Sunday, July 24, 2011

All Set For Malaysia

So, my preparation for Malaysia has been done. The 25 possible woodpecker species studied and revised. Very much looking forward to seeing the likes of Great Slaty and White-bellied Woodpeckers again and new ones like Bamboo Woodpecker. I hope to get on-line there and put up a few notes and photos, maybe even sound recordings.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Leech Socks

Am I going to need these things ? Do they work ? I have always prided myself on being fairly insect-parasite-proof. But it seems that these south-east Asian leeches can be determined. Still, if I have to donate some blood to get my woodpeckers then so be it.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Malaysia trip preparation

Malaysia next week and my preparations are well in-hand. On the woodpecker front (25 species there and they are what my trip is about) I have my iPod loaded with calls and drums and photos for reference, photocopies of key pages from picid literature, maps and GPS coords saved, local guide contacted, car hired, rooms booked... only thing I don't have is leech socks! Though I think it is dry there now and the leeches might not be about too much.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Book Signing

Well my new book is at the printers, not out yet, but I already have the times of my book signings at the Lynx Edicions stand (Marquee1, Stands27 & 38) at the British Birdwatching Fair at Rutland Water, UK. August 20th Saturday afternoon from 14:00 to 14:30 and August 21st Sunday morning from 10:30 to 11:00.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Helmeted Woodpecker... donations needed !

You see this great bird here in the photo ? Well, you'd like to see it right ? Well, read this request:

Donations needed for Helmeted Woodpecker conservation
Although rare and declining, the Helmeted Woodpecker can still be saved if the old forests that it prefers are conserved and if forest conditions for it are improved in logged forests. To find out the ecological needs of the Helmeted Woodpecker and to implement habitat restoration for it and associated old-forest species, a five year conservation project is now being launched by Martjan Lammertink. It is a joint project by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, the National Research Council of Argentina (CONICET), and the Paraná Pine Project, a local NGO in Misiones province, Argentina. The project needs funds to cover radio tracking equipment and field expenses and to pay field assistants and Argentinean students. Fundraising from foundations for a little known Neotropical woodpecker is hard, and Martjan would very much appreciate donations from readers of this blog for the project. For more information please contact Martjan at

So, can you help ? It is a VERY good cause. This great photo of this great woodpecker was taken by Martjan and more like it can be seen on PicidPics.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Black Woodpecker book coming soon!

So, finally, the maps are done, the galleys have been checked and the manuscript is at the printing house. My monograph The Black Woodpecker will be out at the end of this month! ISBN-13: 978-84-96553-79-8. For a preview check out the "Look Inside" on the Lynx website: Black Woodpecker monograph

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Back to the birds...

Ok, after a few butterflies and herps... back to the birds. Here is a female Red-backed Shrike I snapped at Aggtelek in Hungary when the others were on their knees looking at some tiny butterflies. It's a fairly common bird hereabouts, often at roadsides.