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2020-11-23 : 8:44 pm : +0100


Some recent Discovering Alpine Birds posts

Discovering Alpine Birds
Birding, digiscoping, frogging, batting, mammaling, and everything else-ing. In fact anything that has to do with watching and being in nature in the Alps (and my various travels) appeals to me. in Tirol, Austria, we call this Nature Watch.
the Macaws and I
Saturday, 11. December 2010 (Dale Forbes) 10000 Birds
Parrots are one of my favorite groups of birds. It all started with me getting involved in a research project at university studying the Cape Parrot (Poicephalus robustus) - an incredibly intelligent and beautiful parrot with a huge bill and a unique demeanor. I subsequently got the opportunity to work on a few different parrot species and spent three years studying Scarlet Macaws in Costa Rica: enigmatic, fabulously bright and really big.And recently I have started to write a little bit about them again...Scarlet Macaw feeding on a Beach Almond nut. Photo (c) Franck & Christine Dziubak.In my regular fortnightly blog post on 10,000 Birds, I started with an article that looked at relationships between individuals in a macaw society...
Stone Chats galore
Saturday, 30. October 2010 (Dale Forbes) Digiscoping
I have just gotten back from an awesome 6 days in Extremadura (western Spain), a bird-lovers paradise. It was wonderful to be in the sun again (it was snowing at home and in Extremadura we were sitting in shorts, baking in the sun).One of the things we did a few times while we were in Extremadura is to drive out on the road through the steppes from Belen (near Trujillo). In the afternoon, the sun is directly behind you and the light on two of the afternoons was absolutely spectacular. Jörg and I had a lot of fun digiscoping all the little passerines that lines the road and buzzed around in the steppes.Here are some of the stonchats I digiscoped there:playing with the blue sky as a backgroundthe wonderfully golden browns of the steppes...
10th Tata Goose Festival
Sunday, 17. October 2010 (Dale Forbes) Hungary
At the end of November, the bird conservation groups in Hungary (MME, the Birdlife Partner & SzVTE, a local volunteer-based conservation organisation) organise a spectacular bird festival in the ancient town of Tata, about an hour west of Budapest. The town surrounds a huge ancient reservoir (man-made lake, Öreg Tó) on which many thousands of geese roost overnight in winter.People gathered to enjoy the geese coming in from the fieldsIn order to keep the disturbance of the over-wintering geese to a minimum, the local authorities and conservation organisations have worked together to limit the number of lights around the lake such that even though one is in the middle of a town/city, the lake is surprisingly dark at night. The one...
Is it not enough to have your heart in the right place?
Friday, 15. October 2010 (Dale Forbes)
At the beginning of the year I got to meet Andreas Kieling, an absolutely fascinating man. How to describe him. I suppose wildlife film-maker is probably how he is described most often. But it is normally rather silly to try to sum complex people up by a description of their job, so I'll try to share something of what I felt of him. A complex man who, in person, is rather quiet and unassuming. But the man has spent such a huge amount of his time over the last 20 years just being in nature, that he is filled with an awe for nature. He oozes it. And people around him feel this and if you have any remote interest in our planet and her complexities, then you cannot help but being drawn in to his bubble of nature appreciation and...
Playing with the new Panasonic G2
Sunday, 03. October 2010 (Dale Forbes)
We got the Panasonic Lumix G2 just a few weeks ago and the Photokina in Cologne was the first time I had a little bit of time to play with it and see what it could do.To be brutally honest, I was not expecting much - something like a camera trying to be a real camera but not really living up to the promise. The Lumix G2 was a pleasant surprise.The pictures here were all taken on my morning/evening walks between our hotel (near the stunningly beautiful Cologne cathedral), and the Photokina expo hall. The Hohenzollern Bridge is one of the most wonderful places I discovered in my (short) time in Cologne, 409m long (1350ft) and decorated with love padlocks (Liebesschlösse). a really old lock. where on earth did they find this lock?I loved...
new Panasonic Lumix GH2 for Digiscoping
Sunday, 26. September 2010 (Dale Forbes)
At the Photokina last week, I got to spend a good 1/2 hour with a pre-production model of the Panasonic Lumix GH2, and so got it on a UCA, behind a telescope to check it out for digiscoping.The new Panasonic Lumix GH2, ready for digiscopingThe GH2 is Panasonic's latest mirror-less micro 4/3s system camera and features a 16MP 17.3x13.0mm sensor. I was not allowed to put my memory card in to the GH2, but looking at the images on the camera, the performance at 800 ISO was surprisingly good (better than the G2?) and certainly usable for most situations. Given that the sensor is smaller than the average DSLR's APS-C sensor, the camera needs less light to get a usable shutter speed, and it has no mirror flap, so this ISO800 is likely to be...