Nature Notes

January 31, 2013

Martinsville (Martins Mill) Covered Bridge, Vermont

Filed under: Covered Bridge,Vermont — Tags: , — Harold Stiver @ 6:00 am

 

Martinsville (Martins Mill) Covered Bridge, Vermont

Martinsville (Martins Mill) Covered Bridge, Vermont


When Built: 1881

Builders: James F. Tasker

Description: The ruins of the old mill are near the bridge. The area is quiet now but once had a busy industrial operation.

This is part of a series on Vermont’s Covered Bridges. You can find an index here.

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January 30, 2013

Birding La Camargue, Southern France

Filed under: Birds,France,Video — Tags: , , — Harold Stiver @ 6:00 am

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My first bird video is above. I got a Canon HV20 for a family wedding, and of course I had to video some birds with it. I suspect Spielberg doesn’t feel threatened.

The delta of the Rhone River in southern France is known as La Camargue, bounded by the city of Arles in the North and the Mediterranean Sea in the south. See a map.  It is one of the top birding areas in Europe. It is made up of lakes, marsh lands and brine lagoons, and is a haven for a wide variety of birds, resident or migratory.

One of the best spots is the Pont de Gau Ornithological Park situated a few km. before the town of Stes Maries de la Mer. It has several kilometers of trails and boardwalks and a number if hides. In the lagoons, you will have close views of Greater Flamingo, Gray Heron, Little Egret, Cattle Egret, Black-crowned Night-Heron, Yellow-legged, Black-headed and Mediterranean Gull, Common Pochard, Common Shelduck, Red-crested Pochard and Marbled Teal. Most of these species breed here, and we saw chicks of Black-winged Stilt and Pied Avocet. A nice surprise was a bird I had not seen before, the Eurasian Spoonbill. The introduced Sacred Ibis, as well as White Storks flew about.

Throughout the whole of La Camargue you may find interesting species like Yellowhammer, Eurasian Reed-Warbler, Blackcap, Sardinian Warbler, Hoopoe and Black Kite.

While we visited in June, I’m sure any time of year would offer some excellent birding.


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January 28, 2013

Birding Cape Point Reserve: South Africa

Filed under: Birds,South Africa — Tags: , — Harold Stiver @ 6:00 am


Cape Sugarbird

At the Southwest tip of Africa is the Cape Point. It is close to the meeting point of the Atlantic and Indian Oceans, and although the climate can be moderate, the seas can be rough. Indeed the original name in Portuguese translated as Cape of Storms until the early spin doctors had it changed to Cape of Good Hope.Mammals are represented by the Caracal, Chacma Baboons, and a wide variety of bucks including the large Bontebok.


The bird species are spectacular. Ostriches roam about unconcerned by the many visitors, Orange Breasted Sunbird, Cape Bulbul and Cape Sugarbirds (all endemic to the south of South Africa), 4 species of Cormorants, and the endangered African Oystercatcher.Just outside the Reserve is a famous colony of Jackass or African Penguins at Simonstown.


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January 27, 2013

Orleans Falls: Ontario Waterfalls

Filed under: Ontario,Waterfalls — Tags: , — Harold Stiver @ 6:00 am
Orleans Falls: Ontario Waterfalls

Orleans Falls: Ontario Waterfalls

A small falls on Taylor Creek in Orleans

GPS Location: N 45° 29.250′ W 75° 29.338′

Rating:

Warning: It can be dangerous to view and photograph waterfalls. The footing can be wet and slippery, and an accidental fall can result in serious injury or death. Note also that many sections of waterfalls are on private property. Please respect these rights.

Go to the Index to Ontario Waterfalls

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January 26, 2013

Birding Tamara Negara: Malaysia

Filed under: Birds,Malaysia — Tags: , — Harold Stiver @ 6:00 am

Oriental Magpie Robin

This National Park is a lowland rain forest, with a range of services available, from camping to more luxurious arrangements.

The trip in is 3 hours by boat down the Trembeling River, and a few bird species can be seen from the boat, particularly Kingfishers.

The area around the resort has a number of excellent trails as well as some blinds. The resort area itself was good for Oriental Magpie Robin, Pink-necked Pigeon,and Oriental Hornbill.
There is a canopy walkway which gets you up at eye level with many species  and it is well worth a visit. It unfortunately was not open at ideal times for birders (10 AM to 2PM), and the operators  seem happier if you don’t linger. The best canopy bird was a Wallace’s Hawk Eagle which perched on a branch only a dozen meters in front of me.

It rained very heavily every night for 5-6 hours, but only a little during the day. This resulted in very muddy slippery trails, and made birding hard work, but well worth the effort.


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January 25, 2013

Cambridge Junction (Poland, Station) Covered Bridge, Vermont

Filed under: Covered Bridge,Vermont — Tags: , — Harold Stiver @ 6:00 am

 

Cambridge Junction (Poland, Station) Covered Bridge, Vermont

Cambridge Junction (Poland, Station) Covered Bridge, Vermont


When Built: 1887

Builders: George H. Holmes

Description: The bridge and road are currently closed, and since there are nearby roads that can be used, it is problematic whether it may re-open.It is the second longest single span covered bridge in Vermont.

 

Cambridge Junction (Poland, Station) Covered Bridge, Vermont

Cambridge Junction (Poland, Station) Covered Bridge, Vermont

This is part of a series on Vermont’s Covered Bridges. You can find an index here.

All Images are Available for Licensing at Singular Video&Pix

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January 24, 2013

Orkney Birding: Westry

Filed under: Birds,Orkney Isles — Tags: , — Harold Stiver @ 6:00 am

Atlantic Puffin

Noup Head  is a series of cliffs on the island of Westry which can be reached from a car ferry from the town of Kirkwall. The ferry over is excellent for auks, skuas, and gulls.

These cliffs are one of the largest seabird colonies in the world. Among the breeding species are Common Guillemot or Murre, Razorbill , Black Legged Kittiwake ,and Rock Pipits. In addition there has been a huge Arctic Tern colony containing over 10,000 birds. However on my last visit, there was almost no terns, apparently the local eel fish have been decimated by foreign fishing.

South of Noup Head is a rock formation called the Castle O’ Burrian at Stanger Head. The main attraction here is the Atlantic Puffin. There are 800 breeding pairs  and you can watch them from very close at hand. You would be hard put to find a more enjoyable birding experience than spending a few hours watching the Puffin colony on a beautiful day.

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January 22, 2013

Birding by the ocean, Mexico

Filed under: Birds,Mexico — Tags: , — Harold Stiver @ 6:00 am

Brown Booby

An early morning visit to the shore of the Pacific near Puerto Vallarta will produce an excellent variety of birds. I found Semipalmated and Wilson’s Plover, as well as Whimbrel, Willet, Spotted Sandpiper, and Surfbird.  On the ocean itself, Magnificent Frigatebird were common, often seen harassing Heerman’s and Laughing Gulls. Bridled and Sooty Terns were seen, and Brown and Blue-footed Booby.


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