Journal archives for February 2022

February 25, 2022

Forest of the porcupines

It was a sunny afternoon at Tai Po Kau, quiet in terms of both birds and visitors. Great Barbets were calling, but as usual remained well out of sight in the treetops. Among the more active birds were Yellow-crested Tits and Velvet-fronted Nuthatches, both introduced species which are established in and around the nature reserve. Orange-bellied Leafbirds and Fork-tailed Sunbirds were feeding on the the Rhodoeleia blossoms.

I took the short cut across the stream to the Red Walk, leading to the scenic Blue Walk loop as recommended by David Diskin in his invaluable guidebook, Hong Kong Nature Walks: the New Territories. As usual, David's recommendation was spot-on. Soon after embarking on the less-travelled Blue Walk, I encountered a 'bird wave' including Huet's Fulvettas, Grey-Chinned Minivets and various unidentified leaf warblers. While I was attempting to photograph the phylloscopi for further research, two East Asian Porcupines came ambling onto the path, intending to cross it at exactly the spot where I was crouched. They were larger than I had imagined - especially at a range of around 3 feet - and I got as much of a shock as they did, stopping dead in their tracks before trundling off into the forest.

Posted on February 25, 2022 11:48 AM by stephenmatthews stephenmatthews | 3 observations | 0 comments | Leave a comment