Local Heart, Global Soul

June 10, 2015

Show Us Those Tail Feathers…

Filed under: Activities,Apenheul,PHOTOGRAPHY,THE NETHERLANDS — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: ,
(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Back in the winter of 2013 when Family Kiwidutch visited the monkey zoo in the Netherlands called Apenheul, the cold weather drove us indoors whenever we could manage it.

After we had had lunch we dallied outside for a little while as we watched several peacocks flirting with each other.

The smaller, lesser plumed female was being courted first by one very persistent male and then a second male joined in, which resulted in both males spending more time chasing each other off than either pursuing the female.

Since the female didn’t look particularly interested anyway, she took the opportunity to escape the pestering for some peace and quiet.

The first male was particularly eager with his flirtations and was most willing to call and fluff out his feathers, and was so busy with his assertions that when the female went around us in order to show her disinterest, her male suitor came right up to us so that he could get past to follow her.

My resulting close-ups of his feathers were better than I ever could have imagined and the “eye” effect of the decorations is actually a brilliant piece of work from mother nature.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

November 17, 2012

I’m as Proud as a Peacock!

Filed under: PHOTOGRAPHY,Rasa Sentosa,SINGAPORE — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: , ,

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Another page of my diary where at the moment I am documenting our travels to New Zealand and back earlier in 2012.

Now we are on our way home to the Netherlands but since we have a friend here in Singapore our stopover’s here have gradually gotten longer and longer.

After a brilliant day-trip to Melaka, Malaysia yesterday everyone is feeling tired and lazy today so a little while after breakfast the kids drag Himself to the pool for a swim and I do a bit of cleaning and tidying in the room.

There’s a washing machine available in the hotel (that I posted about here: https://kiwidutch.wordpress.com/2012/01/16/new-572/) so I’m sorting dirty clothes so we can do a load of laundry and cleaning out the little refrigerator in our room because we put some bread in there for Little Mr. the day before yesterday and he didn’t eat it.

He hadn’t been hungry at breakfast but has an annoying habit of declaring he’s ravenous about an hour after we’ve left the hotel breakfast table so I’d packed some bread rolls and a croissant for him and put them in the fridge and half of it was still there two days later.

Now I’ve got some fruit I want to put into the fridge, and the bread’s gone rock hard so I broke up the bread and put it on the table outside our room for the birds.

About fifteen minutes later whilst I’m tracking down discarded kid socks on the floor around the pull-out bed in our room I catch a movement outside in the corner of my eye and look up just in time to see a peacock  flying up onto the wall between our patio and the next room.

Forget the socks, I’m now reaching for my camera as slowly and as swiftly as I can, scared that any sudden movement will frighten the bird away but also if I move too slow that the window of opportunity will be lost. My first shots are taken through the glass window but as both the bird and I grow more confident with each other’s presence I summon up the courage to ease the sliding door open  just enough to poke the camera lens out …

Bracing myself on the bed I attempt to try and zoom in as much as possible… a little drama unfolds as a little bird with a bright yellow beak and matching  knee socks joins us, then another, until peacock decides that three’s a crowd on the table and that the supply of bread looks like disappearing a little too quickly at this rate and shoo’s them off in no uncertain terms, but not before the interlopers had stolen some breakfast to take with them.

Peacock tolerates my presence at close quarters but then all of a sudden begins a song and dance that involves much feather ruffling and fluffing up of it’s rear end… did I startle it?  No… the song and dance turns out to be for the mate who turned up to see where the party’s at.

I get to see a full feather display but these peacocks have their bright colours like jade necklaces at their necks rather tan on their tails, very different from their European cousins. Wildlife photography is a bit of a hit and miss affair with me so far (actually if I’m really honest it’s usually “miss”) so I was delighted for a chance to  practice a little with an obliging and somewhat  tame model.  Here are the results…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

I’m going to call this next shot the “Vogue Cover Shot Pose’ …

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

And the shot I like best of all? …This one…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

January 9, 2012

Beasts at Breakfast … but Fortunately NOT on the Menu!

Filed under: Kids and Family,PHOTOGRAPHY,SINGAPORE,Travel — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: , , , ,

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

It’s not often that you can have your children delighted by a wildlife show during breakfast…

We were alerted by squeals of excitement from other hotel guest children that caused our offspring to race off to see what the comotion was all about.

To their amazement there was a large lizard sitting in the early sunshine, soaking up as much heat as possible into his cold blooded body so that he could start to move around more quickly. One of the hotels resident peacocks came to check on him and they seemed totally at ease with one another.

Our kids were fascinated with their opportunity to look at these animals so close up, the peacocks even wandered around the floor around the breakfast tables, no doubt used to scoring dropped bread etc. but they did scatter quickly when over-exited children rushed up to investigate them or try and pat them.

We also saw two monkeys darting through the open reception area, they are “locals”  from the surrounding bush that we are told visit at least once a day, but the staff are never sure exactly when they will turn up. I wasn’t quick enough with my camera to get photographs of the monkeys and I would have had to run to keep up with them for a better shot… and since I’m still getting around on crutches, running certainly isn’t on my agenda any time soon.

We also saw the peacocks by the pools as the children swam and I got some better photos of them then, and we spied a cookoo by the pool but I only got a fleeting shot as it walked past where were were sitting. Due to my lung condition, asthma and Kiwi Daughter and my allergies we have no family pets so our children were suitably impressed to have “wild”  company for breakfast.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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