OBC members should already have received Forktail 30, the latest issue of the Club’s peer-reviewed journal of Asian ornithology.
As ever, the publcation is packed with the latest ornithological papers relating to the avifauna of the Oriental region.
The full contents from each issue are posted on the OBC website, but it’s a publication you simply can’t afford to miss: so join OBC today and you will receive two issues of BirdingASIA every year, plus once a year, Forktail, the Club’s peer-reviewed journal publishing original ornithological research from the region.
Taxonomic enigma: Pink-tailed Bunting. (c) Richard Thomas
In 2016, there will be an exciting opportunity for OBC members to visit the Koko Nor, deserts, Roof of the World & SE Qinghai on an OBC on a trip led by Jesper Hornskov.
By Jesper Hornskov* ALL RIGHTS RESERVED 1st October 2014.
Situated in western China, rugged Qinghai province is the ideal place to see a mix of Central Asian specialities, Chinese / Tibetan endemics, and isolated populations of otherwise mostly Siberian species. In zoogeographic terms we will be visiting the Tibetan Plateau and the deep valleys of its eastern fringes, with the latter showing particularly strong affinities with the least accessible parts of neighbouring Sichuan, known for its avifaunally rich Panda reserves.
Unlike China’s ‘Tibet Autonomous Region’ (which could remain trapped in the current unrest- and-clampdown cycle for years to come, making both Lhasa & SE Tibet chronically uncertain destinations), Qinghai – with scenery fully on par with the very best in parts of ‘geographical Tibet’ now administered by neighbouring provinces – offers excellent, reliable & (with comparatively less developed tourism) affordable access to Tibet’s array of unique birds, mammals & flora.
Full itinerary and more details (PDF, 350 KB)
The Jewel Hunter, Chris Goodie’s gripping tale of his quest to see every species of true pitta inside a single calendar year is now available direct from Chris, with £4 from every sale going straight to the Oriental Bird Club.
To find out more about this exciting opportunity to read about one of the world’s great birding tales, please visit the OBC publications sales page.
The Club’s Annual General Meeting this year is being held jointly with the British Ornithologists’ Club & Natural History Museum on Saturday 22nd November 2014 at The Flett Theatre, Natural History Museum, Cromwell Road, London SW7 5BD.
A packed agenda includes talks by Dr Pamela Rasmussen on new species and rediscoveries, Dr Debbie Pain on saving the Spoon-billed Sandpiper, Chris Gooddie on Bukit Barisan Selatan, Dr Stuart Marsden on Asia’s large frugivorous birds, Dr Robert Prŷs-Jones on Allan Octavian Hume and Warblers and Dr Per Alstrom on warblers and larks.
The meeting is open to members and non-members of OBC and BOC. Admission is free to members, donations from non-members invited.
Full programme and details of how to reach the venue in the Joint Meeting Programme (PDF, 150 KB).
Giant Ibis (c) James Eaton / BirdtourAsia
An assessment by scientists from the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) and Yale University of bird species worldwide has helped produce a list of the top 100 most Evolutionarily Distinct and Globally Endangered (Edge) species.
Top of the list is the rare and striking Giant Ibis, which today can most easily be found in northern Cambodia. Approximately 230 pairs remain in the wild, many of them protected by local campaigns run through the Sam Veasna Centre and BirdLife Cambodia. Chief threats to the ibis are habitat loss, human disturbance and hunting.
A new short two minute video, based upon the conservation work by Sayam Chowdhury through Spoon-billed Sandpiper Conservation Project (BSCP) in Bangladesh has been launched and can be seen here:
You can also read Birdgirl Mya-Rose Craig’s blog about her visit to the project.
The Spotted Elachura Elachura formosa, newly elevated to single-family status. (c) James Eaton / BirdtourASIA
DNA molecular analysis has revealed that the Spotted Wren-babbler is a unique species, unrelated to wren-babblers and is best placed in its own family, the Elachuridae.
Henceforth the species will be called the Spotted Elachura Elachura formosa.
The discovery, by Professor Per Alström and co-workers, is published in the Royal Society journal Biology Letters.
Molecular analysis of passerine families identified 10 separate evolutionary branches, one of which was unique to the Spotted Elachura, the only living representative of one of the earliest off-shoots within the passeriformes
The Spotted Elachura is extremely secretive and difficult to observe, usually staying hidden within dense tangled undergrowth in subtropical mountain forests.
The male’s high-pitched song doesn’t resemble any other continental Asian bird song. The close resemblance in appearance to wren-babbler species is thought due either to pure chance or convergent evolution.
Cover photo: Spangled Drongo Dicrurus hottentottus, Mahananda Wildlife Sanctuary, West Bengal, January 2013 by Arabinda Debnath
OBC members should already have received BirdingASIA 20, the latest issue of the Club’s biannual publication, BirdingASIA.
As ever, the issue is packed with the latest information and ornithological sightings from the Oriental region. It includes articles on identifcation of ‘Black-eared’ and ‘Pariah’ Kites, right, and ringing sparrowhawks on migration,a whole suite of taxonomic changes to the region’s avifauna, right through to some stunning photo essays and an artilcle about the poorly-known Wood Snipe in Bhutan.
The full contents and sample articles from each issue are posted here on the OBC website, but it’s a publication you simply can’t afford to miss: so join OBC today and you will receive two issues of BirdingASIA every year, plus once a year, Forktail, the Club’s peer-reviewed journal publishing original ornithological research from the region.