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Monday, 13 May 2013

KB road in spring

I had planned to spend some of the morning hours at KB road on my Friday off. As it happened it was pouring down when I got up and I needed very little persuasion to return my head back to my pillow. Luckily, the weather promised to be much better the next day and at Saturday 6 AM I turned onto KB road in a highly upbeat mood.

Some bushes next to the road were fruiting and there were plenty of bulbuls around, mostly black-headed, but I also saw a puff-backed bulbul which is an uncommon encounter at KB road. After a couple of minutes the star of the morning flew in: a male black-and-white bulbul.
Male black-and-white bulbul (Pycnonotus melanoleucus).
This first picture is really not very good. I was shooting against the light with a slightly fogged up lens. And not only that, I also still had my camera in a fixed setting from the previous night! Not very smart. It's hard to explain the anguish when failing to make the most of a perfect photo opportunity of a hard to get bird.

While waiting for the black-and-white bulbul to return, I heard a scarlet-rumped trogon singing and soon found the source.
Scarlet-rumped trogon (Harpactes duvaucelii).
I don't think I will ever tire of seeing a trogon, they really are stunning animals. There were also several black-winged flycatcher-shrikes around. This is one of the more common birds along KB road.
Black-winged flycatcher-shrike (Hemipus hirundinaceus).
Black-winged flycatcher-shrike (Hemipus hirundinaceus).
Two black magpies were making a lot of noise nearby. This is only the second time I have seen this species now on KB road.
Bornean black magpie (Platysmurus aterrimus).
This pygmy squirrel also showed quite well. These tiny squirrels do not measure more than 10 cm. I think this is the plain or least pygmy squirrel, and a from a little googling I just learned that this species is endemic to Borneo.
Least pygmy squirrel (Exilisciurus exilis).
After a while another black-and-white bulbul showed up, a female this time. This species really seems to have a cunning ability to make any photographing attempts difficult. In this one the head is superbly hidden behind a leave...
Female black-and-white bulbul (Pycnonotus melanoleucus).
The browner color suggest that this is a female. And here she is flying of again....
Female black-and-white bulbul (Pycnonotus melanoleucus).
The black-and-white bulbul is uncommon species. KB road seems to be a relatively good area for an encounter with this distinctive bulbul and I have seen them now on several occasions. This Saturday I was lucky to not only see a male and female bird, but also this juvenile.
Juvenile black-and-white bulbul (Pycnonotus melanoleucus).
 Finally the female showed up again and allowed some better shots.

And just in time as I really couldn't stay any longer; the jazz festival in Miri was waiting, which btw was very excellent!

Folkert, 13/05/2013.


  1. The Black and White Bulbul makes me drool, I will upload some of the pictures here to BBI, thanks in advance.

  2. :-)

    KB road seems a good place for the BW bulbul, especially when there some fruiting going on.