A trip to Yim Tin Tsai

The problem with visiting the island of YTT is that the first boat does not leave until 10am. Useless for decent photography. Be that as it may, I went over this morning with a view to checking out the deserted salt pans for dragonflies. There were no more than 8 or 9 of us on the boat. The trip costs a miserly HK$35 return for the 15 minute chug over. So pretty good value….. apart from the late start.

It was certainly warmer than I had expected but I had bottled water with me and I bought some wonderful chrysanthemum tea from the small kiosk. That is a real pick-me-up. What struck me first was the call of the Indian cuckoo. “One more bottle” it shouts, over and over again. I also heard Large hawk cuckoo. I do have a recording of the IC but I have not found a way of transferring it from my iPhone to the blog. I heard at least 3 birds and saw one flying across to Kau Sai Chau. They seemed to be no more than 50m away at times but I could not see one perched.

There were no dragonflies to interest me but there were a lot of small crabs around, some less skittish than others.

A mean looking critter!

The stare down

I was also delighted to photograph two different species of cicada. I saw (again) the elusive Red-nosed cicada but couldn’t get a lens on it.

This little chap is the Green clearwing cicada. I saw several but this was the only frame I managed as they were too quick to fly if I approached with the tripod. They immediately went into the canopy. This then was hand held and it shows, I’m afraid. But ho gwor mo as the locals say, better than nowt.

Chremistica ochracea

This one posed a different problem. Happy to sit and pose but with bright light behind, I was left to have the cicada decently exposed and the background overpowering. Some delicate processing was needed and that is not my forte.  Afterthought, should have used fill flash 😦

Platypeura hilpa

And no walk is complete without a couple of flutter-bys.

Artipe eryx

Actyolepis puspa gisca

I went out on a limb with the second and diagnosed it as a wet season female. I hope I’m right.

And just to prove beetles can be beautiful too (well, not bad anyway) here’s a clicker:

Campsosternus auratus

The reason it is not 100% sharp is because it was moving, the little tinker, and I should have pushed the ISO higher. Its vernacular name is not very creative. Large Green Click Beetle. Accurate but boring.

Finally the day’s award for best camouflage goes to…………. drumroll…………. well, can you tell me?

Camouflage of the Day winner

What I do find odd is that many people walk past most if not all of these goodies. Why would you venture out into the summer air on a beautiful small island and then ignore everything around you? Well, one reason might be because each time you stop the mozzies decide to indulge in a little pre-prandial aperitif. But I cover up as best I can and its cheaper than a trip to the sauna and you don’t have to beat yourself with twigs unless you want to. Reassuringly however there were some young people out today, cameras in hand, active bug-photographers and bird seekers – more power to their flower.

As the world seems about to implode in economic terms, who knows, we may soon be living ‘nature’s way’ again soon. I tried to check my pension fund on Friday but the microscope wasn’t powerful enough. I think I need a job.

Have a good weekend, all.

6 thoughts on “A trip to Yim Tin Tsai

  1. I would suggest emailing the bird call recording to yourself, then downloading it onto your computer from the email. Then create a video in Windows Movie Maker or any other free editing program with a photo of the bird as the video portion and importing the bird call as the audio. Upload it to YouTube and share it from there.

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