Birding Chongming Island in summer time – 10,000 Birds

Birding Chongming Island in summer time – 10,000 Birds

Shanghai’s Chongming Island is a well known vacation spot for birders, and can most likely change into much more essential given the continued destruction of Nanhui. But it’s typically really useful to go there in winter. On this submit, I need to present that going there in summer time might also be value it.

One unusual factor about Chongming is the inevitable presence of individuals fishing. Not professionally – these folks are available SUVs and possibly by no means recapture their gasoline cash from the fish they catch (although come to think about it, neither do I with my chook photographs). I as soon as had a cat who beloved to lick plastic luggage, and whereas I discover the pleasure on this onerous to grasp, it nonetheless appears extra comprehensible to me than the enjoyment (?) of catching extraordinarily small fish.

A number of the momentary fishponds (or flooded fields?) at the moment are being drained – a really enticing second for the egrets and herons of Chongming.

Some variations in animal habits are fairly placing. The Little Egretalthough comparatively small and thus presumably susceptible to predators, goes for a “f*ck this” strategy – “I’m white, and I don’t care if anyone sees me”.

In distinction, the a lot larger Purple Hero tries to be invisible as a lot as potential, not solely by way of its coloration but additionally by typically taking over the posture of an expert Limbo dancer.

The Yellow Bittern is equally secretive, however far more profitable at being invisible, as it’s a lot smaller.

If you’re an individual who enjoys analyzing the stuff regurgitated by chook chicks, you most likely want to have participated in a research wanting on the weight loss plan of Yellow Bitterns in South Korea. This is able to have allowed you to summarize your expertise in sentences comparable to “A complete of 98 boluses regurgitated by 52 chicks aged 1 day to 11 days after hatching type the pattern and are proven to comprise 323 meals objects.” And after separating all of the elements of the boluses and presumably weighing them, your conclusion would have been that “essentially the most frequently occurring meals objects recorded are fish (63%) and bugs (33%)” (the opposite 4% are the few remaining bits of chocolate and gummy bears dropped at the chicks by their grandparents. That is okay as birds should not have enamel anyway).

I don’t get too many feedback on my weblog posts, however plainly every time I write about jacanas – whether or not in Africa, Australia, or Asia – there’s an unusually excessive variety of reactions (properly, perhaps one or two fairly than the same old zero) from feminine readers. Probably, there are two totally different causes for this – I believe they each are at work, although normally not in the identical particular person. One is from girls who want their husbands would take part extra in parenting their kids – as in jacanas, that is the only job of the male. The opposite, barely scarier one is from girls who relish the concept of ​​having what the smut literature calls a “reverse harem” – they appear to take pleasure in the truth that feminine jacanas attempt to mate with a number of males.

Facet observe: Certainly, in the event you comply with the titles of newly revealed books, you will notice that there’s a fixed movement of “Reverse harem” publications. One other puzzling factor to me, as for me, the perfect variety of folks to dwell with could be someplace between zero and one however positively not above 1. Finish of facet observe.

To feminine readers then: the Pheasant-tailed Jacana.

Ladies who like jacanas will most likely additionally like Noticed Redshanks. In keeping with the HBW, when breeding, male birds do a lot of the incubation and parenting whereas females usually depart the nest as much as one week earlier than the eggs hatch. Dominic Couzens writes that “Earlier than the top of incubation, normally per week earlier than hatching, the females hand over the pretense of parental curiosity fully and … rapidly depart south for, one assumes, a spot of well-deserved post-breeding molting and hassle- free feeding”.

An unlucky consequence is that many adolescent Noticed Redshanks undergo from nervousness and a sense of loss from by no means having seen their mom.

However perhaps that’s really an excellent factor. In keeping with Couzens, after laying the eggs, females typically instantly abandon their first mate and pair up with one other male. Perhaps higher to not ever meet such a “mom” (on condition that I’ve been residing in China for too lengthy to be up-to-date relating to political correctness and so forth., I’m not certain whether or not it’s okay to make use of the phrase “slut “My guess is it’s not).

After all, on Chongming, the Chinese language Pond Heron is quite common.

The place it’s not – for instance, in Japan – it can have difficulties discovering a companion to mate.

The answer for one feminine Chinese language Pond Heron in a Japanese heronry: mating with a Little Egret (supply). Sadly, within the science of language, this doesn’t sound notably raunchy however fairly like a rational resolution: “A uncommon species such because the Chinese language Pond Heron may select heterospecific mates fairly than abandoning all probabilities of copy.”

I can see how this line of pondering results in every kind of sci-fi varieties of thought (“would I mate with an alien if I used to be the final human on earth”, and so forth.), however on the one hand, this isn’t a sci-fi weblog and I’m not occupied with science fiction (excluding in fact Douglas Adams), and alternatively, the reply from my facet could be “no” anyway.

Chinese language Pond Herons additionally develop on bushes.

In “Plunder“, The Felice Brothers sing about individuals who “bought machines that make machines and people machines make extra machines”. On Chongming, the state of affairs isn’t fairly as complicated. We solely have Frequent Moorhens that makes extra Frequent Moorhens.

Although I assume these then go on to make extra moorhens as properly.

Severe facet observe: All songs I point out on this weblog are songs I like and which are value listening – I don’t point out something only for bird-related lyrics or as a part of a joke. That signifies that

a. It’s all the time value following the hyperlinks to those tracks, in case you are occupied with music and a minimum of roughly share my style in music

b. Must you accomplish that and discover that you don’t like a tune you thus listened to, you may be assured that you’re mistaken and that your style in music is dangerous.

It’s considerably of a simplification, however mainly there are two varieties of scientific papers – people who require quite a lot of onerous work and intelligent pondering, and people that don’t. Wanting up latest papers on the Gray-headed LapwingI discovered one titled “Farmers’ Notion on Gray-headed Lapwing (Vanellus cinereus) Existence in Paddy Area Surrounding Gifu College, Japan”.

Some exceptional elements of this paper:

It lined 10 farmers situated close to Gifu College, the place the paper was written. How handy.

It consists mainly of asking the farmers some questions through a questionnaire. How environment friendly.

It discovered that farmers mainly ignore the existence of the lapwing of their fields. How shocking.

It concludes that human exercise influences the breeding exercise of the lapwing. Once more, how shocking (although it’s not fairly clear to me how they bought to that conclusion, as apparently, they didn’t ship out questionnaires to the lapwings in query).

Now comes my query: Which of the 2 classes described do you suppose this paper belongs to?

This Cattle Egret has simply learn a paper stating that it could be 3.6 occasions extra environment friendly in its foraging if there have been cows round. No marvel it appears a bit pissed off.

To help the Ukrainian struggle effort, I want to point out a paper on Black-winged Stilt authored by a number of researchers of Kharkiv College in Ukraine (I do know the above doesn’t make any sense however I believe it sounds type of enjoyable, the overblown ego of an irrelevant weblog submit author pondering his work has any affect on something).

The paper is titled “Breeding of black-winged stilt Himantopus himantopus in muddy websites of a wastewater therapy plant“.

So far as I can inform, the paper doesn’t have any fascinating outcomes, however that’s not the purpose, proper? Most likely the Ukrainian tune was not one of the best entrant on the Eurovision Track Contest however nonetheless, folks had been comfortable that it gained …

The Black-crowned Night time Heros Latin title is Nycticorax nycticorax, which instantly makes me consider “New York New York so good they named it twice”. Then I sometimes must spend the subsequent 3-5 minutes eradicating the vomit from my garments, desk, and furnishings.

The connection between Black-crowned Night time Herons and Frequent Terns appears to be as bizarre as the connection in most human {couples}. On the one hand, Black-crowned Night time Herons may be predators in Frequent Tern colonies (supply). Alternatively, there have been studies of Black-crowned Night time Heron chicks being adopted by Frequent Terns (supply). Some type of “Turning the opposite cheek” strategy by the presumably non-Christian Terns?

I assume that is an Oriental Skylark fairly than a Eurasian one, although my identification is solely based mostly on chance. Or you might state it extra elegantly, I’m placing Occam’s razor to work.

(which on this case really means apparently fairly than simply being a imprecise first phrase in an in any other case boring assertion), on the Tibetan Plateau, nests of Oriental Skylarks near the burrows of Mountain Pikas are much less doubtless to achieve success than nests additional away from burrows (supply). Evidently because the Mountain Pika is the principle meals supply for some predators, you higher not dwell too near them, as you may find yourself as bycatch. This reality is now taught in skylark colleges everywhere in the world and has led to a robust NPIMBY motion among the many skylarks – “no pikas in my yard”.

When you have ever heard the fairly ugly vocalization of the Oriental Reed Warbler (which eBird describes as a “harsh, grating rattling”), you’ll be fairly grateful to the Frequent Cuckoo for choosing this chook as an essential host species.

My principle is that some Oriental Reed Warblers intentionally settle for the eggs of Frequent Cuckoos as even they like the sound of the cuckoo to their very own vocalization. Now I simply want to seek out some grant cash to attempt to show my principle.

I’m not certain whether or not this Eurasian Hoopoe is a juvenile, molting or only a fan of a fairly run-down look.

To my shock, I realized that the hoopoe is or was additionally a visitor (or ought to I say exhibit?) at Disney’s Animal Kingdom (supply). I have no idea whether or not meaning they’ve to decorate up in Mickey Mouse ears or not.

What occurs when an space with nests of Reed Parrotbills will get flooded? A paper has studied this query. The findings are fairly fascinating.

So, after the flood (which had destroyed some nests), the parrotbills positioned their new nests a lot larger, at a peak of about 1.2 meters as a substitute of 0.7 meters earlier than (I’ve no intention to additionally provide you with these heights in some outdated outdated measures – US readers, you might be by yourself right here. I gave up my US citizenship a number of years in the past and latest occasions comparable to “Proper vs. Flawed”, it was one in every of my higher selections. Finish of political rant).

Seems like intelligent habits by the parrotbills, proper? In scientific parlance, you wouldn’t name it intelligent although however speak in regards to the parrotbills’ “behavioral plasticity of their nest-site choice”.

However: the upper nests had been far more uncovered to predation and thus had a a lot decrease success charge – one thing that in Kai parlance is named “a serious fuckup” however which within the paper is put in a a lot much less vulgar means (I assume the authors should not have a historical past of listening to various/punk music and watching Ricky Gervais movies):

“Animals’ response to uncommon climatic occasions, comparable to flooding, might produce ecological traps in the event that they make the animals extra vulnerable to different kinds of threats they’re extra more likely to proceed to come across.”

In my phrases: the parrotbills fucked up. Good to understand it doesn’t solely occur to me.