Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Comet Lulin


Last night Comet Lulin was at its closest approach to Earth (only 38,000,000 miles) so I drove out to the observatory near Comber and attached my camera to a AT111 refractor telescope. The greenish colour and long tail were easily captured with a one minute exposure.




Monday, February 23, 2009

Ecuador

Here are a few images from my birding trip to northern Ecuador, February 6-19.  I was a co-leader for a birding tour provided by Tom Hince. See Tom's blog for a day-by-day account of the trip.

White-capped Tanager along the road above the lodge at San Isidro

Hummingbird feeders are everywhere in Ecuador and many species can be observed at close range. I had birds perch on my camera and watched hummers inspect any patch of red coloured clothing, even painted  fingernails.  

video

Buff-tailed Coronet video.  This is a very common hummingbird on the west slope at places such as Bellavista and Tony Nunnery's. 




Booted Racketails are another common hummingbird on the west slope of the Andes  (and one of my favourite hummers).  The Viridian Metaltail was photographed at Termas de Papallacta, high in the mountains.  See my Homepage for more hummingbird images from Ecuador.


One night at Septimo Paraiso we were invited to go along with Mike Knoerr who was conducting an amphibian and reptile survey of the property.  Here are a couple of the frogs and a forest anole found on the walk.





A night time visit to any of the lights around a lodge would reveal hundreds of spectacular moths, beetles and other insects. These insects in turn attracted a lot birds each morning!