Archive for the ‘birds of the Kathmandu Valley’ Category

Happy New Year 2017!

in animals, birds, birds of the Kathmandu Valley, Laz the dog, pets

This morning when I opened my front door, the first thing I saw was a large, white-breasted kingfisher sitting high atop a tree just a short distance from the house. While it’s not an uncommon bird to see in Nepal, I can’t recall having ever seen one at this time of year before, so it was a lovely new year surprise, and especially nice to have it be the first thing I saw when I stepped outside on the first day of the new year. It stayed up there for quite a while, too, even returning after flying off for a bit, so perhaps I’ll see it again. A small thing, but it made me very happy.

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It was rather a grey morning, so it didn’t photograph well, but I wanted to share it anyway. And to make up for that picture quality, I also give you Laz: enjoying a Christmas bone and not enjoying a Christmas hat, respectively. 🙂

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And now for something completely different…

in baya weaver, birds of the Kathmandu Valley, daily life, Nepal

Nepal has a crazy amazing variety of birds — nearly a tenth of the known birds in the world are represented in this diminutive strip of land. And while I’ve seen some beautiful birds in my years here, since moving to this house last September, I’ve begun to think I might have landed right in the middle of in a bird sanctuary!

I inherited my trusty guide, Birds of Nepal (Fleming, Fleming, & Bangdel: 2000), from a previous housemate, and it is wonderful. While  some drawings  occasionally don’t resemble the birds quite as much as they could, where it really shines is in the area of providing relevant detail that helps to identify the birds described. The Fleming father-son ornithological team have seen 97% of the birds in the book in the field themselves, and they fill their descriptions with specifics and pointers that make identification easier for a newb like me.

I’ve not been able to get many good pictures of the birds I’ve seen, but earlier this week I spotted a cluster of nests in the bamboo grove just down the road from me.

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They turned out to be baya weavers. Common to Nepal, a first for me!

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