around the corner to find this bird had come to visit us and was perched in full view in a tree at a photography-friendly height. Later, I agreed with Joy that it was an OMG moment on a par with encountering the Kagu family on a forest track in New Caledonia.

Lesser Sooty Owl (Tyto multipunctata) by Ian

In the past, the Greater and Lesser have been treated as a single species, but the species split is now generally accepted. They are genetically close, but there is a big difference in sizes – Lesser 31-38cm/12-15in , Greater 37-51cm/14.5-20 (females of both are larger than the males) – and differences in appearance, call and behaviour. Their ranges are disjoint with the Greater found from near Melbourne (Strzelecki and Dandenong Ranges) along the east coast to Eungella National Park near Mackay in Central Queensland. There is also a Sooty Owl in New Guinea. It’s still lumped with the Greater, which is biogeographically unlikely, but has been placed with the Lesser and may even be a different species.

Lesser Sooty Owl (Tyto multipunctata) by Ian

The behaviour of the Lesser differs in that it uses lower perches for hunting, good for photographers, and is known to cling to the side of tree trunks like the Eastern Yellow and Pale-yellow Robins. The last photo shows its impressive talons: these would be able to cling on to anything.

Lesser Sooty Owl (Tyto multipunctata) by Ian

If you’re into benchmarks, last week’s bird, the Ouvea Parakeet, was the 1500th global species on the Birday website (15% of all bird species) but the Australian total was stuck at 699 waiting for something special of course. The Lesser Sooty Owl will be a fitting 700th – I haven’t put it up yet, you get to see if first – that’s 700 out of the 898 ever recorded or 78%.

I’m back home now planning my next project now that the Diary of a Bird Photographer Volume 1 has been published. So far, 27 copies have been purchased and favourable comments are coming in from all over the place including California, UK, Italy and Dubai. The Fat Birder has published a review in which he said:

“I hope anyone who enjoys fine photography and fantastic birds will go to iTunes and download the book… I for one can’t wait for volume 2”

Happily, the remaining 940 members of the bird of the week list don’t have to wait that long for Volume 1!
I’ve put a Quick Guide to eBooks on the Publications page that should be useful if you want to find out more about electronic books or need to chose which book seller is the best for your needs. I have good feedback too about formatting, so I’ve included a section on the ePub format this is a flexible format that flows to match the screen and (selected) font and font size. This may mean, for example, that an image may jump to the next page if there isn’t enough space and get separated from the header before it.

http://www.birdway.com.au/birdphotographersdiary01.htm

Ian's Book

Ian’s Book

http://www.birdway.com.au/nqbirds.htm

Where To Find Birds - Ian

It turned out that the illness from which my desktop computer was suffering – dying graphics card – was terminal, or perhaps ‘terminated’ is a better word, as being a 2008 model, Apple classifies it as ‘vintage’ and doesn’t supply parts any longer. So I’ve had to order a replacement, and I will greatly appreciate any book sales!

End of commercial and plea…

Greetings
Ian

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Ian Montgomery, Birdway Pty Ltd,
454 Forestry Road, Bluewater, Qld 4818
Tel 0411 602 737 ian@birdway.com.au
Check the latest website updates:
http://www.birdway.com.au/#updates


Lee’s Addition:

The beast of the field shall honour me, the dragons and the owls: because I give waters in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert, to give drink to my people, my chosen. (Isaiah 43:20 KJV)

I am impressed with this neat Lesser Sooty Owl from our Creator and also with Ian’s number of Global and Australian birds he has on his birding list.

Now that he is producing these books, I hope he will continue to give permission to reproduce his Bird of the Week Newsletters.

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Ian’s Bird of the Week 

Ian’s Birdway

Barn Owls – Tytonidae

Wordless Birds

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Ian’s Bird of the Week – Ouvéa Parakeet

Ian’s Bird of the Week – Ouvéa Parakeet ~ by Ian Montgomery

Newsletter ~ 9/2/15

I was half-way through preparing this bird of the week this afternoon when my 2008 iMac died, or at least got terribly ill, so I’ve delivered it to the Mac Doctors and am now working on my laptop. Thank goodness for automatic backups, as I lost only the email itself and the map below that I was in the middle of preparing. I want to get the email out today so that i can delivery 4 birds of the week this month – my level of enthusiasm for doing the bird of the week has risen considerably since I started preparing the first volume of the Diary of a Bird Photographer.

Anyway, back to the Loyalty Islands off the west coast of the main island of New Caledonia. After spending the morning in Lifou, we flew to the neighbouring island, Ouvéa, home to the endemic Ouvéa Parakeet. Ouvéa is a long thin island, thinnest in the middle in a way that reminded me of both Bribie Island in Tasmania and Lord Howe Island. Like Lord Howe, it has a coral lagoon on one side and an ocean beach on the other but the resemblance largely ends there, as Ouvéa is a coral atoll and very flat, while Lord Howe is volcanic in origin and spectacularly mountainous.

Map of where Ouvéa Parakeet Found, by Ian

Map of where Ouvéa Parakeet Found, by Ian

The parakeet occurs mainly on the northern end of the island so its geographical range is tiny – see the scale on the map above, courtesy of Google Earth. The airport is on the southern end and we decided not to emulate some energetic birders who wrote a trip report and travelled from the airport to the north end of the island by bicycle. Instead, we had booked a rental car at the airport and booked accommodation in a tribal village called Gossanah in parakeet territory near where our bird guide Benoit lived. I’ll say a bit more about both our guide and accommodation later, but first the parakeet.

Ouvéa Parakeet (Eunymphicus uvaeensis) by Ian

It was dark by the time we reached Gossanah, so parakeet hunting had to wait until the morning. I was woken up by early-riser Joy with the exciting news that there were parakeets in the grounds of where we were staying. I stumbled out bleary-eyed (remember we had got up at 4:30am the morning before to get our flight to Lihou) camera in hand and sure enough there they were, or there it was, first photo. Later we joined Benoit and he took us around his garden and though an area of adjacent rainforest. There we found some more parakeets, including the one in the second photo.

Ouvéa Parakeet (Eunymphicus uvaeensis) by Ian

They aren’t as brightly coloured as the Horned Parakeet of the main island, Grand Terre, and the crest is different, containing more than two feathers and lacking red tips. The Ouvéa Parakeet used to be treated as a race of the Horned, but has now been given full species status.

Ouvéa Parakeet (Eunymphicus uvaeensis) Nesting Hollow by Ian

Benoit showed us an active nesting hollow, third photo. We saw a parakeet flying into it and waited for it to reappear, but it had either settled down for the morning or had more patience than we had. The parakeets are very partial to the seeds of Papaya. They don’t wait for the fruit to ripen before they chew their way into the centre to get at the seeds.

Papaya

Papaya

The parakeets are protected and the population has increased in recent years. We got the impression that the islanders are rather ambivalent about the birds. They are proud to have such an unusual endemic bird – its iconic status is actively promoted by the authorities – but are concerned about its effect on their largely subsistent way of life.

Ouvéa Parakeet (Eunymphicus uvaeensis) by Ian

Ouvéa Parakeet (Eunymphicus uvaeensis) by Ian

We stayed at a tribal home stay called Beauvoisin – ‘good neighbour’ run by Marc and his wife (see http://www.iles-loyaute.com/en/Prestataire/Fiche/1374/beauvoisin). They provided dinner in the evening, accommodation in a circular hut and breakfast – Joy took the photo above of me emerging from the hut in the morning. We enjoyed it very much and Marc and his family were delightful and looked after us very well. They spoke some English and have a Facebook page. Benoit Tangopi our guide was great too and we saw a variety of other interesting birds on the walk through the rainforest. We contacted him by phone +687 800549, but you might need to brush up your French as he doesn’t speak much English.

Greetings
Ian

**************************************************
Ian Montgomery, Birdway Pty Ltd,
454 Forestry Road, Bluewater, Qld 4818
Tel 0411 602 737 ian@birdway.com.au
Check the latest website updates:
http://www.birdway.com.au/#updates


Lee’s Addition:


If a bird’s nest should chance to be before you in the way, in any tree or on the ground, with young ones or eggs, and the mother bird is sitting on the young or on the eggs, you shall not take the mother bird with the young. You shall surely let the mother bird go, and take only the young, that it may be well with you and that you may prolong your days. (Deuteronomy 22:6-7 AMP)

Thanks, Ian, for taking us along on another birdwatching adventure. I don’t speak French, so we are glad you did the talking and photographing. Another neat creation you have found for us to enjoy.

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Ian’s Bird of the Week Newsletters

Ian’s Ouvéa Parakeet Photos

Psittaculidae – Old World Parrots

Wordless Birds

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Diary of a Bird Photographer!

y electronic book Diary of a Bird Photographer has been released worldwide today, 31 August, on Apple iTunes BooksGoogle Books and Kobo Books! Find out more about it including availability, pricing, compatible devices and screenshots on the BIrdway website: http://www.birdway.com.au/birdphotographersdiary01.htm.

Ian's Book

Ian’s Book

With the increasing abundance of excellent bird photos on the internet, I am finding it more difficult to sell photos so moving into publishing is important for the future of my Birdway website and the Bird of the Week newsletter. Diary of a Bird Photographer contains the first 341 Bird of the Week postings spanning the period 2002-2009, contains more than 500 photos and 80,000 words – the length of an average novel. Depending on sales, l plan to publish 2010-2014 as another book.

With a recommended retail price of 8.00AUD, 7USD, 6EUR or the equivalent in your local currency it represents great value. By buying it for yourself and/or your friends or family and recommending it to others, you’ll earn my gratitude and show your appreciation for the bird of the week! Maybe you could forward this email to anyone who you think might be interested: that would be wonderful.

Greetings
Ian

PS Next bird of the week, a special parrot and the random bird of the week, should be out later today.

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Ian Montgomery, Birdway Pty Ltd,
454 Forestry Road, Bluewater, Qld 4818
Tel 0411 602 737 ian@birdway.com.au
Bird Photos http://www.birdway.com.au/
Where to Find Birds in Northern Queensland: iTunesGoogle Play Kobo Books
Recorder Society http://www.nqrs.org.au


Lee’s Addition:

Seem’s as though Ian has written a book. Here is his newsletter telling about his “Diary of a Bird Photographer!”

His regular weekly newsletter – Ian’s Bird of the Week – will be published tomorrow.

Sunday Inspiration – Wren-Babblers, Crombecs and Bush Warblers

Mountain Tailorbird (Phyllergates cucullatus) by© Wiki

Mountain Tailorbird (Phyllergates cucullatus) by© Wiki

For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. (Colossians 1:16 NKJV)

I trust you are enjoying this Sunday Inspiration series of the Lord’s Creation of the PASSERIFORMES – Passerines (Songbirds) Order. This week’s collection of little Passerines are from three families. Of the 130 families in the Order, we have arrived at numbers 76, 77, and 78. By now, you have see over half the Songbird species in the world. Of the 40 Orders of Birds, the Passerines are the largest.

Scaly-breasted Wren-babbler (Pnoepyga albiventer) ©©

Scaly-breasted Wren-babbler (Pnoepyga albiventer) ©©

Immediately there fell from his eyes something like scales, and he received his sight at once; and he arose and was baptized. (Acts 9:18 NKJV)

Pnoepygidae – Wren-babbler has only five species and are endemic to southern and south eastern Asia. The genus contains four species. The genus has long been placed in the babbler family Timaliidae. A 2009 study of the DNA of the families Timaliidae and the Old World warblers (Sylviidae) found no support for the placement of the genus in either family, prompting the authors to erect a new monogeneric family, the Pnoepygidae.

Cape Grassbird (Sphenoeacus afer) ©WikiC

Cape Grassbird (Sphenoeacus afer) ©WikiC

Sing unto him, sing psalms unto him, talk ye of all his wondrous works. (1 Chronicles 16:9 KJV)

Macrosphenidae – Crombecs, African Warblers family has eighteen (18) members in its family. The African warblers are a newly erected family, Macrosphenidae, of songbirds. Most of the species were formerly placed in the Old World warbler family Sylviidae, although one species, the Rockrunner, was placed in the babbler family Timaliidae. A series of molecular studies of the Old World warblers and other bird families in the superfamily Sylvioidea (which includes the larks, swallows and tits) found that the African warblers were not part of the family Sylviidae but were instead an early offshoot (basal) to the entire Sylvioidea clade.

Chestnut-crowned Bush Warbler (Cettia major) ©WikiC

Chestnut-crowned Bush Warbler (Cettia major) ©WikiC

The simple inherit folly: but the prudent are crowned with knowledge. (Proverbs 14:18 KJV)

Cettiidae – Cettia Bush Warblers and Allies total up 32 species.

Cettiidae is a newly validated family of small insectivorous songbirds (“warblers”) It contains the typical bush warblers (Cettia) and their relatives. As common name, cettiid warblers is usually used.

Its members occur mainly in Asia and Africa, ranging into Wallacea and Europe. The monarch warblers (Erythrocercus), Tit Hylia Pholidornis and Green Hylia (Hylia) are exclusively found in the forests of Africa. The pseudo-tailorbirds, tesias and stubtails, as well as Tickellia and Abroscopus warblers are mostly found in the forests of south and southeastern Asia, with one species reaching as far north as Japan and Siberia. The genus Cettia has the widest distribution of the family, reaching from Western Europe across Asia to the Pacific islands of Fiji and Palau. Most of the species in the genus are sedentary, but the Asian Stubtail is wholly migratory and the Japanese Bush Warbler and Cetti’s Warbler are partly migratory over much of their range. A few species, such as the Pale-footed Bush Warbler, are altitudinal migrants.

The species are small, stubby birds. Most have moderately long to long tails, while the stubtails and tesias have tiny tails that do not even emerge past their tail retrices. The group is typically clad in dull plumage, often with a line above the eye. Some, like the monarch-warblers (Erythrocercus), are much different in appearance, having areas of bright yellow plumage. (Wikipedia)

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Listen as you watch the birds:

“Bow The Knee” ~ Sheila Vegter and Jacob (her son who is playing the piano and singing)

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Sunday Inspirations

PASSERIFORMES – Passerines (Songbirds)

Pnoepygidae – Wren-babbler

Macrosphenidae – Crombecs, African Warblers

Cettiidae – Cettia Bush Warblers and Allies

Good News

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Pileated Woodpeckers With a Chipmunk, One Singing, and One Eating

Pileated Woodpecker by Lee

Pileated Woodpecker by Lee

‘Ah, Lord GOD! Behold, You have made the heavens and the earth by Your great power and outstretched arm. There is nothing too hard for You. (Jeremiah 32:17 NKJV)

I always enjoy seeing Pileated Woodpeckers like this one at Circle B Bar Reserve here in the area. This was taken several years ago.

I found these videos on YouTube and they show the Pileated in a different way than we have observed them. Enjoy!

The first one is a YouTube by Dan & Joe. He discovers a chipmunk:

He has made the earth by His power; He has established the world by His wisdom, And stretched out the heaven by His understanding. (Jeremiah 51:15 NKJV)

Here’s another video of a Pileated Woodpecker Singing by Pureimaginationvideo:

This last one has a very good close-up of a Pileated digging for Grubs by Martyn Stewart:

But the LORD is the true God; He is the living God and the everlasting King. At His wrath the earth will tremble, And the nations will not be able to endure His indignation. Thus you shall say to them: “The gods that have not made the heavens and the earth shall perish from the earth and from under these heavens.” He has made the earth by His power, He has established the world by His wisdom, And has stretched out the heavens at His discretion. (Jeremiah 10:10-12 NKJV)

I have been reading through Jeremiah and these verse caught my attention.

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Birds of the World

Picidae – Woodpeckers Family

Who Paints the Leaves?

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