A Predictable Retraction – 10,000 Birds

Very early within the yr, I wrote a publish on this weblog about what I assumed was a robust contender for BOTY (Chook of the Yr) right here in Trinidad & Tobago. It was on one among my nemesis birds, one which I’ve finally gone on to see and listen to a number of occasions since. All year long, nevertheless, I’ve been ready for a hen to steal the highlight – and a few weeks in the past, it occurred.

When one picks up a discipline information and leafs by means of it, oftentimes some illustrations appear to leap out of the pages. At this level, it’s customary to mood one’s expectations by inspecting the “Standing and Distribution” part. Is it potential? Actually, something is feasible. Birds have wings, proper? Nothing ready me to listen to the information of a sighting of a lone Sungrebe at an area pond, although.

Firstly, I’ve spent many hours scouring ponds on this location (even wrote concerning the place) and whereas I will not be in possession of the all-seeing eye, a part of me all the time hoped that I’d discover one thing unbelievable and noteworthy there. Nonetheless, thanks to 2 native birders who shared their sighting, the small birding group on the island was rightfully stirred right into a frenzy. See, the final time any Sungrebe was discovered on Trinidad was in 1991, and that in itself was a pair a long time after the earlier sighting.

Naturally, I needed to be on location the very subsequent morning – and fortunately the hen was precisely the place it was described to be from the earlier afternoon.


I couldn’t consider my eyes, nor may I throw any consideration to the close by Striated Heron or Wattled Jacanas that saved flitting round over the pond vegetation. Finally, she (as famous by her orange cheeks) drifted nearer to the place I had planted myself.

After an hour, the Sungrebe left the water to preen for a bit.

This Cocoi Heron flew in and barked its obvious disapproval. I photographed it, to let it know that I nonetheless thought that it was one of the stunning birds on the planet.

I noticed the Sungrebe because it methodically hunted alongside the boundary of this floating mass of vegetation till the solar rose excessive sufficient within the sky to drive it into the shade.

Birders who arrived later that day sadly didn’t get a view of the hen within the open – however the hen in the end remained comfortably in the identical pond for over every week following the unique sighting and scores of native birders crawled out of the woodwork to get a view of this unbelievable and most enigmatic creature.

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