A second days birdwatching in Hong Kong started early.  The meeting point for the ferry to Po Toi Island was at Aberdeen on the opposite side of the Hong Kong Island from my hotel - I had worked out the bus No. and approximate meeting place from the HKBWS website, but as everything here is so hectic I wanted to leave some spare time to find the meeting point.  My strategy was to get to the Aberdeen harbour and simply walk up and down looking for a group of people sporting binoculars and cameras - my strategy soon paid off and I had introduced myself to Benny (a local), James (from Sydney and working in HK) and a French chap whose name escapes me.  Introductions made, we boarded the ferry along with another dozen or so others and made for Po Toi. The target species were migrants that use Po Toi Island as a stopover for refuelling.  We spent the day looking for these species with some success however it was extremely hot and the days list was somewhat shorter than I had hoped;  that said some good views of new birds were had and new friendships made.  As well as the birds there were numerous butterflies and some scary spiders (inch long bodies).  Photo opportunities were few with the small birds well within the foliage but I did manage some reasonable shots.  I sometimes think that my camera with my 'big' lens looks out of place however today it looked like a 'point and shoot' along with all the 500mm+ lenses that were present - those guys had some serious kit and were taking some amazing pictures. The ferry back was at four o'clock which coincided with the temperatures dropping.  Frustratingly, as we were leaving this drop in temperature lead to many more birds beginning to show themselves; I could have stayed on my own and waited for the last ferry at 6pm but another 2 hours in the heat would have been too much.  Perhaps if I have another HK visit, I can plan a trip to Po Toi later in the day. One highlight was a close sighting of a Common Kingfisher fishing - two sightings in as many days - not bad for an industrial wasteland! PS.  I have had some Chinese beer but not that much - Black Faced Spoonbill is real, however even if I had managed access to the hide, I was told on good authority today that they only winter in HK and are not back yet.

One Response to “Hong Kong Birdwatching 2”

  1. Ian September 19, 2010 at 5:52 pm

    Brilliant stuff Neil, I am quite certain that the second butterfly is a Monarch, a well know migratory species. I took a similar picture with my state of the art lens (then 1982) a Sigma 600mm mirror lens outside my bedroom window in Dubai. Yours is better. Technology is wonderful and you are right where it happens, if you can’t buy it or have it made in Hong Kong I suggest it doesn’t exist.

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