Thursday, 17 May 2012

Avistar 2012

Burrowing Owl (D. Fettes)
Just got back to my hotel room after attending the opening of the Avistar 2012 Brazil Bird Fair. Held in a classy auditorium close to the fair venue I must say that I was taken by the professionalism displayed by organisor Guto Carvalho and his team. It wasn't just straight presentations illustrated by images of birds, oh, no. There was a blind man who came on stage with his guide dog to present a superb soundscape that he had recorded. A woman came on and proceeded to get the audience to imitate bird calls. Plus, another fella came on an presented his film on the scenery around the Atlantic forests accompanied by a live seven piece orchestra. Impressive. The only downer for me was that the entire night was conducted in Portuguese.

I arrived in Sao Paulo, a tired migrant, at 7.30am after a knackering 11.5 hour flight. Any birding was restricted to the park in which the fair was being held. Had a few new species including Rufous-bellied Thrush, a species that looked like a bulky female Blackbird but with a delightful ruddy wash on its undercarriage. Later, before going to the opening, I took a short walk around the corner from my hotel to explore Sao Paulo University Campus. There were a few good urban birds here including plentiful Southern Lapwings that littered the mown grass. I also discovered a lone Burrowing Owl as it tried act cool standing on a rock with an eye trained on a bunch of students that unwittingly sat very close nearby.

Time to write my speech for the start of the fair tomorrow. Goodbye. 

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