Foreign softbills

  • Gary Bralsford: March bulletin

    Gary Bralsford: March bulletin

    19th March 2018

    Photo: Gary’s friend Colin has had pairs of white-collared kingfishers and brown-hooded kingfishers (example pictured) produce clutches already this year © Potter11 GARY BRALSFORD looks forward to the spring unfolding, with news of his own ongoing breeding preparations, developments in…

  • Amazilia: quintessential hummers

    Amazilia: quintessential hummers

    5th March 2018

    Photo: Weltvogelpark Walsrode. Weltvogelpark Walsrode in Germany has repeatedly produced chicks from its Amazilia hummingbirds. The park celebrated its 50th birthday in 2012 with a new hummingbird breeding centre  In most of their wild range, hummingbirds of the expansive genus Amazilia…

  • Gail Harland’s waterbirds: the scarlet ibis

    Gail Harland’s waterbirds: the scarlet ibis

    26th February 2018

    © Mecnarowski. A scarlet ibis roost in mangrove trees near Caroni Swamp in Trinidad. Such gatherings are among the world’s most memorable bird spectacles  AT COLCHESTER Zoo in Essex, I once heard a mother confidently telling her son that the scarlet…

  • Feather by feather

    Feather by feather

    19th February 2018

    Photo: © Byland Myriad shades of red feature in JARROD COTTER’s examination of the northern cardinal’s gorgeous plumage. THE northern cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis) is a mid-sized songbird with a body length of about 20-23cm (8-9in) and a wingspan of 25-30cm…

  • Softbills: Roller karaoke

    Softbills: Roller karaoke

    12th February 2018

    Photo: Gary Bralsford. Gary’s montane and African yellow white-eyes in their winter quarters This month, GARY BRALSFORD hits the ground running as he prepares his birds for the breeding season by employing an interesting tactic that involves playing wild bird calls……

  • Thrushes Bulletin by Austin Middlemiss

    Thrushes Bulletin by Austin Middlemiss

    5th February 2018

    Above: Winning exhibits at the 2015 Morpeth CBS open show. Austin nearly didn’t make it to last year’s after some softbill cages he’d ordered took longer to arrive than expected WELL I managed to get a show team out at the…

  • Feather by feather: the snow bunting

    Feather by feather: the snow bunting

    29th January 2018

    Photo: © Granchinho In this month’s column, it’s time for Jarrod Cotter to study the Arctic specialist known as the snow bunting, which is the most northerly recorded passerine in the world. SNOW buntings (Plectrophenax nivalis) are large for a bird…

  • Pretty in pink: the carmine bee-eater

    Pretty in pink: the carmine bee-eater

    29th January 2018

    Photo: © Scharf. The northern carmine bee-eater (Merops nubicus) is easily distinguished by its dark throat from its sister species, Merops nubicoides, which boasts a shocking pink throat  Even among the myriad dazzling species of Africa, this bee-eater stands out with…

  • Dutch softbill spectacular

    Dutch softbill spectacular

    18th December 2017

    Photo: Rick van Groningen. Elaborately decorated showcases and aviaries are the order of the day at the Bird Experience Oirschot in Holland  Each year, the Bird Experience Oirschot in Holland puts on an extraordinary event that showcases its members’ softbills in…

  • Sword-billed hummingbird: the beak that’s longer than the body

    Sword-billed hummingbird: the beak that’s longer than the body

    13th December 2017

    Photo: © Chancasana. Giant hummingbird: on a quick view, this bird can be mistaken for a swallow! Here is a bird that has to be seen to be believed, says BILL NAYLOR, so why have zoos stopped keeping the sword-billed hummingbird…