Monday, 17 November 2008

Laughing Moorhens

So, Moorhens then. A common bird across the world, but are they all the same 'species'? Martin Garners book "Frontiers in Birding" has a chapter all about sorting out Moorhens from the States. However, he only mentions that cachinnans (or Laughing Moorhen in the book) has a range from North America down to Mexico and Central America, Bermuda and the West Indes, with a winter range sporaically to South America If this is true what are the birds breeding throughout South America - are they cachinnans too? (I will have to look this up.)

These images are of some Moorhens at REGUA in the Atlantic rainforests of Brazil. They have a deeper voice, look a little bigger and also have a squarer top to their sheild:

And this one is from Madagascar. Looks pretty similar to me, with the same shaped sheild. Unfortunately I never noticed if the call was deeper on these birds:

Tuesday, 4 November 2008

Swallow-tailed Cotinga

A simply gorgeous bird. We saw many Swallow-tailed Cotingas on this tour, and we never tired of seeing them - absolutely stunning. However this wasn't the rarest Cotinga we saw on our travels - we also scored Grey-winged Cotinga at Pico de Caledonia! Unfortunately I never got a shot of it though, dispite it landing around ten meters from where Carrie and I were standing...


Birds weren't the only thing on the agenda for our trip to Brazil. These Manned Wolves at Cara├ža Monastery are fed every night on chicken and kitchen scraps by the monks. They attract quite a crowd and up to 100 people can be seen sitting around the patio waiting for these amazing animals to come in each evening.

Three-toed Jacamar

These Three-toed Jacamars were at a secret stakeout our guide showed us. We saw six in all along the road sides!

Brazil nuts

Just back from two weeks birding in the south-east of Brazil. Some excellent birds and mamals were seen including these two Brazilian Mergansers at their usual stake out near Serra da Canastra. October 2008.

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