A POEM FROM OUR OWN BARD. NICK GORDON
BAGGED & TAGGED!!
I have a little package,
It’s strapped upon my back,
It’s there to send you messages,
My progress so to track
You can follow me to Africa,
Or maybe just to Spain,
And in another year or two,
You’ll see me back with you again.
I know that some don’t like it,
I wasn’t sure myself,
But it really doesn’t bother me,
And it won’t affect my health.
Pretty soon I’ll be a “stompie”
As I “dance” upon the edge,
I’ll flap my wings like crazy,
Until I’m strong enough to fledge!!
Then I’ll head off south I guess,
And you can follow on your screen
Not really knowing where I’m headed,
But you’ll see exactly where I’ve been!!!!
Another installment from Julie. Its nice to know that at least one of us has had a holiday with sun and heat.
Borneo Adventure – Part 4
After a very restful nights sleep, it was time to pack up, have breakfast and move on further down the river to our next lodge.
We climbed aboard the boat, stowed our luggage and settled down for an hours trip down the Kinabatangan river, in the early morning mist. We kept an eye out for any wildlife on the way, there were dozens of Great White Egrets and Oriental Darters and the ever present bright flashes of Kingfishers.
We arrived at Abai Jungle Lodge at 8.30 am where our guide Iro introduced us to our new guide, George. Now George turned out to be quite a character. He was named George Spencer by his mother, after the doctor who delivered him, told her he had no sons! We laughed all day long by his stories. He even had a scar on his leg, where he was bitten by a Macaque. He was particularly chosen to be our guide as he was an expert on birds, he even had a pet owl, who we were to meet later!
We were shown to our chalet, once again a fabulous room with air con and very nice shower room. After a cup of local coffee watching a pair of White Collared Kingfishers
WHITE COLLARED KINGFISHER
on the jetty, it was time for the first activity of the day, a visit over the river to Abai village to plant a tree each. The Bornean government were getting concerned that the traditional river villages were being deserted by the people, leaving to go to towns where work was easier to find in the plantations. So they are working with the WWF to encourage the villagers to stay. The government have built new houses and schools and WWF have funded and supplied seeds to grow fruit trees, which are sponsored by tourists and when large enough are planted at the reserves, places like Tabin and Sepilok for the Orangutans and other wildlife and birds. The lads from Abai village work the boats on the river and work at the Lodges, so it’s a win win deal for all. They even make the labels for the trees out of drink cans, recycling at its best. I have a beautiful little basket woven out of a plastic carrier bag, which I bought from one of the girls who makes things to sell to the visitors.
The school was incredible, all sports catered for and a great computor room. Some of the classes only have 3 children in them and take ages from 5 to 15, each year having a teacher and classroom of its own.
Tim and I planted our tiny trees ( Mallotus Muticus ) and were given a certificate, we can check up in the future, to see how our trees are doing and where they are eventually planted.
Soon it was time to leave and as it had been raining, back to dry off, before lunch. We were distracted on the way by a big bird circling over the river, we were told it was a Brahminy Kite, wow, it was spectacular! After another very tasty lunch of chicken and fish, we had some free time before the next trip on the river.
At 4.30 after tea and cake, we set off with George on the boat, back up the river. We spotted many birds and monkeys, stopping from time to time to take photos, but it was clear that George was looking for something other than these creatures, then, there ahead of us on the bank of the river, Bornean pygmy Elephants! A group of about 20, females with their young. One of them, very near the rivers edge had a sleepy newborn, adorable. We stayed about an hour just quietly watching them and chatting with George all about their behaviour. As you can imagine, I took loads of photos, but mainly just savored the joy of being so close to these wonderful creatures, the sounds and the smells, loving every single minute. The hour passed all too quickly, dusk was falling and it was time to return to the lodge.
On our return a Bearded pig had come to the lodge for his tea! We changed for dinner, but had a quick 20 minute trip back onto the river to watch fireflies in the trees. Little twinkly lights, like a lit up Christmas tree, magical. As we approached the jetty, George started calling in a strange way, something returned the call! It was Stinky, a Buffy Fish-owl, he had rescued as a youngster. It was sat on a pole by the resturant, waiting for him to give him a sausage, his favorite snack, apparently.
BUFFY FISH OWL
We enjoyed another dinner by the riverside, then after a leisurely coffee joined George and one of the Abai lads for a night walk, looking for nocturnal creatures. We saw lots of birds sleeping in trees, a Borneon Blue- flycatcher, Black Capped and Oriental Dwarf- kingfishers,Racket Tailed- drongo. Also many creepie- crawlies, a Scorpian, spiders, Lantern beetles, Gecko, Red Crickets. We both found the walk very interesting, because it is something you don’t get chance to do very often.
Borneon Blue- flycatcher
We were ready for our beds again that night, it had been a day full of fun and wonderful sights. I went to bed thinking of it all, mostly the Ellies.
FISH DELIVERIES 2 01.15 All has been fairly quiet so far. Lady has been sat on the side of the nest either sleeping or preening and the chick has woken a few times and preened but stayed in the nestcup 01.24 Lady’s awake and seems to be watching/listening to some 02.37 Lady and the chick sleeping for now. Very quiet on the nest tonight 03.42 Lady has been awake now for the last 25 minutes just looking around. She has not moved off of the same spot since midnight 03.48 Its getting light now 03.50 Lady flies off now 03.51 Lady lands back onto the edge of the nest 04.16 Laddie arrives for his morning vist 04.18 Day camera switches over now 04.20 Laddie’s off now 04.29 The chick tries using its wings a couple of time 05.04 Lady flies off 05.29 Lady’s back now 05.52 Lady is off again 06.04 FISH DELIVERY !! Laddie arrives with a Huge Fish Delivery and Lady lands right at the back of him. She must have seen him with the fish 06 18 Lady is feeding juvie. 06 38 Lady is feeding,.Blue 44 standing flapping his wings 06 54 Both standing at the far side looking out. 06 57 Laddie landed and he takes the remains of the fish and flies off. 08.15 Lady flies off 08.58 HD Camera on now 09 11 Blue 44 on his own. Water on the camera lens 09.16 Lady’s back and its raining now 09 18 Lady is back. She treads on Blue 44′s tail, bringing him to his feet. 09.21 Lady tries to shelter the chick now from the rain 09 26 Lady sits in Blue 44′s head to shelter him from the rain. 09.31 Laddie flies in and sits with his family 09.33 BLUE 44 TRYING TO GET FURTHER UNDER LADY FOR SHELTER 09.34 Laddie’s off now 09.43 LADDIE JUST ARRIVED BACK – NO FISH 09.45 ALL THREE NOW LOOKING OUT OVER THE LOCH 09.46 Lady flies off now 09 47 LADDIE been and gone, LADY standing next to Blue 44, she flies off. 09 48 Laddie is back and moves a twig 09 52 Laddie flies away 10.18 BLUE 44 STILL ALONE 10 43 Close up of Lady sitting in the dead tree 10.47 Blue 44 lying in the nest, alone. 11 11 The camera caught Lady flying back to the nest. 12 02 Blue 44 preening ruthlessly, will he have feathers left, 12 25 Lady, Blue 44 Standing, edge of nest, interested in something, to close to the edge, 13 45 Lady flies off and comes straight back 13 50 Blue 44 standing edge of nest, he comes back down again, 14.45 – Laddie arrives with a great clump of something, flies off 14 49 Laddie with more grass and stuff, what is he like !! 14 55 LADDIE flies off,, 15 07 ISLA flies off the nest, 15 09 ISLA back again 15 30 LADDIE in with another clump ! 15 38 BLUE 44 doing a lot of wing flapping now,, 15 44 Blue 44 practicing holding and tearing,, useing a clump to get him strong,, 16 42 LADDIE flies off the nest 16 45 ISLA flies off the nest,, INTRUDER !!! 16 47 ISLA back and piping with pride,, she has seen the intruder off !! 16 53 ISLA flies off the nest again, that intruder to deal with once more 17 11 ISLA lands and Laddie too 17 15 Lady, standing on one leg, is chirping and Laddie flies off 17 19 Lady picks up a stick , drops it on Blue 44 twice. 18.58 – Lady back – looks like she brought in a stick 19.29 – Lady brings in another stick – they are getting desperate!! 21-10 Laddie arrived with a fish.
The Dyfi Osprey Project and the Scottish wildlife Trust have kindly given their permission for us to post still and video images from their webcams. To visit their sites please click on the relevant link. Loch of the Lowes. Dyfi Osprey Project.
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