All beautiful creatures to me & Typhoon before weekend trip

I came to work early today to check out if the nestlings are ready to fly or not. (By the end of today, the nestlings still had not left the nest yet - meaning overtime work for my co-workers who have to come in during the weekend to try and capture the fledgling barbets.)

Almost, but not yet.

Father Barbet waiting for his break once this clutch is over.

While preparing to go to the botanical garden in the morning to check on the status of the rat traps, a research assistant observing the barbet nest called us and said that a Crested Goshawk had just landed on the nest tree of the Muller's Barbets (just like last month). So I hurried and got to the garden to see the goshawk sunning itself in a majestic manner.

Crested Goshawk (Accipiter trivirgatus) - 鳳頭蒼鷹

Crested Goshawk (Accipiter trivirgatus) - 鳳頭蒼鷹
What a beautiful creature!

After awing over the beautiful raptor, we went to check out the traps. In the end, 7 out of 20 traps (just like I predicted) caught rodents - one Norway Rat (Rattus norvegicus) and six Asian House Shrews (Suncus murinus). This was my first time doing rodent survey in Taiwan, so even unimpressive results like this was still exciting to me. Although I was a bit surprised by the lack of squirrels caught by the traps.

Norway Rat (above photo) and Asian House Shrew (bottom photo).

We released the shrews on-site since we were able to identify them and their small body size won't able to tolerate being trapped in a cage for too long.

Asian House Shrew (Suncus murinus) - 臭鼩

Asian House Shrew (Suncus murinus) - 臭鼩
Shrew or not, I think they are quite beautiful too.

The Norway Rat was trickier to identify since there are other similar sized rodents in Taiwan, so we brought the rat back to the office for more identification.

In the end, it was definitely a Norway Rat because of the slender head and a blunt nose. Nevertheless, everyone in the office agreed that it is a charismatic rat.

A typhoon is heading towards Taiwan! Unfortunately, our internship program is arranging us to go on a weekend trip to Eastern Taiwan (where the typhoon is passing by) this week, I am still contemplating about going or not. Sigh, such a tough choice.


shan-lin said...

the shrew noses are so comical!

PSYL said...

Comical indeed!

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