August 27, 2007


By Gehan de Silva Wijeyratne

The rain drummed on the roof at Martin’s as I awoke to a Spot-winged Thrush singing sweetly. I had arrived in Sinharaja the previous day for a public relations cum field visit to meet Hugues, a Belgian birder who runs his own company specialising in bird watching tours. Wicky who was taking Hugues and Veronique on a tour had greeted me on arrival with good news. A Ceylon Frogmouth had been found roosting on some ferns just a few feet away from the main road. What good luck. We feasted our eyes on this nocturnal bird with a strange troll-like appearance because of its wide ‘frog mouth’. The bird opened its eyes once to take a look at me and then went back to sleep. I could think of no better proof than this that wildlife is not disturbed by heavy visitation. On the contrary if they are not harassed, they become habituated to people.

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