Bird List                

    2016 celebrate birding 10 year anniversary
    2015 (8/14-): Curacao / HK
    2015 (Jan-8/8) log: South Carolina / Seattle
    2014 log: Jamaica / Canadian Rockies / Curacao
    2013 log (New Orleans, Costa Maya, Belize City, Roatan, & Cozumel, HK)        
    2012 (after Hurricane Sandy) log   2012 (Jul-before Hurricane Sandy) log  (Netherlands, UK, Scotland, Norway, Denmark) (birdList.b4_split2_b_and_c.htm)    2012 (Jan-Jun) log  (Costa Rica)  
    2011 log  (HK, Punta Cana
    2010 log  ( 1. Mar. Caribbean Cruise : Fort Lauderdale / Cozumel, Mexico ; 2. Nov. Caribbean Cruise : Puerto Rico / Half Moon Cay ) 
    2009 log  (Las Vegas; HK, Mainland China and Taiwan)  
    2008 log  (South Caribbean Cruise - Puerto Rico, St. Thomas, St. Kitts, Grenada, Bonaire & Aruba; Toronto; Palm Beach, Florida)   
    Photo and Video @ Punta Cana    pic01.htm  others   HK trips
    Note on Dragonfly and Damselfly   my insect spider list    Macro   butterflyMoth.htm   frog   kissena_rare_encounter.htm    Postings of NY Birding List
    Favorites in 2013   Favorites in 2012   Favorites in 2011  
    Bees   Wasps   Cricket   myInventory   myNationalPark.htm
    Costa Rica info   Costa Rica, 2012 - Photo    costa_rica_mybirdlist.htm
    Birding in Shetland Islands     Norway cruise     pc_stuff.htm    Google Voice    t-mobile (6/2014)   多部未华子   Don't vote Senator Gillibrand in 11/2018!   cull_CanadaGeese_at_JBWR.htm
    samsung_s3600.note01.htm   smart_phone.htm   Biblical_problems_caused_by_translation.htm   translation resource
    how_can_i_make_a_very_sharp_phot.htm   flash_wont_sync_in_slave_mode.htm   Camera/Camcorder for birding   cam4underwater   infrared_photography.htm  
    comet_PANSTARRS.htm    Jamaica_bird.htm   2015plus_jamaica_trips.htm   Glacier   Hay fever   Glacier & Canadian Rockies   Curacao-1   Curacao-2   Bermuda   Cancun
    South Carolina   Seattle
    Lead Adventures 3-Week Galapagos program - doc  
    Quito - Monastery of San Francisco - pic1  quito.htm
    List of whale and dolphin species        List of birds of HK
    全膝關節置換術 (TKA)

Vanessa's Delights Omega-3 Mix contains Omega-3 Fortified Cranberries, Roasted Almonds, Walnuts, Pecans, Raw Pistachios, and Pepitas (Pumpkin Seeds).   Other brands: (has retail stores in NYC)

Labor Day weekend - Rockaway Beach (1Beach 59th St.) ; Sep. - Gulls feeding on ant swarms
Summer (August) is a good time to visit Rockefeller State Park, Valhalla, NY - at the lake/pond, many dragonflies & damselflies.
Winter birding in NYC
late Feb / early March:  Ring-billed Gulls, when they have shed their streaky winter plumage and have gleaming white feathers, a bright orange orbital ring and a bright orange gape, are pretty dang-dooddilly-delightful.  src
   may be also for other gulls (e.g., Great Black-backed Gull - <1> on 2/18/2012)
Early Spring, May: look for Fragile Forktail (Ischnura posita), Eastern Forktail & other dragonflies/damselflies emerges from its nympahal skin (exuvia) to commence the aerial portion of its life   src
ebird bird account 2012 up to 5/8 
detailed map of East Pond   Mirror 
excellent information on Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge - 
Oceanside: Peregrine Falcon & Swallows fledging (late May /early June), Osprey fledging (June), dragonflies (July), Clapper Rail babies (July?)
"3/31/2013 - Queens, New York City: I visited Breezy Point today to do some spring shorebird reconnaissance and had the following notables: Piping plover (3), eastern phoebes (2), my first-of-the-season American oystercatchers (17), sanderling (240), and dunlins (3). In a first for me at Breezy Tip, I had killdeer (5) roaming around where there used to be dunes. Out on the ocean, a handful of northern gannets were seen, all adults. No massive staging of waterfowl, with only a smattering of long-tailed ducks."  - Andrew Baksh   src
QCC Nature-on-Campus BLOG : 2015 February 16 ... Pelham Bay Park (Bronx, NY) "Superb Owl" walk led by David Burg. The walk was on, you guessed it, Super Bowl Sunday. ....; 2. Great Horned Owl in tree cavity; 3. a second Great Horned Owl in the distance; 4. a Killdeer on the beach ...

Good and bad in 2015:
Good -

Bad -

Favorite photo -
11/11 - 灰喜鵲 (Azure-winged Magpie, Cyanopica cyanus = Cyanopica cyana) - HDR 
10/31 - Yellow-rumped Warbler - <1>
10/24 - Hermit Thrush - <1>   <2>  
9/29-10/6 - Venezuelan Troupial - <1>   <2> (close up) 
9/5 - Greater Yellowlegs - <1>   <2>
8/15 - Twelve-spotted Skimmer - <1>   
etc. -

History of Camera:

2002 200萬
2006 710萬
2009 1200萬
2011 1600萬 無反 (GH2)

12/27/2015 (Sun)
12/26/2015 (Sat) pm
Kissena Park

Red-tailed Hawk catches a squirrel; a yummy meal; at the end, the (adult?) hawk swallows the last big piece of the carcass.

    Red-tailed Hawk - <1>  

12/25/2015 (Fri)
Panasonic TS30 / GH2

A wonderful Christmas family day - Album (test drive of the new Panasonic TS30)

12/24/2015 (Thu) Christmas Eve, at 4:45am 61F; predict to have 70F at 3pm.  Hot!

- The forecast low in New York City (Central Park) on Christmas Eve in the low 60s would match its record high of 63 from 1996. By the afternoon, it should reach the low 70s, shattering the record by ten degrees. ...

The warmth is indirectly linked to the very strong El Nino event in which heat from abnormally warm waters in the tropical Pacific is infused into weather patterns over North America. In this case, the flow of air around high pressure centered over Bermuda is pumping deep tropical air straight up the East Coast.
The El Nino event along with sustained climate warming from greenhouse gas emissions will result in 2015 becoming the warmest on record globally by a large margin.  

12/19/2015 (Sat) am, cold like winter but sunny
Kissena (Corridor) Park

Robins, many, are still here.  Finally one Hooded Merganser.  Better late than never.  No Northern Shoveler.  Goldfinches.
Afternoon: at Emily Fong home, seeing many Juncos and Mourning Doves.
12/12/2015 (Sat) am / pm after Dim Sum, warm (60F; highest will be 64F in the afternoon)
Kissena Park & JBWR (14th visit this year) / Kissena Park

My Mallard Day.
JBWR Visiting Center opening hour in winter: Wed-Sun 10-4.
am Kissena Park: Northern Shoveler (1 pair).  Frog.
am JBWR: Hooded Merganser (1 pair).  Green-winged Teal (a few).  American Black Duck (1 pair). Coot (a lot).  Ducks and Geese in thousands.  A large flock of Starlings on power lines (or utility pole wire).  Robin (1).  Ruby-crowned Kinglet (1).  People saw Meadowhawk (dragonfly) & Buckeye in early December.
pm Kissena Park:
   (1) A male Mallard is busy to defend off other males from a female. 
   (2) A energetic small young female Mallard dives into the water many times while another small young male is watching at her.  The water is not deep so even 2 Canada Geese can reach the bottom by dabbing.  The 2 Mallards may be of first winter.  After a while, the young male decides to try.  After a couple of attempts, he did it though he cannot stay in the water as long as the female.
   (3) Northern Shoveler (1 pair) still here.
   (4) Cricket(s) still not give it up.

    Mallard - bathing, raising up in the water, and flapping its wings -  <1>   <2>  
    Green-winged Teal - <1-w640>   <1-w1024>

(1) December Possibilities? (Posted on December 1, 2015 ) - Were we spoiled by November’s unseasonably warm weather in South Jersey — with so many daily temperatures of 60+? We recorded 23 species for the month: black swallowtail, spicebush swallowtail, cabbage white, clouded sulphur, orange sulphur, cloudless sulphur, eastern tailed-blue, gray hairstreak, American copper, pearl crescent, variegated fritillary, question mark, eastern comma, mourning cloak, American lady, painted lady, common buckeye, red admiral, monarch, common checkered skipper, fiery skipper, sachem, and Ocola skipper.  ... Over our seven years of logging, 2008-2014, we have recorded fourteen species flying in December, although none has made it every year. In fact, in 2010 winter freeze set in early and we did not log a single butterfly of any species that December. ... Orange sulphur seems the most reliable late flyer — with December records for all years except 2010 and a latest-ever date of 12-31-11.  The next-most reliable species are common buckeye, red admiral, American lady, and monarch which have each appeared in five of our seven Decembers. ... 
(2) Autumn Meadowhawks (Sympetrum vicinum) are a particularly hardy species and in past years I have observed these tiny red beauties into December.  , November 23, 2015   src
(3) ... did you ever notice that a bathing Mallard always ends by sitting up in the water, flapping its wings, bending forward, and shaking its tail in the air, often dipping its bill into the water? ... Displays like this are often used to communicate with other birds.  src
(4) Mallards have a huge variety of displays that can be fascinating to watch and decipher. Most displays are ritualized versions of common motions: males may face off with a head-bob, threaten an aggressor with an open bill, or push against each other, breast to breast. Paired males defend their territories with vigorous acrobatic chases. Males court females by shaking or flicking the head side to side, looking over their shoulder, or raising up in the water and flapping their wings. Several males often gather around a female to display. A female encourages a male by nodding her head back and forth or paddling with her head held low.  src
(5) Mallard Ducks Diving For Food: ... has only in recent years observed them diving for food. Other species of ducks also seemingly adapted to a changing environment by diving for food -- such as the Spot-billed Ducks. Lack of traditional food sources may be the cause of this new feeding behavior. They may also have learned and watched from diving ducks.  Mallard ducks in the Chitose River next to the Chitose Salmon Aquarium were also seen diving for food. They appeared to be eating salmon eggs - which are not usually part of their traditional diet. Following is the relevant article: Mystery as non-diving mallard ducks start searching for food underwater.   And also the video.
(6) "I have seen [Mallard] ducklings diving completely underwater (and staying down for fifteen seconds) ..."  "I once watched four Mallard ducklings repeatedly diving straight down through four feet of clear water to scavenge a carp carcass on the bottom. Jericho Park, Vancouver Canada."
(7) Insect winter ecology - wiki
 -  the best known insect migration is that of the monarch butterfly.
 -  Hibernation as Adults. Many insects hibernate as adults. Lady bird beetles are a well-known example, and are sometimes seen in great numbers in the fall as they congregate at high elevations. Many large wasps seek shelter in the eaves and attics of houses or barns. Tree holes, leaf litter, and under logs and rocks are common shelters for overwintering adult insects. The Mourning Cloak Butterfly is usually the first butterfly that is noticed in the Spring, and this is because it hibernates in tree holes or other shelters during the winter. As in some insect larvae, it reduces the water content of its body, and builds up glycerol which acts as an antifreeze. Honey bees stay in hives during the winter, and form clusters when temperatures fall. They also are able to raise the temperature by vibrating wing muscles.
(8) Dragonfly Swarms, Wisconsin (2010) By The BugLady: It’s been a remarkable year for dragonflies in southeastern Wisconsin. They made the print and television news in early August, when green darners, appearing in huge swarms ...
Some of our green darners migrate here, ushering in the dragonfly season during the early days of spring. These migrants, nearing the end of their journey both geographically and cosmically, lay eggs in the warming waters and soon die.
Their eggs hatch into young called naiads (稚蟲 , i.e., 蜻蜓 若蟲), which spend the summer under water, preying on their fellow aquatic invertebrates (including quantities of equally aquatic mosquito larvae). The naiads emerge as adults in late summer and migrate south in fall, and their offspring will make the return journey to Wisconsin the following spring.
Another population of green darners is home-grown, and their watches are not synchronized with those of the migrants. Naiads of the resident green darners spend the winter under the ice, feeding in slow motion on small critters in the frigid water. They emerge in early summer, replacing the dying adults of the migrating population, and they lay their eggs by mid summer.
Unusually large summer dragonfly swarms were not unique to Wisconsin on 2010. The phenomenon was reported from Iowa to Vermont to Florida, and points in between, with green darners a major player in most accounts and with local experts offering a variety of explanations and assuring their audiences that dragonflies are harmless to people, pets and livestock. In general, weather gets the credit for producing huge numbers of insects. There was an early, deep, insulating snowfall here before the wetlands froze, which was favorable for the naiads and their prey. There was an early spring – it got warm and it stayed warm, favoring abundant food for growing naiads. July was hot and wet, and the rain filled low lying areas, creating impromptu, fish-free nurseries for aquatic insects. The adult dragonflies emerged a bit early, simultaneously with an explosion of dragonfly food.
So, what were all those dragonflies doing up there? An aquatic entomologist who blogs under the name of “ Dragonfly Woman ” is collecting reports of dragonfly swarms (she invites people to send their observations to her website at She writes that where last year she was getting 30 hits per week on her swarm pages, this year she is getting 500 hits. Dragonfly Woman divides swarming behavior into low-altitude, static (mostly feeding) swarms and high-altitude migratory swarms. Static swarms tend to be localized, with groups of dragonflies of several species circling or flying in figure-eights, no higher than about 20 feet off the ground. Static swarms happen in mid-summer. If you look closely, you might see their small prey just above the grass-tops. If there are lots of small static swarms, they may be part of a larger super-swarm.
Dragonfly Woman describes migratory swarms as fast-moving "rivers of hundreds of thousands of dragonflies all flying in a single direction and covering large distances." There may be several species present, but one species dominates. Only about a dozen of the 400 or so dragonfly species in North America migrate; the rest live and die near their natal wetlands. The same species that form migratory swarms are found in static swarms.
Scientists who study dragonfly migration find that dragonflies and birds are on the same page. Tiny tracking devices that were glued to the abdomens of green darners allowed the dragonflies to be tracked by air. It was discovered that like birds, dragonflies use weather fronts to initiate migration and will take advantage of a tail wind associated with a cold front (but both avoid really windy days). Both will alternate flying and resting days, and both follow visual landmarks. The cool weather in the first week of September got both the dragonflies and monarch butterflies started.
(9) So look like Green Darner adults which migrate to south in the onset of winter do not live through the winter in their wintering grounds like Monarch.  They lay eggs in the wintering ground and die.  info-1


Why do those swarming birds (starlings?) huddle so closely together on power lines even when it’s warm?

What you’re seeing is a flocking behavior called “staging,” which happens in bird migration. Flocking offers birds protection from predators, and sitting close together, or staging, does, too. While they might not be actively migrating at the time you see them, their instinctually exhibit migratory behaviors.
It is quite likely the swarming birds you’re seeing are European Starlings at this time of year. Or, they could be grackles or a mix of species, such as European Starlings, grackles, and Brown-headed Cowbirds.

(11) I saw hundreds of birds land on a telephone line and it seemed all were facing in the same direction. Is anyone aware of a reason why?
Scientists believe the main reason that birds face the same way on a wire is due to the direction of the wind. Birds have an easier time taking off and landing facing the wind.  src
12/5/2015 (Sat) am / pm after Dim Sum, sunny & warm
Kissena (Corridor) Park

am: There are many Robins.  They are still here.  Ring-necked Duck, male (1).  Cricket (heard but just one).  Finch-like birds:  probably House Finch.
pm: Ring-necked Duck still here.

    Ring-necked Duck -

11/28/2015 (Sat) am / around noontime after Dim Sum, cloudy but warm
Kissena (Corridor) Park

am: A lot of Robins are still here.  Goldfinches, many.  Kinglet.  Woodpecker.  Sparrows (White-throated, Song).  Cardinals, many.  Mockingbird.  Blue Jay, heard.  Starlings, many.  Mourning Doves, many.  Mallards, many: males are all in their most beautiful breeding plumage.  Frog (1).
Gulls (2-3).  No Hooded  Merganser [FOS record: 12/3/2011, 11/12/2012 (Mon) and 11/8/2014 (Sat) ].  No Shoveler.
noon: More Ring-billed Gulls [FOS record: 11/15/2014 (Sat)].  And crickets are still here broadcasting their love message.


11/4 (Wed) - 11/24 (Tue)

11/3 (Tue) CX 0841 9am [hk time is 10pm]
11/5 (Thu) Nam Long Shan 南朗山
11/6 (Fri) Kowloon Park - 褐翅鴉鵑
11/6 (Fri) 骨科醫生 苗延舜 - 俊匯專科醫療中心 九龍尖沙咀彌敦道26號東企業廣場26樓 預約電話:26841000
11/6 (Fri) CMS 40 of 1975 : 益新美食館 - 灣仔軒尼斯道48-62號上海實業大廈地庫 - Picasa
11/7 (Sat) Morning - 尖鼻咀 birdwatching : 集合地點:天水圍天澤商場,面對輕鐵天逸站的門口; direction: MTR 中環/香港 >南昌>元朗 > 輕鐵 761P > 天逸
11/7 (Sat) early afternoon - 元朗南生圍
11/7 (Sun) Church. Bought TV (HK$ 2990) for mom from Fortress Store.
11/8 (Mon) Meet Ruth & Dr. Chow
11/10 (Tue) Disneyland - Picasa
11/11 (Wed) 集成中心 (C C Wu Building) - 軒尼詩道302~308號 (next to 298 Computer Center) - 灰喜鵲 白頸鴉 褐翅鴉鵑
11/11 (Wed) 米埔 / 塱原濕地 (Long Valley Wetland)
11/12 (Thu) Meet Bessie Lau & Jeff Ho
11/13 (Fri) Ping Pong - starting from P1850708.JPG / 長洲 [first Fri evening after lunar calendar Oct. 2]
11/14 (Sat) 屯門公園 / 九龍寨城公園 (Kowloon Walled City Park) - fb-Hoopoe3   Hoopoe-3    Hoopoe-2    Hoopoe-1
雖然今次香港之旅只過了一半,但心感不枉此行。有很多第一次: 踏足 Disneyland, 體驗4D影音, 觀賞及拍到戴勝(Hoopoe) , 朱背啄花鳥(Scarlet-backed Flowerpecker)及其他 - fb 
11/15 (Sun)
11/16 (Mon) Visit medical doctor at Causeway Bay ($197)
11/17 (Tue) 紅咀藍鵲 (Red-billed Blue Magpie)
11/18 (Wed) 
11/19 (Thu)
11/20 (Fri)
11/21 (Sat) 香港公園 觀鳥園(Edward Youde Aviary) 紅咀相思 (Red-billed Leiothrix)
11/22 (Sun) 6pm 城景國際 樂雅軒
11/23 (Mon) Fresh Modern Kitchen, 中環荷李活道56號中發大廈地下C舖
11/24 (Tue) Nam Long Shan 南朗山

    紅咀相思 (Red-billed Leiothrix) - <1>
    爪哇禾雀 (Java sparrow) -
    长冠八哥 (Bali Myna) -
    冠鸠 -
    灰喜鵲 (Azure-winged Magpie, Cyanopica cyanus = Cyanopica cyana) - <1>   <2> (HDR)  

(1) Bus 75: The first bus from Shum Wan:
          Mon - Fri 05:10am - 06:10am - every 15 min
          Sat 05:10am - 06:40am - every 15 min
          Sun 05:10am - 07:40am - every 14~16 min
10/31/2015 (Sat) am
Kissena (Corridor) Park

Rudy-crowned Kinglets still here.  Yellow-rumped Warbler.  Junco. Goldfinches.  Flycatcher?  RWBB.  Sparrows (White-throated, Song, House).  Cricket (heard but just a few).

    Yellow-rumped Warbler - <1>   <2>   <3>  
    Goldfinch - <1>
    Rudy-crowned Kinglet -

Note about Robin:

Q. How do robins prepare for winter?

 In October they start seriously adding down feathers to improve their insulation for winter. Also, summer food supplies have diminished; there are still plenty of berries around to eat, but robins get seriously on the move in search of plentiful food supplies for the coming winter. They start seriously moving in October. Back on October 1, 1988, birdwatchers counted over 60,000 robins migrating over Duluth in northern Minnesota, so that's serious migration. But in fall and winter, robins don't stay in a single spot for long — they wander about searching for new sources of still-fresh fruits. 

Q. Why do robins molt just before they are about to migrate south?

They molt so they will have fresh feathers for their flight. These fresh feathers will also be very good for insulating them from the winter cold. Robins start molting their flight feathers in mid-June, and have finished molting them by early September. They molt their body feathers from late July into October. One by one, each feather is pushed out by a new one. Most feathers last for a whole year. If a feather gets pulled out when the robin isn't molting, that feather gets replaced fairly quickly.


10/24/2015 (Sat) 10:30-12:30, cloudy
Kissena (Corridor) Park

Rudy-crowned Kinglet (1).  Goldfinch (2+).  Pheasant (3 M + 1 F).  Flycatcher, probably Phoebe.  Hawk, not Kestrel nor Red-tailed; look like male Northern Harrier or Accipiter (Sharp-shinned or Cooper's Hawk).  Hermit Thrush.  Female RWBB.  Sparrows (White-throated, Song, House).  Wasp (1).  Cricket (many).

    Hermit Thrush - <1>   <2> 
    Color of Fall (c.f. 11/15/2014)

10/17/2015 (Sat) am, sunny but cold like winter
Kissena Park

Rudy-crowned Kinglet still there. 
10/12/2015 (Mon) afternoon after lunch, sunny
Kissena Park

Rudy-crowned Kinglet.  Yellow-rumped Warbler?  Unknown Warbler.

    Rudy-crowned Kinglet -
    Yellow-rumped Warbler / Unknown Warbler -

10/10/2015 (Sat) afternoon, sunny
Westchester - 墓園墳場

Clipping Sparrow (a flock).  Blue Jay.  Mockingbird. 
9/29/2015 - 10/6/2015
Curacao, Netherlands Antilles - note

Marriott Beach Resort house reef:
    incirrate octopus.
Shete Boka National Park:
    Boka Pistol - <1a>   <1b>

Willemstad downtown:

Sea Aquarium:

Playa Lagun:

    Venezuelan Troupial - <1>   <2> (close up)
    Trupial Kacho, a Yellow Oriole - <1>
    Black-faced Grassquit (Tiaris bicolor sharpei) [info-1] - <1> (female or juvenile)
    hermit crab - <1>
    baby Iguana

 (1) incirrate octopus species are found in reefs and other shallower seafloor habitats.  wiki
 (2) [added on 8/2016] we did not go to Kleine Knip (Knip Beach / Playa Chichi) - clearest bluest waters in the world (clear, warm and calm waters)
This is one of the larger/largest beaches (200-300 m) and it is very popular with locals on weekends to the point where parking was very difficult and spilling out onto the road....very busy. Note that while this beach is called Kleine Knip on this TripAdvisor posting and Knip on the map, the large busy beach people are reviewing is called Knip Playa Abou on the road signs (not to be confused with Cas Abou which is considerably further south of here). And on the road in, there is an earlier turnoff to a separate smaller uncrowded beach where there is good snorkeling along the rocks on both sides; this beach is listed as Klein Knip on local map but referred to as Playa Chichi on road signs.  tripadvisor

9/27/2015 (Sun)  Super Moon Eclipse

9/26/2015 (Sat) morning, sunny

Big John's:  Northern Flicker (2). 
East Pond:  Peregrine Falcon.  Belted Kingfisher, male.  Damselfly.
West: Black-crowned Night Heron (many).  Osprey.  Great Blue Heron.  Boat-tailed (or Common?) Grackle on the treetop calling.

    Peregrine Falcon -

9/19/2015 (Sat) morning / afternoon after Dim Sum, sunny
JBWR / Kissena Park

Big John's:  Cardinal.  Brown Thrasher (3).  Common Yellowthroat.  Yellow-rumped Warbler.  Catbird.  Mourning Dove.  Waterthrush. 
East Pond:  Swan, a lot.   Glimpse one Katydid (bush cricket)
West: see a small bird with a special call; probably NOT Red-eyed Vireo?  heard Towhee.
Damselfly, many. 
Kissena: no hummingbird.

    Cricket (inside Men's Room) -
    Waterthrush -

  Find out I can park my car inside Floyd Bennett Field & get 1-day permit for free to Breezy Point.
9/16/2015 (Wed) pm, sunny (80+°C)
Kissena Corridor Park / Kissena Park

Hummingbirds.  Waterthrush.  Pheasant.  Frog Tadpoles (3), with body length of almost 1/2 inch.
Wasps (many species).  Flower Fly (black, a bee mimic).  Grasshopper.   Skipper (a small one and it seems new to me) and other butterflies.  Female Amberwing.  Cicadas heard.

    Amberwing, female
    Amberwing, male
    Skipper -  <1>
    Flower Fly -  <1>   <2>   <3>   <4>

(1) Bullfrog Tadpoles -
Bullfrog tadpoles, known scientifically as 
Rane Catesbeiana, are native to eastern North America and can be found as far north as Canada and as far south as Florida. 
Tadpoles are as easy to spot as their much larger parents. While much larger than tadpoles of other frog species (they range up to a sizable 15 centimeters in length), they tend to sport the very same coloration of their parents – skin that is very dark green, almost black to the human eye. 
The Bullfrog tadpole’s appearance is distinct and one of the reasons why it is easy to spot (its color is another reason). The tadpole has an arrowhead-shaped body with a dorsal fin that actually begins behind its body. And while it is small in size compared to adult Bullfrogs, the Bullfrog tadpole is actually quite large compared to adult frogs of other species.
Additionally, Bullfrog tadpoles mature much more slowly than tadpoles of other species. While the tadpoles of competing species may complete metamorphosis in as little as just a few short months, Bullfrog tadpoles can remain in the same state for as long as one to two years before they actually become adult frogs.   src

(2) Bullfrogs in supermarket in Shanghai
(3) Tadpoles - images of Northern Green Frog (Rana clamitans), American Bullfrog (Rana catesbeiana) & other frogs.

(11) Bee Mimics:
 Flies are one of the most common bee mimics in Illinois, and often very well disguised. Even so, there are two simple ways to tell a fly mimic from a bee. First, look at the wings: bees have four wings, but flies have two wings. Second, look at the antennae: bees have elbowed antennae, while many flies have short, stubby, or hair-thin antennae. If you can't see the antennae, you're probably looking at a fly.
 Drone flies, or hover flies, look and sound very similar to bees. When flying, their wings and antennae can be very difficult to observe - but their behavior will be very different from a bee. These flies hover and move erratically; bees generally move slowly from flower to flower, and do not hover in one place.

(12) Mimicry in hoverflies (Diptera: Syrphidae): a field test of the competitive mimicry hypothesis -
Although most studies on the evolution of mimicry and warning coloration in insects have considered predators as the major selective force, it is possible that competition for food resources could also facilitate selection for these conspicuous signals. For example, when warningly colored social wasps visit flowers, then they frequently behave aggressively toward heterospecifics, and they also attack and feed on other flying insects. Under these conditions, a resemblance to a wasp might provide a mimetic hoverfly with improved access to floral resources by reducing the frequency with which it is disturbed by other pollinators. We experimentally evaluated whether wasp-like colors and patterns were important in preventing other flower visitors from sharing the same flower resource, using pairwise presentations of both natural and artificial prey in the field. Flower visitors were more likely to visit unoccupied flowers compared with the flowers pinned with either natural or artificial specimens in 2 plant species with different inflorescences. However, flower visitors did not show a significantly reduced rate of visitation to flowers pinned with specimens bearing wasp-like colors and patterns compared with the flowers occupied by similar-sized specimens that were nonmimetic. Overall, we found no compelling evidence in this study to support the contention that wasp-like warning signals of hoverflies prevent other flower visitors from sharing flower resources, although insects showed a greater tendency to avoid visiting flowers pinned with a wasp compared with flowers pinned with a nonmimetic fly.

(13) Picture found on Web: Wasp mimicking hoverfly (Conopidae)
(14) Wasp-mimicking flyPhysocephala tibialis : mimicking the constricted waist that is supposedly one of the diagnostic characters of Hymenoptera (wasp-waist).
(15) Two kinds of bee mimics -
    a. syrphid/flower/hover fly:  they eat nectar and/or pollen; pollinators; they do not bite or sting, although they may land on you because they like the taste of your sweat. Some people mistakenly call these little flies "Sweat bees", which is actually a family of bees (Halictidae). *Remember: flower fly is not sweat bee.
    Bombyliid flies too.  They have exceptionally long proboscises, which they use for probing flowers for nectar. They are fairly adorable, as far as flies go; essentially they are little round fuzzy balls. Maybe, just maybe, they are my favorite representative of that sometimes despicable (read: mosquitoes) order of Diptera.  More on wiki.
    b. mimics bees for a different purpose: to eat them! By perfectly imitating a bee, a predator can sneak up on a bee. The Asilid (Robber flies) family of flies is one example.
    Another example - Ornate Sniper Fly (Chrysopilus ornatus)?  Does this species in particular specialize on bees?
        This species of the family Rhagionidae is found over most of the northeastern U.S. and adjacent southern Canada.

Plumage abnormalities
There are several different forms of plumage abnormality centred on altered amounts of pigment. These include leucism and albinism (where there is loss of the pigment melanin), melanism (in which the amount and/or distribution of dark-coloured melanin pigment is often elevated), erythrism (where a chestnut-red pigment replaces certain other pigments) and flavism (where there is an excess of yellow pigment). Both erythrism and flavism are thought to be rare compared with leucism and melanism.
暗綠繡眼鳥 --- ( 白化 )

9/5/2015 (Sat) 11am-1pm, sunny (80°C)
JBWR East Pond

Greater Yellowlegs (1), run frantically to chase small fish.  Semipalmated Sandpiper (gray body & blackish legs).  Least Sandpiper (brown body & greenish or yellowish legs).  Semipalmated Plover.  Peregrine Falcon.  Damselflies and Dragonflies. 

    Greater Yellowlegs - <1>   <2>  
    Semipalmated Sandpiper -
    Least Sandpiper -
    Id - 2 Semipalmated & 1 Least 
    Semipalmated Plover -
    Twelve-spotted Skimmer (female or immature male) - 
    Damselfly (Bluet?) mating -
    Cormorants in flight -
    Ducks in flight -

(1) Peregrine Falcons: Too Much of a Comeback? (August 2010) -
    Now [i.e., 2010], according to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, which still lists peregrines as endangered in New York State, New York City “has probably the largest urban population of peregrine falcons anywhere, and peregrines nest on every Hudson River bridge south of Albany.”
    Of course, Peregrine Falcons are awesome birds and it is certainly better that they exist and persist in the eastern United States then the alternative, but I have to wonder what the presence of year-round Peregrine Falcons is doing to the populations of shorebirds, puddle ducks, and other species that make their way through New York City on migration each year.  A recent visit to Jamaica Bay’s East Pond gave me an inkling.  ...
    As the tide came in and filled the Jamaica Bay basin more and more shorebirds came in to roost at the East Pond, as they do at every high tide.  Roosting conserves energy when the birds can’t actively feed, and helps them to fatten up for the next stage of their long migration. It also gives birders like a me a chance to search through the flocks hoping to find rarities.  But the shorebirds get no rest and the birders get no chance to sift through the thousands of birds when a Peregrine Falcon is hunting in the area.
(2) Least Sandpiper   mirror  | Semipalmated Sandpiper   mirror

8/29/2015 (Sat) afternoon after Dim Sum, sunny & hot
Kissena Park

Black-and-white Warbler.  Wasps, one looks like Cicada Killer.  Blue Dasher.  As usual, many Damselflies and Eastern Amberwings.

    Black-and-white Warbler
    Blue Dasher

8/23/2015 (Sun)
青仁黑豆, 羅漢果半個(連殼), 陳皮 煮水兩小時.

羅漢果: Info-1   Info-2   Info-3   Info-4   Info-5  


  生吞黑豆的功效主要在取其排氣功能,提高新陳代謝,改善部份皮膚病。但中藥書提到黑豆應熟食,不宜生食及炒食,因為生的黑豆含有影響蛋白質吸收的胰蛋白酵素抑制劑、抑制生長的血球凝集素以及降低碘吸收的甲狀腺腫素,這些物質經烹煮後皆可破壞,才不會對身體有不良影響。此外黑豆不適於空腹時食用,硬的黑豆含高纖維不易消化,空腹會過度刺激胃壁,胃病變者易導致疼痛、腸阻塞、腹瀉等不適的症狀。所以年紀大及身體虛弱者不宜食用。  src

8/22/2015 (Sat) afternoon after Dim Sum, sunny & hot
Kissena Park

Redstart.  House Sparrow, juvenile molting to adult male plumage.
Blue Dasher mating and ovipositing.  As usual, many Damselflies and Eastern Amberwings.

Tide time site (should go when 2 hr before high tide; cf. birdList2010.htm)

8/15/2015 (Sat) afternoon after Dim Sum, sunny & hot
Kissena Park

Brown-headed Cowbird, juvenile, somewhat tame. 
Common Whitetail.  Twelve-spotted Skimmer.  Blue Dasher.  Damselfly (Bluet? Forktail?).

    Cowbird -
    Common Whitetail -
    Twelve-spotted Skimmer - <1>
    Damselfly -

Somebody blog

8/14/2015 (Fri)
Unknown mammal - escaped illegal pet @ Jamaica Bay East Pond Trail -
   See more at:

"Yesterday I found this mammal resting at the top of trees to the left of the blind at Big John's Pond. It seems to be a an escaped or released illegal pet." - See more at:
Just got off the phone with FWS law enforcement. Since kinkajous are not a protected species, and are commonly bred in the US it was most likely not smuggled in. She agrees that it most likely became too much for someone and they just dumped it. - See more at: