Tuesday 28 July 2009

Gambia Trip List - part 8

Still off work, hacking away like a 90-a-day smoker, so I'm looking for vaguely productive things to do. The laundry basket is slowly getting emptied (still haven't discovered a way to automate the process, though), and I've actually written up a description of the Ortolan Bunting I found at Rainham, almost a year ago. This is very, very late indeed, and I have no excuse. But I do have a photo with which to wind you all up. Look, isn't it lovely?

Anyway, this is supposed to be about the Gambia, not gripping off London birders. Shocking behaviour. Where was I? Ah yes, the best bit! There may be rather a high density of photos for a while: we don't see many of these in the UK...

101. Broad-billed Roller - just one seen, flycatching from tall trees near the entrance to the Fajara golfcourse

102. Blue-bellied Roller - several seen, including a couple around the paddies near Kotu creek and one at Tujering. The flight shot isn't very good, but it illustrates just how stunning these birds are when they spread their wings...

103. Rufous-crowned Roller - one or two seen at Tujering.
104. Abyssinian Roller - stunning bird! Suzanne foundthe first one perched in a dead tree below our balcony in the hotel grounds, much to our delight, and others were seen at Tujering and Fajara.

105. Swallow-tailed Bee-eater - another gorgeous bird; I saw two or three at the far end of Abuko, beyond the hyena pens.

106. Little Bee-eater - fairly common, seen well at Bijilo and Brufut amongst other place. Rather confiding and photogenic!

107. White-throated Bee-eater - small numbers seen between the entrance to Bijilo and the beach.
108. Rose-ringed Parakeet - commonly heard screeching away in flight.... just like West London!
109. Senegal Parrot - a couple seen, unfortunately in flight only, at Faraba Banta
110. Violet Turaco - simply doesn't look real! Fairly easy to see at Abuko on both visits, an amazing sight in flight showing bright cerise primaries.

111. Green Turaco - scarcer, but still seen well at Abuko (in a mixed group of turacos) thanks to Ebrima's expertise.

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