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Chris Merkord

Chasing the ‘cendrawasih’, or 39 ways to woo your lover

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Stunning: Laman says that this shot of a Greater Bird of Paradise taken in the Aru Islands in Papua is among his favorites. “The sun popped out from behind the clouds and I saw the picture I dreamed of happening before me.” © Tim Mann
Tim Laman is a Harvard-trained biologist, but he talked about a lot of numbers at the @america cultural center on Thursday when describing the eight years he spent chasing birds of paradise in Indonesia and Papua New Guinea.

Laman and his partner, Cornell University ornithologist Edwin Scholes III, spent 544 days in the field, racking up 18 expeditions to 51 sites — and 200 trips by plane, 58 by boat and 33 by helicopter.

In the end, Laman, who is also a renowned National Geographic wildlife photographer, says that the key number is considerably less: “It’s really all about 39 ways to woo your lover.”

Laman is the first person to capture on camera live birds of paradise, or cendrawasih, from all 39 species, waiting as
long as 80 hours in a makeshift shelter to photograph a bird for just 90 seconds.

 

Read more: http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2013/08/27/chasing-cendrawasih-or-39-ways-woo-your-lover.html

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