An encounter with a Siberian Blue Robin

Adrian Lim a.k.a. wmw998 describes his encounter with a juvenile male Siberian Blue Robin taking a bath on 15th December 2008 in Malaysia (above):

“This is an unusual way of shooting this bird, at least for me. Based on friend’s information, me and Alagan travelled all the way to Pahang jungle. Knowing that the bird would only be out to shower between 5pm to 7 pm, we trekked up the dark mountain stream, settled ourselves in the middle of the stream at 4.45 pm, with a bit of camouflage materials around the cameras. It was a little dark in the deep jungle. At the back of my head, there was always this story told to us by the local a week earlier, that a tiger and two cubs had been sighted nearby lately.

“First, we spotted some birds taking shower at the lower stream, and discovered that they were Black-naped Monarchs. And then at about 5.45pm, the juvenile Siberian Robin suddenly turned up at the side of the stream. The bird stayed still, observed for a while, and slowly came down to the stream for a dip.

“Both of us started firing, and strange enough, the bird just continued showering, oblivious to our presence. A short while later, it went up to the bush area to dry itself, then back for second shower. I got so excited that I fell and sat on the water, almost pulling the camera and tripod down with me. That frightened the bird off.

“Somehow, it didn’t give up and came down for a third dip, that was good enough for us to take some reasonably good shots… We waited till 7 pm…

“In retrospect, it was not a good idea to stay that late in the jungle, we were pushing our luck a little, but I did pay a leech some blood for the shots!

“Believe it or not, we are going back to wait for the birds again this weekend. Who wants to join us?”

The Siberian Blue Robin is a common winter visitor and passage migrant to Singapore and Malaysia.

Images by Adrian Lim.

This post is a cooperative effort between and BESG to bring the study of bird behaviour through photography to a wider audience.

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