Sunday, February 11, 2018

Chinese New Year 2018 Travel Time Advisory

Plus Highway has published the Travel Time Advisory for Chinese New Year 2018, Year of the Earth Dog. Chinese character for Dog is 狗 which is pronounced as "Gou." I've updated my website layout with a new Chinese New Year 2018 cartoon mascot from 8TV called "Gou Gou" (transliteration). 8TV theme for Chinese New Year is "Go Go Wonderful" and if you click on this dog cartoon mascot, it will take you to their website. Plus Highway is also offering a 20% toll rebate for Touch n Go cardholders who are travelling more than 100km on 12, 13, 20 and 21 February 2018. Birdwatchers and birders would be on the move during that week as well:)    

Sunday, February 4, 2018

Bird Counts in Malaysia 2018

 Olive-backed Sunbird was feeding on the flowers of this tree by the side of the dirt road. This Sunbird is also a frequent visitor to my family home in Johor, as well as the nesting Pacific Swallows.

The Asian Waterbird Census was held from 6th to 21st January 2018. Wetlands International's
website has more information about this Census, which you can read here. Have to confess that
Waders baffle me. I missed the Little Curlew when it made a brief transit stop in Johor last year 2017. I was lucky enough to get good views of the Small Pratincole in Johor during AWC 2016. A spotting scope is one of the essential tools required when wader watching especially since the tides may push the waders to feed further away from shorelines. One of the most memorable moments for me, was to see the Spoon-billed Sandpiper at the Gulf of Thailand. I had undergone ACL surgery at KPJ Damanasara Hospital at that time as well as a month of physiotherapy sessions that year - it was my second overseas trip to Thailand for birdwatching (the first being many years ago with friends from Malacca and NS). My story of this special encounter with the Spoon-billed Sandpiper was posted at that time in Wordpress but due to security flaws and a local hosting provider that has discontinued their operations, I no longer use that Wordpress platform, as explained here. With my birdwatcher friend from Hong Kong, Wendy at the Welcome Party for Asian Bird Fair 2012 in our hotel at Samut Prakhan, Thailand:-
Time to go look for the list of birds seen in Thailand which were scribbled down on paper since this was pre-eBird. Thailand is a country that is rich with avifauna diversity and is definitely worth visiting again to see birds unique to that country and region. Read about an incidental bird (that turned up when I was in Thailand for a family wedding)  here.    

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