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Some more information

Bird names

For all practical purposes the NEW, modern names for birds, as listed in the BIRD INDEX, should be used.

Navigation through the bird pages

In addition to our pages on Birds of Australia we have now also started documenting sightings of birds in Oman. Obviously, this collection is not complete in any way. There are different ways of accessing the information on birds:

Structure of bird pages

There is a separate page describing how bird pages are structured.

Deformities

Birds with deformities are observed only rarely, because they have a hard time surviving in nature. So far we have encountered three examples (two in Australia, one in Oman), all of which show deformities of the bill:

Nomenclature

On these pages we use the term "sighting", rather than "habitat" to describe where a bird was seen, because we do not systematically study where certain bird species live (their distribution). Rather, we only report where we have spotted them, which must of course lead to an incomplete account and biases. Similarly, the use of the non-scientific term "habit" indicates that we report our own experiences, which might not always be a true representation of a bird's patterns of behaviour (as determined when studying it more thoroughly or over longer periods of time).

Accuracy

Not being ornithologists and without prior experience with wildlife in Oman we may make the occasional mistake in identifying species. These are ours, not the Field Guide's, and tips from more experienced bird watchers are very welcome.

Photographic equipment

Camera and Lenses

Until October 2009 we used a Sony DSC-H9 compact digital camera with a 32-500 mm equivalent zoom (up to 15x magnification) and about 3250x2450 pixels. Since October 2009 we have upgraded to a Canon EOS 1000 D SLR, with a 3890x2590 pixel CCD and up to 300 mm focal length.

Photographic techniques

All photos are obtained in the birds' natural habitat, without interference and thus with minimum impact, not even climbing trees.

Setup

No setups are used of any kind. All photos were taken without artificial helps or constraints. No motion detectors, no camera motor or winder, no filters were or are used. Birds are not unduly disturbed by us (which might, for example, lead to them abandoning their nests).

Camouflage

No camouflage clothing, tents, hideouts or other disguises are used either. If the birds won't accept us as part of their environment, they will not be spotted or photographed by us. This implies that we will not be able to show, for example, photos of eggs of birds nesting in tree hollows.

Capture

Birds are neither trapped nor captured to obtain good photos (as is the case in some professional animal photography or films).