These Stilt-legged Flies, were photographed in flagrante delicto in my garden at Bomiriya, 90210. They belong to the family: Micropezidae. And they truly engage in marathon mating efforts, and are easier to photograph when they are blinded by love.
More hot news, this time birding: last Tuesday was an eventful day. It started very early with a vocal Common Hawk Cuckoo waking me up at 1.30 in the morning! Migrants of this bird species boost the resident populations during this time of the year. I think what I heard was a migrant on transit to more woodier interiors. It was a first record for my garden, so I had no complains, despite the nuisance caused.
At a more civilised hour on the same day, I found two hoped for migrants in my yard. The first was an Indian Pitta, which comes all the way from Himalayas. It was seen hopping at a corner of my garden (with dense undergrowth), especially designated for it. I am looking forward to photograph it later on—after giving it some time to settle down. The Indian Pitta is truly gorgeous bird, which explains why it's been featured in the front cover of Salim Ali's magnum opus, The Book of Indian Birds.
The second migrant seen was this Brown-breasted Flycatcher.
When I started birding, it used to be known as Layard's Flycatcher, named after Edgar Leopold Layard (1824 – 1900)—a British civil servant, who succeeded in adding an astonishing 136 species of birds to Sri Lanka's list of birds. This achievement is phenomenal considering that when he started collecting, our avain inventory stood at 182. The scientific name of this bird is Muscicappa muttui of which, the specific epithet: muttui is to honour Muttu (more correctly, Muththu)—the Tamil servant of Layard, who collected this bird from, Point Pedro, Jaffna—the northernmost tip in Sri Lanka. Layard was full of praise for Muttu, and wrote that he has named this bird after him: "... to whose patient perseverance and hunting skill, I owe best of my birds."
The collection of the first Brown-breasted Flycatcher was made by Muttu in June, which suggests that the individual collected was a loiterer—a migrant that has over stayed.
And the penalty it had to pay for that immigration delinquency was death!